The 2018 iPhone event has come and gone with no word about most of Apple’s product line. With so much change in the flagship product lineup, few anticipated that Apple would spend valuable stage time talking about anything else besides iPhone and Apple Watch.
What everyone did expect was to see Apple send out invitations to an October event where they would address the rest of the lineup. Those invitations have not yet gone out at the time of this writing. And Apple watchers are starting to get a little nervous.
The fear is that Apple will punt its major issues down the road another year, as they have done with the Mac Pro. After all, Apple is having no trouble making money hand over fist by selling $1,000 iPhones and $500 watches. But Apple has major issues that have turned into embarrassments in their product lineup. This is what they have to address to make those embarrassments go away:
The Mac mini Must Die
Forbes is far from the only news outlet repeating stories about an alleged updated Mac mini. The mini has a cult following. This article is being produced on a vintage Mac mini. In fact, all Mac minis are vintage because they haven’t been refreshed in four years. Apparently, the last person in the Mac mini section forgot to turn the lights out.
Apple does not need to release another small, cheap mini for its hundreds of fans. Apple needs to kill it once and for all and admit that they have no interest in a sub-$1,000 desktop. That is the real truth. Even if Apple is pressured to release another, it will be underpowered, unloved by Apple, and left to be Apple’s problem to fix four years from now.
Put a Retina Display on It Already
At one point, the MacBook Air was Apple’s best selling computer. There is a chance that it still is. It is just that Apple doesn’t like to talk about it anymore. It has also been sitting around for years without any real attention.
What makes it the most embarrassing product in the lineup is that it still does not have a Retina display. Either Apple can’t make a Retina display laptop at the $1,000 price range, or they don’t want to.
Making matters worse, the Air was so named because it was thin and light. It is no longer the thinnest or lightest laptop in the lineup. Everything about it needs a rethink. It simply cannot continue to sit in Apple Stores next to modern laptops for another year.
iPad, Pro or Not
This is the year that Apple has to decide if the iPad is the future of computing or not. They make an expensive, proprietary keyboard for it. But there are no other accessories geared toward a pro market. The Apple Pencil is a nice to have. But let’s face it. Most people are not graphic designers or sketch artists.
The iPad Pro is rumored to get a new kind of connector along with USB-C. What it really needs is pointer support for a mouse or trackpad. Another major limitation is the mobile browser. Professional web workers require a desktop browser. There are some things that just cannot be done in a mobile browser.
Apple has straddled the fence with indecision for too many years for too many products. This needs to be the year that they make a firm statement about the Mac mini (to be or not to be), put a Retina display on the MacBook Air, and make the iPad Pro an unambiguously professional-grade machine.