January 16, 2013
What’s On Tap For Apple In 2013? One Analyst Adds His Take
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online
We´re not yet 1 month away from the incessant “End of Year” lists that sites pump out in order to fill out a slow news cycle. Yet, one analyst is already looking deep into 2013, making predictions about what one tech company could release over the next 12 months. Whereas previous year´s predictions may have been made with a positive outlook, these guesses come from a place of nervous uncertainty.
Apple´s stock has been in a steady fall since September, sending many to hastily call upon Apple to start acting like their competition, releasing cheaper devices in more countries.
A recent controversial Wall Street Journal story hasn´t helped matters, stating the company was cutting iPhone component orders due to lagging sales, which sent stock prices down below the $500 mark.
Macrumors.com has posted a roadmap by Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo with KGI Securities in which he predicts what Apple will release in the coming year and when. There are few surprises in his roadmap, barring the prediction that Apple will release a newly redesigned iPhone 5, as well as an iPhone 5S, which is largely expected to be the next generation iPhone.
Starting in 1Q13, Kuo believes Apple will roll out a minor update to the existing Apple TV model, rather than introduce the large TV set many have been looking for. The analyst doesn´t offer any information about how this device might be updated, but does note that he believes Apple won´t begin making their strong push into television until 2014.
According to Kuo, their difficulties in signing licensing agreements and lack of experience in the field makes it unlikely we´ll see anything TV related this year.
Kuo also predicts we´ll see a modestly updated MacBook Air late in 2Q13 with a slight bump in processors. Since the first Air was released in 2008, many began to lust after a machine as powerful as the MacBook Pro in the same slim size as the Air. Now with the MacBook Pro with Retina Display, it could be argued many users are looking for an even thinner device. Kuo dashes these hopes, saying the company has yet to figure out a way to deliver a Retina display while maintaining the Air´s incredible thinness.
According to Kuo´s report, Apple will release a revamped iPhone 5 this July alongside an upgraded iPhone 5S. He believes the 5S could arrive with an A7 chip (the next logical step) as well as a fingerprint sensor and an improved camera with an f 2.0 aperture. As for the revamped iPhone 5, Kuo says this device would be the “low cost” iPhone everyone´s been talking about, carrying a thicker, plastic shell available in 6 different colors.
Kuo has taken up residence in the camp which believes Apple will stick with their 3Q13 product cycle for the iPad, noting the next generation will be much slimmer and take on the thin bezels of the iPad mini. Speaking of the iPad mini, Kuo expects this is the year the smaller iPad will get the Retina treatment.
Finally, Kuo believes this will also be the year Apple gets rid of their non-Retina MacBook Pro models, dropping the price on these drool-worthy hybrid machines.
There´s a lot left of 2013 to play out, of course, and it´s yet to be seen if Apple shares will return to their once lofty prices. It´s also left to be seen if any of these predictions will come true. (The iPhone 5 predictions sound particularly far-fetched.)
However, Kuo has given us all a handy scorecard with which to check his credibility and rate his predictions throughout the year.