Apple 2024 Product Roadmap

We have a dedicated page to track those announcements and expectations, do read them from time to time. From the looks of it, Apple isn’t going to change much in terms of their playbook, because after all, they make more than a billion dollars a week using that playbook.

2023 was a very eventful year for Apple. From the surprise release of new Macs in January, bringing USB-C to iPhone, and the creation of a new computing paradigm, spatial computing, aka Vision Pro. We see what 2024 will bring for Apple and the rest of us.

Major Themes

The major theme that Apple will undoubtedly push for 2024 undoubtedly will be spatial computing. They have planted the seeds in 2023 and will sow it for 2024. First by introducing the product itself, Vision Pro, although no one can buy it, thus creating the buzz. Second, by adding ecosystem features you’ll need a Vision Pro to use it, like allowing recording spatial videos on the iPhone, but needing a Vision Pro to view the video. And 3rd, by announcing a new family of M3 chips that of course going to power the Vision Pro.

Apple is looking for new markets to dominate. Right now, the iPhone is what paying Apple’s rent like how Windows and Office paid for Microsoft’s rent in the 90s and 00s. Microsoft evolved and Azure, a cloud computing platform, is now the main revenue driver for Microsoft, so Apple will try to create a new revenue stream via spatial computing.

After setting up the main theme of the year, Apple will cruise along to ensure nothing will rock the boat. Of course, there will be challengers that will try to rock the moat like Google pushing for RCS or someone that has a hacky way of doing things like Beeper Mini. And you can expect a multi-trillion dollar company like Apple will take all its power to stop it.

Apple Events

As it has become a tradition now, Apple will make a major announcement through a media event for every season of the year. The most important season of course is Fall where they will unveil the iPhone just in time for the all important holiday shopping season, but there’s a lot of build up to reach the climax.

* Will be periodically updated based on latest info
Season Month Expected items to be showcased* Actual Event Date What actually happened.
Spring January or March M3 on Mac Mini, MacBook Air, iPad Pro, possibly iPad Air. Vision Pro officially released with M3 chip. New iPhone colors in March January 8 Vision Pro availability. Press release only.
Summer June Apple ecosystem preview. Major focus on spatial computing. Mac Studio and Mac Pro with M3 Ultra. Possible M3 Extreme?
Fall September iPhone 16, iPhone 16 Pro, Apple Watch Series 10, and AirPods updates.
Winter October M4 family unveiled. Updated MacBook Pro. Lower cost Apple Vision as October surprise.

Product Update

Q1: New M3 Macs, Vision Pro officially launched.


Vision Pro should be released in Q1 2024. Expected tweaks will be the M3 chip instead of the M2 which was introduced in WWDC '23

The M3 will come to the rest of Macs and iPads like the Mac Mini.

We expect Apple to officially sell the Vision Pro with some tweaks. The M2 that was introduced in WWDC will obviously updated to the newer M3 chip because the M3 is energy efficient and obviously more powerful than the M2. The M3, despite being the base chip in the M3 family, has more computing power than the M1 Max.

We expect Apple to expand the M3 family to run on updated MacBook Air and Mac Mini. Apple might update the iPad family at this point to run the M3 chip.

Q2: WWDC, M3 Ultra, Spatial computing updates, Apple’s push to gaming


In WWDC, expect Apple will push more on spatial computing.

Mac Studio should be updated in with the M3 Ultra. Maybe Apple will finally put the often rumored M3 Ultra on the Mac Pro?

Apple traditionally hosts the Worldwide Developer’s Conference (WWDC) in June at Apple HQ and this year will be no different. I expect that Apple will push more features in the spatial computing area to make Vision Pro the product that you want to get.

We should get the updated Mac Studio and Mac Pro with the M3 Ultra chip. No word if we are going to get the often rumored M3 Extreme chip that would be a Mac Pro exclusive.

