iPhone 11, Apple Watch Series 5, 16" MacBook Pro - Everything to expect at Apple's Sept 10th Media Event

Episode Summary

Apple's annual September media event takes place next Tuesday, September 10th to be exact. We are going to see new iPhones, the iPhone 11 and its iterations but will we find out about a new 16" MacBook Pro or Apple Watch Series 5? Time is the only thing that can answer that question but it doesn't stop us from speculating so that you don't have to! Take a listen to Marc and Mitchell break it down for you.

Episode Notes

Apple's annual September media event takes place next Tuesday, September 10th to be exact. We are going to see new iPhones, the iPhone 11 and its iterations but will we find out about a new 16" MacBook Pro or Apple Watch Series 5? Time is the only thing that can answer that question but it doesn't stop us from speculating so that you don't have to! Take a listen to Marc and Mitchell break it down for you.

Episode Transcription

Announcer: Welcome back to YourTechReport.

Marc: Welcome to YourTechReport. He is Mitchell Whitfield in Los Angeles. I am Marc Aflalo in Montreal. Thank you guys for being here. Follow along all our social media @YourTechReport, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube. Lots of fun stuff there for you to view, for you to enjoy.

Marc: Mitchell?

Mitchell: Yes.

Marc: What an exciting ... I love this. The summer seems like there's a little bit of a lull, a little lull. We talk about this. It was a bit more exciting this year, because things were released. Amazon had some fun stuff earlier in the summer, but now it's here.

Mitchell: It's Apple time.

Marc: We've had the Note 10 and the 10 Plus a couple of weeks back. But Tuesday, which is the 10th of September, Apple is going to be announcing new iPhones.

Marc: Now, of course, no one ever knows that for sure, right? They could surprise us.

Mitchell: No, they are. Come on. They have to.

Marc: But this is the time of year that they're bringing us new phones. There is some speculation that we may also see some updates along the lines of a new MacBook Pro 16". I'm doubtful of that. There's some rumors-

Mitchell: But you'd be surprised if it actually happened. You're doubting it, but you'd be thrilled.

Marc: Any time that an actual surprise comes from any of these big names, especially Apple, an unexpected surprise, I get excited about it.

Mitchell: Right.

Marc: At least the possibility of it. So if there were other announcements like an Apple Watch or the new MacBook Pro 16", especially, because I'm in the market for a new one, I get excited.

Mitchell: That's right.

Marc: I get excited. So you know, what excites you about this? Is it just the prospect of a new phone because it's been two years since you updated, like me?

Mitchell: Yeah. I mean, just to let everyone know who's listening maybe for the first time or forgot about our adventures. Normally Marc and I are the shameless, 'we must get a new iPhone every year' guys. And last year was the first time that Marc and I broke this vicious cycle and said, "You know what? We are not getting the new iPhone XS and XS Plus. Because they are not different enough from the X or big enough of a departure from the X in terms of performance and features to warrant us spending another 10 or 12 hundred dollars, or 14 or 15 hundred dollars Canadian. So we held off.

Mitchell: So yes, Marc. This year, regardless, I am very excited about the new iPhone now.

Mitchell: I've mentioned this on the show before, but it bears mentioning again. From what we're hearing, which is really kind of sad and frustrating, you're hearing people in the industry, a lot of reviewers, a lot of tech folks saying, "Hey, what's really exciting is what's coming in 2020."

Mitchell: Which is so upsetting, because this is not an S year. This is not an incremental update year. This is a major update year. Last year was the S bump in features. This is supposed to be a big departure in terms of design feature set. So I'm a little bummed that I'm hearing 2020's the thing to wait for, since it doesn't make sense. But I'm still really excited for getting my hands on a new device with a crazy new camera system, as ugly as it might be. And it's going to be ugly. It's going to be ugly.

Marc: Here's the thing, though. When we first saw the current generation iPhone X, I guess it was, and we saw that dual camera system with that hump; we thought that was ugly too.

