Skip to main content

Apple’s October ‘Unleashed’ event: what to expect

Apple’s October ‘Unleashed’ event: what to expect

/

The Mac rumors have been abound

Share this story

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

Apple has announced an event for October 18th, with a video containing the title “Unleashed.” If you’ve been watching the rumor mill, it won’t come as a surprise — the company still has a lot of products that are expected to come out this year but haven’t shown up in an Apple keynote.

Chief among those are new, more powerful MacBook Pros, which will follow the incredible Apple Silicon-powered 13-inch MacBook Pro that launched last November. The company is also expected to release new AirPods, and it’s got an entire OS that was announced but hasn’t shipped. Read on for a deep dive into the rumors surrounding these products and more.

Redesigned MacBook Pros

Most of the rumors about the event concern redesigned MacBook Pros, which are expected to feature 14- and 16-inch screens, along with a new Apple processor. Mark Gurman and Ming-Chi Kuo (who have pretty solid track records when it comes to rumors) have both said that the laptops will feature iPhone 12-esque flat sides with a redesigned MagSafe charging port and that they’ll no longer have the Touch Bar that’s been a staple of many MacBook Pros since 2016.

Ports, glorious ports

Apple is also rumored to be bringing ports back to its laptops with the redesign. The new MacBooks Pros may include an SD card reader and HDMI and MagSafe ports, which will be familiar (and possibly beloved) by people who miss the days when MacBooks had more than one type of port.

Mark Gurman reports that the laptops will be powered by new chips, which are expected to be more powerful variants of the M1 processor found in today’s computers. The “M1X” (or M2, or whatever name Apple actually goes with) is expected to have more high-performance cores than its predecessor (eight instead of four) and even offer a choice of 16 or 32 graphics cores (compared to the M1’s seven or eight). What’s still unclear is whether the new processor will do away with any of the seeming limitations of the M1: none of the Apple Silicon Macs are configurable with more than 16GB of RAM or 2TB of storage, they can’t run more than two displays, and none of them have more than two Thunderbolt ports (the iMac has at most two Thunderbolt ports and two USB-C ports). Traditionally, the higher-end MacBook Pros have four Thunderbolt ports, though the inclusion of MagSafe and HDMI may make that less necessary.

The configuration screen for an Intel-based MacBook Pro. Just having options for graphics cores would be much easier to explain to new buyers than Turbo Boosts and base clocks.
The configuration screen for an Intel-based MacBook Pro. Just having options for graphics cores would be much easier to explain to new buyers than Turbo Boosts and base clocks.

If you’re thinking, “Wow, these new computers sound like everything I ever could’ve wanted,” you’re not alone — a lot of people are hyped about the rumors (though it’s worth keeping in mind that those don’t always pan out). If it turns out that Apple has taken all of the community’s feedback to heart, the chip shortage could make these laptops hot-ticket items for quite a while.

A Pro Mac Mini

Gurman also recently reported that a more powerful Mac mini would be coming soon, featuring the same processor found in the updated MacBook Pros and more ports than are currently available on the M1-powered Mini. It’s an interesting rumor because the M1 Mini has one of the widest port selections available on an M1 Mac with USB-A, HDMI, two Thunderbolt ports, and optional 10-gigabit ethernet. But the 2018 Intel-based version, which a lot of people think of as the Mac Mini Pro (in part due to its space grey color), has all of that plus two more Thunderbolt ports. For those looking for a powerful Apple-powered desktop, a replacement for the 2018 Mac Mini could be a great option, given the lack of rumors about a 27-inch iMac.

Apple is still selling the Intel-powered 2018 Mac Mini.
Apple is still selling the Intel-powered 2018 Mac Mini.