Apple has been trying to make gaming on Apple a thing. They are quite successful with mobile gaming (a 30% cut on every transaction sure help it) and there’s a great possibility to push it on other platforms like Mac and Apple TV.

Q3: iPhone event


September will always be that iPhone event for Apple. Expect iPhone 16, iPhone 16 Pro and other accessories updates.

Maybe we get lossless update on the AirPods Max?

September is the most important event for Apple because it will showcase Apple’s most important product: the iPhone. And we expect a lot of iPhone 15 Pro features like the larger camera sensor, the A17 Pro chip will eventually go to the base iPhone 16. The iPhone 16 Pro will continually be honed to be a professional tool with better cameras, more sensors, and more exotic materials.

We also expect other products that are centered around the iPhone like the Apple Watch, the AirPods will be updated in this event.

Q4: M4 family, Macs update, October surprise?


Apple should unveil the M4 family for the October surprise.

October will be the final push for Apple before the holiday shopping season begins. Here Apple will update Apple Silicon with the M4 family which will be on the MacBook Pros. The iPads might be updated at this event or in January.

Since 2024 will be an election year, will there be an October surprise? Since Apple started the spatial computing fight with the Vision Pro, I expect that Apple will launch a lower-end version of the Vision product. After all, the biggest hurdle of the Vision Pro is the high barrier of entry at $3,500. Apple will have to eventually bring down the product to a $2,000 level to make it more mass-appeal.

We have a dedicated page to track those announcements and expectations, do read them from time to time. From the looks of it, Apple isn’t going to change much in terms of their playbook, because after all, they make more than a billion dollars a week using that playbook.


Expect the iPhone 16 will be more of the same while the iPhone 16 Pro will push even further of what's possible. There could be a name change to iPhone 16 Ultra.
  • Prediction: Apple bread and butter, and best selling product Apple ever made will be updated in September. Despite Apple’s push for spatial computing, the iPhone and the ecosystem it represents will remain Apple’s most important product for years to come.

iPhone 16 predictions

The iPhone 16 is a base iPhone that Apple made for the everyman. So it’s not going to have the best features. It will have the features that normal non-techie people find important. Contrary to what is written on X (formally Twitter) or Youtube by those tech influencers, those things are not 120Hz refresh rate or OLED screen or a brighter screen. Those are invisible things we take for granted like access to the Apple ecosystem, iMessage, and easy listening to music.

However, we expect a few features that were introduced in iPhone 15 Pro will make their way to the next iPhone 16 which include:-

  • Action Button: The silent switch is a great innovation from Apple. I think Apple will want to expand the least-use button like the silent switch and use the Action Button because it opens up new opportunities for Apple.
  • A17 Pro: A17 Pro might come to the base iPhone not because it brings more power at hand, that’s not the first case, but enables more powerful games to run on the iPhone 15. Apple might not be the first thing to come to mind when it comes to gaming, but Apple makes billions of dollars from mobile gaming thanks to the App Store and Apple Arcard. Recently, the court of law decided that Apple’s App Store is not a monopoly so expect Apple to capitalize on that to the fullest.
  • Larger main camera sensor: Apple put a new 48MP sensor on the base iPhone 15, which was first introduced in the iPhone 14 Pro. Apple might do the same for the iPhone 16.

iPhone 16 Pro predictions

For the iPhone 16 Pro, Apple will hone more impressive features to make it the ultimate tool for businesspeople and content creators. So here are some of the features that we expect to arrive:-

  • More powerful A18 Pro chip to handle more video signals The chip will need to be more powerful if Apple aims to have real-time performance when processing 48MP signals through all its sensors.
  • Large image sensors on wide and telephoto sensors: Not only it will bring more Corp possibilities, but also enable 8K video capture. A 48MP sensor on the telephoto lens will make it possible to have an optical 10x corp (which is still a 12 MP picture)
  • 8K video capture: Currently, the main sensor can capture videos in 8K, however, the wide and ultra-wide sensors are still limited to 4K captures only. If Apple uses 48MP sensors like in the main sensor, then 8K video capture throughout the zoom length is possible.
  • Haptic buttons: To improve durability and also to make the iPhone internals hermetically sealed, the buttons might change to haptic buttons.
  • eSims only: eSIM-only iPhones are now for the US. If Apple manages to push for global adaptation of eSIM, this will release significant real estate in the iPhone internals, which is a precious commodity.