Mitchell: Not ugly. It was more inconvenient. I'd say it was inconvenient just because of the bump. In an otherwise, Marc, sleek and gorgeous device, you had this bump on the back that, unless you had a case on it, in some cases even when you did have a case on it, would create this wobbly thing if you tried to put it down.

Mitchell: So I wouldn't say it was ugly. This year defines ugly for me.

Marc: This year defines ugly.

Marc: And let's describe it. I mean, we're expecting this rounded square area on the upper left hand portion of the iPhone, the back of the iPhone, that's going to house the camera system. Which is going to be three cameras plus flash, plus ambient light sensors, et cetera, et cetera.

Marc: And that's pretty much the only aesthetic change we're expecting from this device other than the fact that some materials might change. We might have thinner materials to make it a little bit lighter, hopefully.

Mitchell: Hopefully, yeah.

Marc: We're going to see a bigger battery. We're going to see, obviously, the adoption of newer chip sets and of course different modems and stuff like that in the device that'll overall make it a better technological advancement. Right?

Mitchell: Yes, that's very true. So we're going to see advancements in different areas. Maybe not 'woo-ha' kind of advancements, but 'yay'. You know, polite opera applause.

Mitchell: But you mentioned the battery. The battery is sort of a mixed bag for me. Because if you notice, Marc, that in recent years when Apple has updated their iPhones, we've seen incremental battery bumps. I'm getting emotional again over the year. Sorry. We've seen incremental battery bumps, right? But what we always see is, they always add new features that require more power. So they bump up the battery, and their biggest selling point is now you're getting all these new features with the same great battery life.

Mitchell: That's been their new thing. Have you noticed that? Over the last several years they bump up the power needs for the phone. So when they increase the battery size, we're just getting more power but no decrease in battery life. I want an increase. I want to see an increase in performance and an increase in battery life.

Marc: You're going to see an increase in performance for sure, but here's how you're going to see an increase in battery life, Mitchell. And that's by getting yourself the Plus model with the larger screen. That's something I'm actually quite looking forward to.

Mitchell: Me too.

Marc: Because I didn't get it last time. And I look over at my wife and she sits there with her 8 Plus-

Mitchell: Envy.

Marc: And I miss that form factor, although I enjoy the screen size and the form factor in my hands today.

Marc: Let's review something that was released earlier this week. There was a leak, an internal document from Apple, that made its way on the interwebs-

Mitchell: Shocking.

Marc: ... confirming three devices. Okay. For next week?

Mitchell: Okay. Yeah.

Marc: We're going to see the iPhone 11 Pro, which is going by the code name D42; the iPhone 11 Pro Max, which is going to go D43, so that's going to be the larger one; and another one, an iPhone 11 that's going by the nickname of N104. All of which are going to come out of the box with iOS 13.1, with the little incremental update to iOS 13.0, 1.0 or something like that, come October. So three devices, two of which we pretty much know about.

Marc: We're not really sure what that iPhone 11, N104, is. Is that like the-

Mitchell: Oh, I can tell you what that is.

Marc: Is that like the XR version? Like the dumbed down version, the cheaper version that's going to be under 1,000 dollars?

Mitchell: Exactly. So basically, they're trying to avoid confusion. Because in the previous generation we had the XR, we had the XS, we had the XS Plus. We're trying to get away from the confusing nomenclature for these different devices.

Mitchell: So, like you said, the R line of phones will now become this traditional iPhone 11. Okay?

Marc: Okay.

Mitchell: The X line of phones, with the OLED screen and more camera features ... Because what we're hearing is the regular 11, the artist previously known as the R series, is going to be bumped from one camera to two cameras, right?

Marc: Yes.

Mitchell: And the X series, now to become the 11 Pro and Pro Max, that's going to go from two cameras to three cameras. Right?

Mitchell: So, that's really going to be the differentiating point. The R is going to become the standard iPhone, and the higher end XS and S Plus are going to become known as the Pro line. I think that's going to be exactly what it is.

