Taking a look back at another week of news and headlines from Cupertino, this week’s Apple Loop includes the iPhone 9 delay, WWDC cancellation, iPhone 12 secrets, a new MacBook Pro keyboard, updated mouse controls for iPad, the lack of PR momentum in Apple Arcade, and the longest ‘one take’ filmed on iPhone yet.
Apple Loop is here to remind you of a few of the very many discussions that have happened around Apple over the last seven days (and you can read my weekly digest of Android news here on Forbes).
Apple Faces WWDC Cancellations And iPhone Delays
Like many around the world, Apple is facing up to the implications of slowing down coronavirus. As well as the cancellation of the (not actually confirmed) launch event for the iPhone 9, Apple is also looking at a cancellation of its Worldwide Developer Conference. Stan Schroeder reports:
The Santa Clara Public Health Department issued an order on Monday (via Appleinsider) banning mass gatherings with more than 1,000 people due to the increasing rates of the coronavirus.
…Since the WWDC typically takes place in San Jose, which is in Santa Clara County, with an attendance of 5,000 or more, it would be forbidden under the terms of the ban, which goes into effect on March 11.
Read more on the cancellation at Mashable. The impact is also being felt in Apple’s production chain, with the iPhone 9 ‘indefinitely postponed’ and the iPhone 12 also looking at a potential delay. That’s all going to have a financial impact:
the lower cost of the iPhone 9 was always going to mark this iPhone out as being a popular handset that would bring in significant sales. These would be on top of the sales of the iPhone 11 family, and boost the number of iPhone units sold in the year. With sales on a downward trend, the iPhone 9 has the potential to reverse that trend. Delay the iPhone 9 and you delay the boost to Apple’s numbers.
Software Secrets Of The iPhone 12
Putting aside viral delays, a closer examination of the beta code for iOS 14 has brought to light a number of new features inside the code, such as the ability to recall messages. Robert Jones reports:
Apple looks also like it is going to introduce a new iMessage feature in iOS 14 that will allow people to retract and withdraw messages that they have already posted. If a message was recalled, the receiver would get a message indicating that the message had been removed. In addition, according to the leak, iMessage is also set to get a mentions feature that would allow people type an @ symbol in a group message to see the list of people in the conversation.
MacBook Fans Wait For Scissor Switch Keyboard
Noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo is reporting that Apple is ready to remove the ill-fated Butterfly keyboard from all of the MacBook range for the Magic Keyboard that debuted in the 16-inch MacBook Pro last year. The question now is if this waits for the new models expected at the end of the year, or in an intermediate model this summer. Sam Byford reports:
Kuo recently indicated that the current 13-inch MacBook Pro will be replaced by a 14-inch model, but he hasn’t said whether that’ll happen with this second-quarter update. It’s possible that the scissor-switch keyboard will come to the 13-inch model first before a more significant overhaul later. Apple has been shipping butterfly keyboards on all new laptop releases since 2016, so correcting course should be a priority.
Prepare Your iPad For A Mouse
Also lurking in the beta code are the hooks to allow the iPad and iPad Pro to support cursors and mouse/touchpad control. That would bring the iPad even closer the the laptop form factor and further diminishing the MacBook family as Apple’s primary keyboard/screen hardware. Benjamin Mayo reports:
The changes coming to the software will bring most of the cursor features you recognize from a Mac desktop experience to iOS.
One difference may be that the pointer disappears automatically after a few seconds of not touching the connected mouse or trackpad, a concession to the touch-first experience of the iPad. It would reappear when the user attempts to move the cursor again.
Apple Arcade’s PR Momentum
Apple Arcade was released to critical acclaim from Apple watchers, but how is the service performing now the initial flush of excitement has left? There are new titles, but Apple appears to have stopped the grind of constant promotion using the new content. Josh Coulson reports:
There was a lot of deserved hype surrounding Apple Arcade upon release. Especially since some of its 50+ titles had been developed by big names such as Sega and Ubisoft. Six months later and that hype has dropped off significantly. Apple is keeping details about Arcade’s numbers and performance close to its chest and doesn’t seem to be that bothered about advertising the service or adding to it in a way that makes sense.
How long can a single take be on the iPhone 11 Pro? Turns out the answer is nearly five hours and twenty minutes. Apple has taken a 4K walkthrough of the St Petersburg’s State Heritage Museum.
Shot on iPhone 11 Pro in 4K, Apple says the 5 hour 19 minute 28 second video was recorded on one battery charge. The journey covers more than 45 galleries and not only features the art on exhibition, but Apple set up several live performances along the way. Watch the video after the break …
For people that don’t want to sit through the whole thing, Apple has made a trailer featuring the highlights. It indicates the phone started at 100% battery and finished with 19%.
Apple Loop brings you seven days worth of highlights every weekend here on Forbes. Don’t forget to follow me so you don’t miss any coverage in the future. Last week’s Apple Loop can be read here, or this week’s edition of Loop’s sister column, Android Circuit, is also available on Forbes.