New AirPods

Gurman, Kuo, and Nikkei have all reported that Apple is working on a follow-up to its regular, non-Pro AirPods and have said that the headphones will feature the shorter stems found on their more expensive counterparts. It feels like AirPods would’ve fit in better at Apple’s iPhone event, but given that they were absent, we may end up seeing them on the 18th. There is also always the (hilarious) possibility that Apple just announces them via press release like it did the AirPods Pro and Max, but with how popular the original ones were, it feels like their successors should get some event time.

Apple announced macOS Monterey in June.
Apple announced macOS Monterey in June.
Image: Apple

A macOS Monterey release date

Apple has released iOS and iPadOS 15, but macOS Monterey, which was announced alongside them, is still in beta. It would be a bit strange if Apple released new Macs that were running macOS Big Sur out of the box, especially given that Monterey was announced about three months ago at WWDC. If Apple doesn’t announce that the new version of macOS is shipping with the redesigned MacBook Pros, I’ll be pretty surprised.

Today’s Storystream

Feed refreshed Sep 25 Not just you

E
Twitter
Emma RothSep 25
Rihanna’s headlining the Super Bowl Halftime Show.

Apple Music’s set to sponsor the Halftime Show next February, and it’s starting out strong with a performance from Rihanna. I honestly can’t remember which company sponsored the Halftime Show before Pepsi, so it’ll be nice to see how Apple handles the show for Super Bowl LVII.


E
Twitter
Emma RothSep 25
Starlink is growing.

The Elon Musk-owned satellite internet service, which covers all seven continents including Antarctica, has now made over 1 million user terminals. Musk has big plans for the service, which he hopes to expand to cruise ships, planes, and even school buses.

Musk recently said he’ll sidestep sanctions to activate the service in Iran, where the government put restrictions on communications due to mass protests. He followed through on his promise to bring Starlink to Ukraine at the start of Russia’s invasion, so we’ll have to wait and see if he manages to bring the service to Iran as well.


E
External Link
Emma RothSep 25
We might not get another Apple event this year.

While Apple was initially expected to hold an event to launch its rumored M2-equipped Macs and iPads in October, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman predicts Apple will announce its new devices in a series of press releases, website updates, and media briefings instead.

I know that it probably takes a lot of work to put these polished events together, but if Apple does pass on it this year, I will kind of miss vibing to the livestream’s music and seeing all the new products get presented.


E
External Link
Emma RothSep 24
California Governor Gavin Newsom vetoes the state’s “BitLicense” law.

The bill, called the Digital Financial Assets Law, would establish a regulatory framework for companies that transact with cryptocurrency in the state, similar to New York’s BitLicense system. In a statement, Newsom says it’s “premature to lock a licensing structure” and that implementing such a program is a “costly undertaking:”

A more flexible approach is needed to ensure regulatory oversight can keep up with rapidly evolving technology and use cases, and is tailored with the proper tools to address trends and mitigate consumer harm.


Welcome to the new Verge

Revolutionizing the media with blog posts

Nilay PatelSep 13
A
Youtube
Andrew WebsterSep 24
Look at this Thing.

At its Tudum event today, Netflix showed off a new clip from the Tim Burton series Wednesday, which focused on a very important character: the sentient hand known as Thing. The full series starts streaming on November 23rd.


A
The Verge
Andrew WebsterSep 24
Get ready for some Netflix news.

At 1PM ET today Netflix is streaming its second annual Tudum event, where you can expect to hear news about and see trailers from its biggest franchises, including The Witcher and Bridgerton. I’ll be covering the event live alongside my colleague Charles Pulliam-Moore, and you can also watch along at the link below. There will be lots of expected names during the stream, but I have my fingers crossed for a new season of Hemlock Grove.


T
Twitter
Tom WarrenSep 23
Has the Windows 11 2022 Update made your gaming PC stutter?

Nvidia GPU owners have been complaining of stuttering and poor frame rates with the latest Windows 11 update, but thankfully there’s a fix. Nvidia has identified an issue with its GeForce Experience overlay and the Windows 11 2022 Update (22H2). A fix is available in beta from Nvidia’s website.