Marc: Now, there was some conversation about this phone potentially switching from Lightning to USB-C, which we know is an inevitability.

Mitchell: Right. It's coming eventually.

Marc: Yeah. What we do hear is that it's going to ship with a USB-C to Lightning cable, with a new adapter that's USB-C. So thus kind of solidifying it. Especially if you're looking at their Mac line up and all their latest computers, with more and more older generation computers being named obsolete. These new ones all have USB-C. It's a natural progression to include that kind of cable, plus a lot of people have the other one if they need it. Right?

Mitchell: Exactly. And I think what you're seeing is basically Apple answering, again, a little too late in my opinion for certain features, answering the Samsungs and the Huaweis and the different manufacturers that have fast charging in a lot of their devices.

Mitchell: Meaning that if you charge for, what, 15 minutes? You can get something crazy like ... again, emotions. Sorry.

Marc: On the P30 Pro, 15 minutes gives you about 47% or something like that. But when you plug that charger in ... and, you know what, I have it right here. So the actual charger itself, it's called the SuperCharge, and it's a 40 watt charger.

Mitchell: Wow.

Marc: And it goes from zero to 50 really fast.

Mitchell: In under half an hour. It's crazy.

Marc: I'd love to see that technology here on the iPhone 11. Plus, we're hearing that we're going to have the ability to charge other devices. So like your AirPods case. Finally, we'll have a purpose to have that wireless charging on that AirPods case, because you'll be able to hold onto your phone and actually charge that.

Mitchell: And by the way, that's something that allegedly you're only going to see on the Pro line.

Marc: Yeah. Correct.

Mitchell: That feature is not coming to the standard 11, formerly known as the R. It gets a little confusing.

Marc: Yes, it does.

Mitchell: So, that is only going to be on the Pro phones. But we're also hearing, Marc ... and again, as Marc said and as I'm saying, disclaimer city here, these are only rumors ... is that you may only be able to charge something like AirPods, a smaller device. It's not going to be designed to charge another phone like the Samsung devices are designed to do.

Mitchell: So in those great Samsung ads when somebody, I guess an iPhone person, is running out of battery, takes their phone, puts it on top of their ... or maybe it's another Samsung phone ... and puts it on top of their phone, you can charge phone to phone. We're not hearing that, for sure, that that's what's going to happen. You may only be able to charge accessories like the AirPods with a charging case. Just to say.

Marc: Yeah. You know what? It's a cool trick. It really is a cool party trick. I've enjoyed demonstrating it to people when I use the Huawei and being able to hold the iPhone against it. So it's a cool party trick. I think that it's useful when you lose charge. But let's not forget the fact that the case itself for the AirPods, that's supposed to be your backup battery for the AirPods anyway.

Mitchell: Exactly. That's what I'm saying is if that's all it can do, to me, it ceases to be useful. Because as you said, Marc, the battery pack built into the charger is already good for, what? Like four full recharges of your AirPods.

Mitchell: My daughter Samantha, her phone is always on like 12%. This girl's got to get off her phone. It's always on 12%, no matter what. So, for me, it's like, "Oh Sam, just give me your phone, and piggyback on daddy's phone for 10 minutes. And get it charged enough to get you home." For me, that has more value.

Marc: Yeah. Put it on airplane mode or something.

Mitchell: So for me, being able to actually charge a phone with your phone has much more value than being able to charge my wireless earbud case.

Mitchell: That's just for me personally, but I'm sure other people would be like, "Yay, I can charge my AirPods and listen for another 22 hours if I need to."

Marc: Here's a question for you. I'm trying to think back to previous years and the current generation Apple Watch, which is the Apple Watch Series 4, it was unveiled at the same event last year, was it not?

Mitchell: Oh geez. That's a good one.

Marc: When I look online, it says it was released in September. And there was only one one September event in 2018.

Mitchell: Yeah. So it must've been that one.

Marc: Yeah. It says here, it came out September 2018, the same day as the iPhone XS and the XS Max. So, I mean the odds are pretty good that we're going to see the next iteration of the Apple Watch as well, a Series 5.

