Usually January and February are very slow months for Apple releases. The company aims to release new hardware in time for the holiday season at the end of the year, keeping the first few months pretty dry until new products are introduced during the inevitable spring event around March.
This year it’s a little different. First, Apple continues to release new Services content, so Apple TV+ and Apple Arcade releases can still be expected, even if there are fewer than in recent months.
But more importantly, there’s the prospect of new Macs likely to arrive in the first quarter. We didn’t get an update for the Macbook Pro with M2 Pro/Max chips at the end of 2022, as expected, and the overdue M2 Mac mini didn’t arrive either. And we are still waiting for the introduction of Apple Silicon Mac Pro. At least some of these are rumored to be released in early 2023, perhaps at a March event.
With all the excitement and rumors about the Apple mixed reality headset potentially launching in the spring, the relatively tame processor updates for the Mac line could end up in a direct web release in January or February. Here’s what we expect from Apple this month.
Rumors of new hardware
Apple ended 2022 on a very quiet note. We expected a number of new Macs by the end of the year — an updated Mac mini, MacBook Pros with M2 Pro and Max chips, and the Mac Pro with Apple silicon — but the last few months of the year came and went with no new Macs , breaking a 21-year streak of launching or announcing a Mac in the fourth quarter.
We normally expect these new Macs to show up at a spring event, like last year when the Mac Studio debuted and in 2021 when we got the 24-inch iMac. But wait! The latest information on the long-rumored mixed-reality headset suggests Apple plans to unveil the device at an event this spring, so Apple may want to clear the slate so smaller announcements don’t take away from the buzz.
Since most Macs are rumored to be just processor upgrades with no other major design features, they could appear at any time via a press release on Apple.com, just like the iPad Pro and the 10th-generation iPad did last October. But since the original iPad event in 2010, Apple hasn’t typically launched any new products in January, with the most recent coming in 2013 when it announced a new 128GB version of the fourth-generation iPad.
App and software updates
Apple is in the middle of its sluggish software period, which has more or less delivered the key features of iOS and macOS. There are ongoing point releases containing minor features, bug fixes, and security enhancements, sometimes to support enhanced Services offerings.
iOS/iPadOS 16.3: Beta testing began in December, but with the holiday season delaying development, a final release could take until February. So far, the only major new feature is the ability to use a hardware security key for your Apple ID.
tvOS 16.3: To keep up with its iOS roots, tvOS is on the same beta path. It may only contain bug fixes and security updates.
macOS Ventura 13.2: As with iOS 16.3, support for physical security keys for Apple ID appears to be the only major new feature discovered so far.
watch OS 9.3: Currently, this version has no major new features and is primarily updated to keep pace with the iOS/macOS release cycle with any underlying bug fixes or security updates.
Here are the shows, series and movies we expect to release on Apple TV+ in TK. To find out what’s coming next, check out our full guide to upcoming Apple TV+ content.
Servant (season 4): Apple TV+’s first release is the final season of the thriller M. Night Shyamalan, coming out mid-month. January 13
Truth Be Told (season 3): The third season of this drama starring Octavia Spencer will be released later in January. January 20
Shrink: A new comedy about a grieving therapist who begins to break the rules and tell his clients exactly what he thinks. With Harrison Ford and Jason Segal. January 27
Apple releases new games for Apple Arcade on Friday, but not every Friday is dedicated to a new game or major update. For a full list of Apple Arcade games and more information about the service, check out our Apple Arcade FAQ. Some games are released without warning, but you will often see several projects listed in the Coming Soon section.
Episode XOXO: One of those teen drama life sim story games. 6 January
Illustrated: A dynamic jigsaw puzzle game that immerses you in illustrations and the stories behind them. January 13
Pocket Card Jockey: Ride On!: Solitaire meets cartoon horse racing! January 20
Squiggle drop: Draw shapes to solve unique physics puzzles. January 27