Many were disappointed with Apple when the company announced its iPhone 4S early last month. Following rumors surrounding an iPhone 5, some where expecting an all-new device that boasted a fancy redesign. That device will be coming next year, however, according to "sources in the upstream supply chain," and it will be accompanied by an all-new iPad, iMac, and MacBook Air.
A report from DigiTimes claims that Apple will "completely overhaul" a number of its popular product lines in 2012, specifically mentioning those listed above. Although the report doesn't indicate how these products will be overhauled, it is expected to mean that they will boast designs that are significantly different to those currently featured — not just upgrades to internal components.
The next iPhone is, of course, the most likely to boast a new redesign. After the reaction to the iPhone 4S, I don't think Apple would attempt to launch an iPhone 4 lookalike a third time around. The sixth-generation device is expected to sport the thinner tapered design that many thought would appear with this year's model, in addition to a larger edge-to-edge display. If this is indeed what the iPhone 5 will look like, many case makers are already well prepared.
As for the iPad, it's hard to imagine how Apple could make this drastically different to the iPad 2. The second-generation device already boasts a terrific design that's incredibly thin, and we don't think they will tinker with its display size. In which case, we can only imagine that the "completely overhauled" 2012 device will be even thinner and lighter than the current model, possibly with better cameras and a new Apple A6 processor.
The iMac has maintained pretty much the same design for several years now, so it wouldn't be surprising to see a design change to the company's all-in-one. However, similar to the iPad, we don't think the iMac's design will change too significantly.
A complete redesign to the MacBook Air seems the hardest to believe at this point. The ultraportable was only changed in October last year — when the 11-inch model was introduced — and it seems unlikely that Apple would change it again so quickly.
It is likely, however, that Apple will overhaul the MacBook Pro. This notebook hasn't seen a major design refresh since 2008, when the aluminum unibody models were launched, and there are rumors that a thinner, MacBook Air-like design is on the way.
Will you be putting your Apple purchases on hold in case of new designs in 2012?
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