Most of the changes will be in the software department instead of the design department. The big hope that the iPadOS will finally meet its full potential as a viable laptop replacement
  • Prediction: Apple will finally update the iPad lineup. Everything will have a USB-C port on it. iPad Pro will have the M3, iPad Air will have the M2, iPad 11 and Mini will have the latest A-series chip.

None of the iPads were updated in 2023, so it’s a logical outcome that Apple will update the entire lineup in 2024. So it’s just a question of when. The most likely outcome would be in Q1 or Q2.

As each of the different iPads goes to a totem pole, we believe that the iPad Pro will sport the new M3 chip, the iPad Air will have the M2 chip, and the base iPad plus the iPad Mini will have the latest A-series chip from Apple. With this update, the entire iPad will have a USB-C port as the sole connector.

The problem with the iPad of today is there is a very good content consumption device, but not really there yet for productivity. And Apple did try to update iPadOS to become more productive like launching Logic Pro and Final Cut Pro for the iPad. However, still not on par with macOS. Apple seems to be content to have full customization in macOS while letting their other OSes be as locked down as possible. With visionOS coming in early 2024, we hope that Apple will change its stance.


Line up as of Jun 2023. The transition is complete with no Intel Mac in sight. Only the iMac is running the 1st generation Apple Silicon.

Prediction: Apple will continue to update Apple Silicon with an emphasis on graphics and AI workflows.

Apple Silicon has been a godsend for Apple. Not only does it bestow Apple vertical control on the Mac, but it also allows Apple to create unique products which they can charge a premium for. Apple Silicon is the cumulation of the continuous effort to create unique products which started when they think about the first iPad where they launched the first Apple-designed silicon, the A4.

M3 Ultra

Apple is expected to update the Mac Studio during WWDC ‘24. It’s expected that the new Mac Studio will feature the M3 Max and the M3 Ultra, which are two M3 Max fused as a single chip. Based on the M3 Max, the M3 Ultra will have up to 256 GB of memory support, up to 32 CPU cores, up to 80 GPU cores, and two Neural engines which translates around 32 cores dedicated to neural networks. This is an insane chip which way to powerful than 99.9% of users around there.

M4 family and beyond

Based on 2023 trends, Apple Silicon will be updated in late 2024 with the M4 family. Details are scarce right now but intuitive thinking is that Apple will have a refined version of 3nm nodes with 2nm nodes reserved in 2025. Graphics will certainly be upgraded because that’s where Apple Silicon is weakest compared to Nvidia, but having raw power with a self-imposed limited power budget will be no easy feat.


Prediction: Apple will release the Vision Pro in January/March event with updated M3. Finger-crossed if we get a lower price “Vision” at the end of the year.

Vision is Apple’s new product line that aim to tackle an emerging market called spatial computing. Apple first product, the Vision Pro, is Apple’s first attempt to capture this market.

While unveiled in WWDC 2023, Vision Pro was not available during the unveiling. Apple said during WWDC 2023 that the Vision Pro will be available “early” 2024. Now that 2024 is settling in, here are our expectations

  • M3 on the Vision Pro: When it was unveiled in late June 2024, the M3 was around 4 months away from official launch. Now that the M3 family has been unveiled, it is expected that Apple is going to put M3 on the new product because the M3 is significantly more efficient and performant than the M2.
  • Lower-cost model: It was curious to see Apple introduce the product Vision Pro. In Apple’s lineup, the “Pro” moniker always tells a higher performing, but more expensive version in the product tier. It is expected that Apple will eventually unveil “The Vision” which is a lower-cost but capable product for mass-market appeal.

