‘It’s Been Way Too Long’: What Apple’s Invite Likely Means

Oct 16 Event Apple

Apple issued invites to members of the press for its upcoming media event on Thursday, October 16 at the Town Hall auditorium on its Cupertino-based campus. The tagline for the invite was “it’s been way too long,” leading many to speculate as to what Apple could potentially be hinting at with this message. We have a possible explanation ahead.

First and foremost, the tagline could very much just be a tongue-in-cheek reference to how Apple just had its most recent media event for the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, Apple Watch and Apple Pay in September. But, for those that are adamant that Apple is talking in code, the tagline could mean that some products are long overdue for an update.

When you think of Apple products that have not been part of the refresh cycle for quite some time, a handful of devices come to mind: the Mac mini, iPod touch and Apple TV. But while the Mac mini and iPod touch received modest hardware improvements around two years ago, the Apple TV hasn’t received a truly significant update since 2010.

Apple did release the second- and third-generation Apple TV over the past two consecutive years, but each new set-top box was marginally improved over the one ahead of it. As a whole, the user interface and overall experience of the Apple TV has not changed much in over four years. Hence the “it’s been way too long” tagline on the invite.

In a recent interview on The Charlie Rose Show last month, Apple CEO Tim Cook shared some passionate comments about how the current TV experience is over four decades outdated. Yet, when asked if Apple would fix this problem, Cook remained unsurprisingly tight-lipped and said that it’s an area that his company continues to look at.

There have been a myriad of rumors circulating over the past several years about Apple working on an HDTV set that would revolutionize the living room, although activist investor Carl Icahn and other analysts have predicted that we won’t hear any announcements about that product for at least another one to two years.

In fact, we might not hear anything about the Apple TV after all. But even a long overdue update to the Mac mini would be a worthwhile product refresh that a number of devoted customers to the entry-level Mac have long been waiting for. Apple last updated the Mac mini in October 2012 with faster Intel processors and quad-core options.

It has been rumored that Apple will launch a new Mac mini alongside new iPads and the public release of OS X Yosemite at its October 16 event. The Mac mini is the cheapest Apple computer that you can buy, and often serves as a gateway product to other Macs like the MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, iMac and Mac Pro, so it is definitely deserving of some attention. In exactly one week, we will find out for sure.

What announcements are you anticipating the most?