You're probably busy tonight. Got mates round. A comfy night on the sofa with Great British Bake Off. Either way, you don't fancy spending some two hours watching Apple's big news event drag on. So - based on reading analyst predictions, sifting through rumours and having a good old guess - we thought we'd save you the hassle of watching and predict the whole thing. This is how we think it'll pan out...
At 18:00 BST, Tim Cook walks on to the Bill Graham Civic hall stage to the sound of thunderous applause and barely contained jubilation.
Cook will wave. He will talk – assisted by some minimalist slides - about what a grand year it has been for Apple – a period that has seen it sell its one billionth iPhone, seen the launch of health apps, a new iPhone SE and a bunch of other stuff we’ve all completely forgotten about.
He might even mention Apple’s commitment to a global audience, of its relationship with the likes of Ireland and Europe, of how it's set to build stronger ties with the likes of China. It will be a bit dull, and you'll wonder when the fun stuff starts.
Tim Cook will then shift his tone, addressing the assembled minions and all the many millions watching around the world that the next year is set to be even bigger, and that he’s so very glad you are all here to see what Apple has in store.
He’ll invite someone you’ve never heard of up on to the stage to introduce Apple’s first product announcement. She will stride forward, thank Cook, and launch into a brief history of the Mac.
Slides will fill us with nostalgia as we are led through iterations of Apple’s key computer; an off-grey lump of plastic transforming into a curved hull of transparent colour, culminating in its most recent slender visage. The Apple spokesperson will then declare that they’ve made the iMac even better, and introduce the new iMac. It looks largely the same. The screen is now 6K. The processors are even more powerful. The graphics card is super good. A designer may be invited along to describe how incredible it is to work with the new iMac, and how excited they are for all of you to give it a try. It will cost upwards of £2,000 and be available for preorder as of today. We will all want one.
“But that’s not all”, the Apple spokesperson will tell us. From the iMac, we will segue effortlessly into Apple’s other Mac flagship, the MacBook. For this, Cook may be invited back onto the stage with the new MacBook Pro.
On scuttles Cook, proudly carrying a new silver Pro like a father cradling his infant child. He waits for the applause to die down, a content grin quivering on his lips. “This is the new MacBook Pro,” he reiterates. It’s thinner, now sporting USB Type-C ports, a better battery and an even lighter design. “But this is the really cool part”, he’ll say, opening up the laptop to reveal a new touch-screen function display; a small strip sitting where the function keys (F1, F2, you know the sort) would usually belong, now replaced by a glowing OLED panel.
“We wanted to give users more control over how they use their MacBook Pro. Now, if I’m listening to my iTunes library, my MacBook Pro will display controls specific to that program. InDesign? No problem, all my own shortcuts will be accessible as soon as I switch to it,” he says, switching programs and showing off the seamless transition on the new touch display. “How about Microsoft Office tools?” The audience will give a pantomime mutter of unrest at the mention of the great enemy. “We’ve all grown up using ‘Control C’ and ‘Control V’ – but now I’ve got my own copy and paste buttons sitting right there on my MacBook Pro.”
The slides will then shift to explain where the new MacBook Pro fits in Apple’s overall lineup of MacBooks. We’ll be treated to an array of stats and figures, some nice sexy shots of the new internals of the Pro, and finally price details – starting at just shy of £2,000. It will be available for pre-order later today. We will all want one.
For the next section, someone who we’ve apparently met before but can’t quite recall is going to tell us about some exciting new developments with the Apple Watch.
The someone who we’ve apparently met before but can’t quite recall will walk onto the stage, waving at the crowd. Their sleeve will be rolled down, displaying what looks altogether like the old Apple Watch. But no, this isn’t the old Apple Watch, it’s the new one – the Apple Watch 2 that now features an improved battery, a better screen, a slightly slimmer design and a speedier internal processor. We won’t know why, but we’ll all feel silly that we don’t already own an Apple Watch, as we’re told that X-million have been sold since the timepiece was launched two years ago.
