We're just a few days away from Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference, which means the rumor mill's heating up again. Let's take a look at what's burbling and see if we can't separate probable fact from probable fiction.
Will the new iPhone be announced?
Ever since Apple's next-generation iPhone was uncovered, there's been speculation that the early reveal would push the announcement up from the traditional WWDC Steve Jobs keynote. Looks like Apple hasn't rushed things after all; expect to see Apple's next iPhone introduced, officially, June 7th.
Probability: 100 percent
Will it have video chat?
Almost certainly, based on the front-facing cameraand iPhone 4OS's video and group chat code. The real question is whether it'll be Wi-Fi only, a nugget that was indicated in the iPhone OS 4 Beta 2 SDK. Honestly, I don't think I'd mind one bit, given the havoc it would wreak on AT&T's already overloaded network.
Probability (Wi-Fi): 90 percent, (3G): percent 20 percent
Will it back detect multitouch gesture controls?
The majority of the iPhone's hardware is a known quantitythis year, but the exact material of the back is still up for debate. Is the glass/plastic/ceramic material on the flat back designed to let cell signals through more easily? Or will it detect multitouch gestures for easier music and app controls? There hasn't been much to support this theory other than pure speculation, and while it would be a nice surprise it's not something I'd bank on.
Probability: 20 percent
Will the new iPhone go on sale?
Mashable and others have speculated that the next iPhone will go on salesimultaneously with its announcement. That would certainly break with tradition: typically, Apple releases its handsets in late June/early July. The original iPhone dropped on June 29, 2007, the 3G came on July 11, 2008 and the 3GS arrived on June 19, 2009. And AT&T's recent actions—blocking employee vacationthis month and pushing up eligibility datesto June 21st—certainly indicate a release around that time. So while the schedule may be sped up somewhat, it's not likely that you'll be able to buy a new iPhone next week.
Probability: 10 percent
Will Apple TV get a much-needed upgrade?
There are believable rumors that Apple TV is going to get a major faceliftsoon: iPhone 4 processor and OS, 1080p streaming, 16GB flash storage, $100 retail price. But! That same rumor also says Apple TV won't be part of the WWDC, and I generally like to take my rumors wholesale.
Probability: 30 percent
Will there be a Verizon iPhone (or iPad)?
The Verizon-Apple courtship has been a lengthy affair, but no less authoritative a voice than the Wall Street Journal swears a Verizon iPhone is on track for releasethis fall. Then again, just Wednesday Verizon's John Johnson insistedthat his company wasn't planning on supporting Apple devices in the near future. Oh yeah, John? Then what about that iPad testing, hmmm? Ugh. This is worse than Ross and Rachel.
Probability: 50 percent
Will we see iTunes.com?
This one's a little tricky. We know Apple's wanted to put iTunes in the cloud ever since their acquisition of streaming music service Lala last December. And Lala's May 31st shutdown, combined with Apple's recently registered iTunes Live trademarkwere both promising signs that iTunes.com would hit at WWDC. But it's not entirely up to Apple, and as of April record label negotiations were stalling out. So what's happened since then? Well, if Apple's successful last-minute negotiations with book publishersare any indicator, the smart money's on Jobs making a deal.
Probability: 70 percent
Will there be a MacBook Air upgrade?
The evidence for a MacBook Air upgrade is circumstantial, but it's the right kind of circumstantial. It hasn't been updated since last June, meaning it's way overduecompared to its MacBook Pro cousins. Rumors have been cropping upmore regularly. But the tipping point may have been last week, when Intel finally announced its ULV Core processors. It's reasonable to assume that the MacBook Air hadn't been updated because there was nothing to update to. Now that there is, expect Apple to jump.
Probability: 80 percent
Will there be a Mac Pro upgrade?
The Mac Pro story is essentially the same as the MacBook Air's: overdue for a refresh, rumors swirling, processor delays — in this case Intel's hexacore Xeon CPUs — resolved. So we'll give it the same odds of happening next week.
Probability: 80 percent
Will Safari finally get extensions?
Daring Fireball's John Gruber has a very, very strong track record of predicting new Apple products. And while he didn't out and out say that Apple would be introducing an extension API for Safari at WWDC, he did strongly suggestthe possibility last week. It also just makes sense: the extension gap with Chrome and Firefox is one Apple will want to address, and WWDC would be the right time and place.
Probability: 70 percent
Will Steve Ballmer be there?
Analysts say the darnedest things! Like Global Equities Research analyst Trip Chowdhry, whose idle speculation that Steve Ballmer might show up at WWDCwas promptly shot downby Microsoft. While it's not quite as crazy as it might sound—Bill Gates appeared at Macworldin 1997, after all—this one's only going to happen if Ballmer decides to take the stage by force. Which, hey!
Probability: .001 percent
Copyright 2012 by Gizmodo.com