Microsoft started slow on Wednesday, but things picked up when Panos Panay took stage and showed off a brand new all-in-one desktop PC called the Surface Studio. Now, just one day later, it’s Apple’s turn to try to wow tech enthusiasts with its own look at the future of computing. Apple’s big iPhone 7 event this past September was obviously the highlight of the year for Apple fans, and the company’s iOS 10 unveiling to kick off WWDC 2016 in June was a close second. The company’s October event might not have generated quite as much buzz as either of those two earlier press conferences, but Apple’s Mac lineup is about to get its biggest refresh in years and fans can’t wait to see what’s in store.
Apple’s redesigned MacBook Pro is going to be the star of the show this time around, and for good reason. While the new laptop will look fairly similar to other Apple laptops from afar, a closer inspection reveals an awesome new “Magic Toolbar.” This nifty new feature replaces the keyboard’s top row of function keys with a long OLED touchscreen display. The display will feature 3D Touch to mimic button presses just like the home button on Apple’s iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, and it will also sport an integrated Touch ID fingerprint scanner for security and Apple Pay transaction authentication.
The Magic Toolbar display will change dynamically to show contextual information and buttons depending on which apps are being used at the time. So, for example, the OLED screen might show Photoshop’s tool buttons while the user is editing a photo, but it will switch to playback controls when Spotify is in the foreground. The MacBook Pro will come with either a 13-inch or 15-inch display, and it is also expected to feature improved specs highlighted by Intel’s latest-generation processors.
Thanks to a big leak ahead of Apple’s October event, you can see what the new MacBook Pro and Magic Toolbar look like right here in this post.
Other announcements are expected as well during Thursday’s big Apple press conference, of course. Rumor has it that there won’t be any new iMac computers unveiled today, and Apple’s long-awaited 5K Thunderbolt display will also be a no-show. The will reportedly be refreshed MacBook Air laptops unveiled during the event though, and rumor has it we’re also in store for some Apple TV news. Where the Apple TV is concerned though, it’s not yet known if we’ll see any new hardware (the old entry-level Apple TV was recently discontinued) or if Apple only has new software to show off.
Now that you know what’s in store, it’s time to watch all the big announcements live as they happen. Apple’s big event is set to kick off at 1:00 PM EDT / 10:00 AM PDT, and there are several different ways to watch.
On an iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, simply click this link to open the live stream in Safari. Apple requires that you’re running at least iOS 7.0 on your device in order for the stream to work. And if you’re on a Mac computer, you’ll need to have OS X 10.8.5 or later installed and the stream only works with Safari 6.0.5 or later, not any third-party browsers. Click this link in Safari to check out the live stream.
Second, third and fourth-generation Apple TVs will see the Apple Events app reappear on their home screens, and the event will be broadcast live inside that app. Last but not least, Windows 10 users can watch Tim Cook and his cohorts unveil the latest Windows rivals by clicking this link using the Microsoft Edge browser.