“But that’s not all,” the someone who we’ve apparently met before but can’t quite recall will tell us. He will then produce “The new Apple Watch 2 Pro” from his pocket, inspiring renewed excitement from the audience. It’s a touch bigger than the Apple Watch 2, with a larger screen. The spokesperson will describe its improved GPS functions, its 4G connectivity, allowing you to leave your iPhone at home should you want to go out but not lose connection from your digital life. It’s got a battery that will last a full day, and a variety of new apps are coming that will change how you use the Apple Watch. We will all want one.
Tim Cook will walk back on to the stage, thanking the spokesperson. Cook is immensely proud of the Apple Watch, and can't wait for us all to try the new Apple Watch 2.
“You might have heard about the next announcement we’ve got,” he’ll say with a sly smile. Knowing chuckles will be shared amongst the audience members, all aware of the steady line of leaked iPhone news that has filled the Internet since late 2015. “But now I finally get to introduce you to our latest model of the iPhone… The iPhone 7.”
Cook will pull the new handset from his pocket. It’s exactly the same as the various different blurred photos that leaked to Chinese tech forums back in January 2016. It's roughly the same size as the current iPhone 6S, but the antenna lines now run along the upper and lower edge of the case. The model Cook is holding is gold. The camera lens is a touch larger. The home button no longer has a prominent indentation. Most importantly, there is no longer a 3.5mm headphone hole running along its lower edge.
Cook will wait for the applause to die down before launching into the major upgrades of the new handset. The screen is sharper. The camera is better than ever – both rear and front. The A10 processor is more powerful, and kinder to the battery. But the major change is to the audio.
“We believe that this is the best sounding smartphone ever made,” Cook will explain. By ditching the 3.5mm headphone hole to play audio from the iPhone’s Lightning port, a higher quality of music will be available, the sharpest audio experience ever offered by an iPhone. An adaptor for ‘old’ 3.5mm headphones will be included with every handset, says Cook, but a new line of iPhone headphones is where it’s at. For this, Cook will invite someone from Beats – formerly of Dr Dre fame – to introduce the new headphone line.
The Beats spokesperson, dressed in a casual t-shirt, jeans and Nike trainers, will swagger onto stage with a new set of headphones around his neck. He will reiterate the improved audio supplied by the Lightning connecter, how much better these new headphones sound compared to 3.5mm headphones.
“But say you want to cut lose for a while, maybe do a lap of the park – you’ll want these,” says the Beats guy, pulling out a small cylinder from which he produces two tiny pods. These are the new wireless Beats Buds – waterproof, sweat proof earpieces that connect to the iPhone 7 via Bluetooth. We may cut away from the stage to have a well known American athlete tell us about how awesome the Buds are, going into detail about how they track their heart rate, giving them data they need to improve their performance and have a better workout. We will all want them.
As the video finishes we find that Tim Cook has walked back out on stage for one final reveal. “We know that iPhone users love taking photos,” he’ll whittle. We’ll be treated to an array of stunning shots from iPhone users, beautiful landscapes and joyful children frolicking with puppies. “So we decided to make an iPhone for all you photographers out there.”
He will then reveal the new iPhone 7 Pro – a larger iteration with an even more prominent camera lens sticking from its rear. It owes this budge to not one but two lenses, the specifics of which Cook will proudly explain. It gives better depth to shots. It captures more light. It produces more detail. It can record video in stunning 4K. It’s the best camera Tim Cook has ever seen on a smartphone. We will all want one.
Cook will then get down to the nitty gritty of explaining where the new iPhones and headphones fit in Apple’s product line up. Slides will explain that the iPhone SE is now cheaper, while the iPhone 7 costs around £550 and the Pro a £680. The Lightning Beats cost somewhere in the region of £120, while the Buds are nearly £200. They are all available for pre order today.
Tim Cook looks thoroughly content now, like a man who has just finished an extremely enjoyable meal with some of his closest family friends. He will beam at the audience and thank them for being able to join Apple for this event. He’ll mention that the lucky few gathered in the room will all be able to get their hands on the devices at the after party. For those watching at home, he’ll bid them a fond farewell.
The crowd will cheer, music will play, Tim Cook will wave and we’ll close our Safari browser. We won’t really remember any of the individual gadgets we’ve just seen with any great clarity, their details blurred into a wash of stats and numbers.
We just know, deep down, that we want all of them.