Mitchell: Oh, that'd be weird.

Marc: Yeah. But I don't suspect it's going to be a major increase.

Marc: I think what's happening here is we're seeing Apple force the marketplace to change. And change the expectations of what to expect, hardware-wise.

Marc: The reason everybody says 'wait until 2020', number one, it's just a cop out, because we don't know what's coming in 2020. It could be 2021, you know? And we're going to see a 5G iPhone.

Marc: Apple's never been quick to adopt these brand new technologies before they're really ripe in the market. What's the point in having a 5G phone before you can even use it in your city, right?

Mitchell: You know what? You just led me into something; not a mini rant, but something I wanted to make clear to people that are listening to the show or listening to us on podcast, however you're listening to us. Everyone's talking about 5G and how Apple, like you said, is usually a little late to the game until it's a viable technology. Until we [crosstalk 00:12:15].

Marc: I wouldn't even call it late to the game. I think they're just cautiously optimistic about it.

Mitchell: Yeah. There have been other things, Marc, that Apple has been late to the game with. Okay, let's admit it. There are a lot of features that Apple doesn't put in and then everyone is-

Marc: Wireless charging.

Mitchell: Exactly. Like scraps they throw to their user base. Like, "Oh, we finally have this." And Samsung users are laughing, saying, "We've had that for two years. You guys are idiots."

Mitchell: When it comes to 5G though, I totally understand what Apple is saying and what they're doing. Because if you look around, there are very few cities throughout North America, throughout the world right now that have 5G. Very few cities. It's still in its infancy. To spend money sourcing a product, creating a product that is meant to use a technology that is barely rolled out in the world is kind of silly. So I'm on Apple's side.

Mitchell: Now, in addition to the fact that 5G technology still is not what it should be in terms of the towers or transmitters that are being placed throughout the world, because these things require proximity and, in a lot of cases, they require line of sight. And in order to have proximity and line of sight coverage for a new technology, you have to put up so many towers. The infrastructure has to be so solid, so robust. We're nowhere near being there yet.

Mitchell: So, the fact that Apple is holding off on doing phones that take advantage of a technology that really doesn't exist in its proper form yet? I don't mind that Apple doesn't have it in their phones yet.

Marc: Yeah. I'm on side with that too.

Mitchell: In fact, to me, it's more of a bragging point for phones that have it, because you can barely use it.

Mitchell: I just wanted to rant a little bit about 5G.

Marc: So, we've got phones. We've got potential of the Apple Watch, which I think will probably see an update. I really think there has to be something substantial enough to justify adding something like the Apple Watch Series 5 to a keynote like this. And I don't know what that's going to be. Because all the rumors that are out there really just talk about things like a smart band that can tighten itself or sleep tracking.

Marc: It really is more software stuff. I'm not sure it really warrants a release like this, but I think we'll find out next week. And the same goes for Apple TV. There's rumors that come out now, a couple of days before the event, that we're going to see a new Apple TV with the A12 chip on it. Same form factor and everything.

Marc: But is there a benefit to that? We've just seen the introduction of HDR. You've got 4K. They're amping up their TV service. Probably going to hear about that. So does it make sense to mub that up?

Mitchell: Does it make sense? I've always [crosstalk 00:14:39].

Mitchell: I would like that. I don't know if it's worthy. In a lot of these things sometimes they just do like a little passing, "Oh by the way, we're also updating the Apple TV. Anyway on to Apple Watch." And it's like, "Hey, what'd you say?"

Mitchell: I personally am always excited about an Apple TV update. Again, it's one of those products that I use a lot more than I think I'm going to use, and I end up enjoying it a lot. Now Disney+ is on the horizon, right? And this is going to be a big deal.

Mitchell: So having Apple make consumers aware ... You know what, Marc? Sometimes you do updates just to, and again, maybe this is on the consumers-

Marc: Remind people about it. It's like rebranding.

