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iPhone 15 event reportedly being pre-recorded, but Apple should do live keynotes again

Published Aug 9th, 2023 10:10AM EDT
Last in-person Apple event: WWDC 2019
Image: José Adorno for BGR

Apple is expected to announce the iPhone 15 at its September event, scheduled to occur on the 12th or 13th. While this isn’t a surprise, Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman reports that the keynote is “being prepared as an in-person launch. So recorded video + people watching at the Apple campus + hands-on afterward. Same as the iPhone 14.”

That said, since WWDC 2022, when Apple started doing hybrid events, the company never held another live event. Although this new format adds more diversity and Apple staff to the spotlight, one of the fan-favorite things about Apple events was how naturally the presenters introduced the new products and features.

As a journalist, I covered press conferences in the most diverse places with different styles of keynotes and executives. Still, none of them offered the same experience as an Apple event. In 2019, I covered the last in-person WWDC in San Jose, California.

Being surrounded by developers from all over the world, international media, and Apple staff was indeed a once-in-a-lifetime experience. During the keynote, I saw developers cheering about the latest software updates and gasping when Apple introduced the all-new Mac Pro and the Pro Display XDR.

But it seems Apple prefers to move on from Steve Jobs-like keynotes to error-proof presentations that only a recorded video can bring. The events are faster, but they lose that special Apple touch only a live keynote could have.

In addition, inviting people to watch the keynote over Apple’s QG is annoying for those covering the event at the newsroom, as the event starts a little earlier for those in person. When Apple had live keynotes, everyone got the information simultaneously, even those streaming the event.

While Apple might prefer to be still extra cautious about COVID-19, this might mark the end of a live event era since the company’s CEO isn’t a showman as Steve Jobs was, and the other top executives that were in the spotlight of keynotes (I’m looking at you Craig) may be focusing on other plans inside the company, rather than holding a live presentation.

That said, the next Apple event, the one that should introduce the iPhone 15, will be similar to all the previous events: pretty, full of nice transitions, and lots of Apple staff presenting new features but lacking the excitement of a live keynote and a true live reaction from developers and the media.

José Adorno Tech News Reporter

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin America broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.