Right now, the major issue with Vision Pro is the price and actual user case that makes it a superior choice to other products in the Apple line-up.


If Apple is following the watch industry playbook, expect Apple to hold the base Apple Watch design while having flashy 'professional' watches like Apple Watch Ultra
  • Prediction: Expect the same design and a few more features for the series 10. The glucose measurement function might be dropped if the patent dispute is not resolved.

Apple Watch is the most valuable watch in the industry and Apple will do everything it can to maintain that. However, it’s a very mature product since you can do so much in a little package. Apple might make a more “professional” version of the Apple Watch Ultra like how Rolex does with their line.

However, there are some headwinds in the Apple Watch domination. In October US International Trade Commission ruled that Apple violated some of Masimo’s patents on glusoce monitoring which resulted in Apple being banned from selling the Apple Watch series 9 and Apple Watch Ultra 2 in the US. If Masimo could take the ruling to other countries like the EU and China, it would have a significant impact on Apple. So worst-case scenario is that series 10 might have this feature deactivated.

People speculate that Apple might have a newer design for the next Apple Watch but in the watch world, watchmakers rarely update designs, they just update the style. Take Rolex for example, the Datejust design can be traced back as far as 1945. But Rolex tweaks the design here and there every year but the main design is pretty much the same.


The most intangible product that Apple made is now the second biggest contributor to Apple's bottom line. Expect Apple to look more ways to make money from this segment especially in this economic downturn.
  • Prediction: As a growing segment, of course Apple is looking for areas of growth. So expect better programming, more options and possibly new services.

Apple services has grown from an afterthought to the 2nd biggest contributor to Apple revenue base. So it is expected that Apple will continue to push to grow this segment of Apple business with new features and offerings.


The most fun segment of Apple's business where Apple constantly looking ways to make fun and functional products which could turn out to be a hit.

Prediction: AirPods updated to USB-C cases in conjunction with iPhone 15 / iPhone 15 Pro. AirPods Max might follow suit. Pro Display XDR was cutting-edge when it was introduced, but now it’s just another high-end display. Apple TV with an A17 Pro chip that can play AAA games can be a serious threat to PS5 and Xbox.

AirPods


AirPods Max haven't been updated to the USB-C

When Apple launched the iPhone 15 family which featured the USB-C port, Apple updated the cases for AirPods and AirPods Pro to USB-C. EarPods also have a USB-C option (in addition to a 3.5mm and Lighting port option). So right now, the odd man out is AirPods Max. The AirPods Max still uses Lighting Port for charging, does not support lossless audio despite the high price point and Apple hasn’t updated the AirPods Max since 2020. So the AirPods Max is due for an update.

Music & TV


An Apple TV 4K with A17 Pro chip that can play the same games as the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X will be an existential threat.

In the world of streamboxes, AppleTV stands out in terms of responsiveness, performance, and price. AppleTV is one of Apple’s grand strategies to grab a bigger piece of the $52 billion pie that we call the gaming industry in the USA. The A17 Pro, introduced in the iPhone 15 Pro, can play AAA games designed for consoles like the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X. And current Apple devices can support 3rd party console controller pads like the Playstation, Xbox, and even Nintendo Switch controller.

Now imagine if Apple put that A17 Pro chip on the Apple TV 4K. You can have a controller that can play what the Playstation5 or Xbox plays but for less than half the price.

Displays


There's a big price gap between Studio Display and the Pro Display XDR. Maybe Apple can fill that gap?

The Pro Display XDR was cutting edge when it was introduced but the high $4,999 price is a turn-off for many. The $1,299 Studio Display is a good alternative but does not satisfy the needs of professionals. What if Apple manage to create a 6K display but half the price of Pro Display XDR?