Mitchell: Exactly. So maybe people have to realize that for a lot of products, streaming devices in particular, especially when there's a new service like Disney+, their brand new streaming service coming out. Maybe you do a slight refresh that seems incremental and stupid. But as we just said, it's free advertising for your product.

Marc: Reminds people that it's there.

Mitchell: So I think for Apple it might not be a bad idea to do that.

Mitchell: As for the Apple Watch, I held off on the fourth one, Series 4. I wish I had one, but I had just gotten the 3 as a gift.

Mitchell: I couldn't do it. I didn't want to do it. It's like, "Oh daddy loves his gift. I'm getting the new one."

Marc: They wouldn't have known.

Mitchell: Yeah, I could have done it sneakily, right?

Marc: Yeah.

Mitchell: If they do come out with an Apple Watch, I think it'd be interesting. I don't know that it's 100% necessary. I'd still like to see Apple and every tech company out there get out of this every-year cycle of putting out a new, you know, fill in the blank here. Whether it's a watch, a phone. I still would like to see a two-year cycle, where the updates become, "Oh, now I see something substantial."

Mitchell: Because really, how many people are like us that hold off? We're tech enthusiasts, and we hold off. So how many people that aren't tech enthusiasts go, "Oh. Another iPhone. Another Samsung Galaxy Note. Whatever, who cares?"

Mitchell: If you waited two years, people would actually care. You'd give people a real reason to buy the new products. I think we might see sales increase if they waited two years.

Marc: Okay. Finally, there's been talking about this introduction of a new MacBook Pro 16" model that's going to come out somewhat along the lines of the same form factor as the 15". In some cases when they had released a larger screen device, it actually ends up being almost smaller, sometimes. I can imagine this being a little bit more wider of a screen to the 15, which will allow them to widen the actual chassis where the keyboard is, which will allow them to shrink down the speakers and actually make this a thinner, lighter, bigger screen device. Do you think that's something we're going to see alongside an iPhone and an Apple Watch?

Mitchell: For some reason I don't think we will.

Mitchell: Listen, it's totally possible. I don't think we will, and I'm kind of hoping they don't. This tends to be more of a mobile keynote than anything else. In the past have we seen iPads announced at these events? Or are they later in the year? They're later in the year, right?

Marc: No, iPads are always October. They're always October or somewhere mid year. Somewhere, like March sometimes.

Mitchell: Right. You know, I said this is usually a mobile keynote, but like we said, Apple is trying to sort of refresh and rebrand and revitalize their lineup. So I don't know. The only thing that worries me, Marc, is every other Apple laptop you talk about thinner, lighter, sleeker. And all I hear is 'throttling and throttling and throttling'.

Mitchell: Because they have these great chips in these computers, and these chassis are not designed to manage the heat properly. So you end up not being able to use the full power of the processors in these devices because the chassis is too small.

Mitchell: Wouldn't you like to see Apple do a Pro product, like a Pro laptop, a MacBook Pro that actually is big and beefy? Kind of like Alienware used to do with their heavier laptops?

Marc: No. I don't think so.

Mitchell: Maybe not that thick. I'd still like to see it just a tiny bit thicker. Because, Marc, there are plenty of people that use their laptops as their desktops. If you made a higher end model or if you made a model for power users that were using it as their main system, made it a little thicker, a little heavier ... maybe the Pro Ultimate, I don't know. The naming is going to drive me crazy. But I would like to have something that can actually use all the power that's built inside of it without worrying about, "Oh well we don't really have the capacity to use all the power because it generates too much heat because we made the chassis so small."

Mitchell: I wouldn't mind seeing something a little bigger if it meant being able to access the full potential of the product I paid for.

Marc: A conversation for another day.

Mitchell: All right. I tried to squeeze it in here.

Marc: Thank you guys for being here. Again, follow along on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube. It is @YourTechReport.

Marc: We will find out all the details about this event, and we will have a great chat with you guys on Tuesday after the Apple keynote when we find out if all these details were true. If maybe we were wrong. We will see you again then, and we will speak to you again then.

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