Leaks from a reliable Apple Bloomberg source Mark Gurman have revealed plans from Apple to release a new external Mac monitor that can offer features when the main system is powered off. Even without access to the main controlling Mac hardware, this display can reportedly act as a smart home display. Though this potential would be helpful, it also illustrates further possibilities in what could be the next natural step for computer monitor hardware.
Apple’s New Displays
Though we don’t yet have any official announcements on monitors that will provide this new form of always-on functionality, they will likely appear as upgrades in the Pro Display XDR and Studio Display line. The new functionality will come from hardware chips similar to simplified ones used in other Apple devices like the iPhone range. If offered as an alternative, prices for these new monitors will likely be higher, but by how much remains in question.
Potential Beyond Smart-home Systems
Though some users could be excited about the smart-home possibilities of these monitors, there are many of us out there for whom smart-home tech is not used. This doesn’t mean that the new features of these rumored monitors would be wasted, however. To offer support for a broad range of smart home systems, the included processors within this monitor would require a widely-accessible operating system, likely to be the upcoming iOS 17.
The addition of a standard Apple operating system and Apple’s trademark focus on a smooth experience, plus touchscreen functionality, will likely mean other touch-screen software is supported too. Essentially, this means the monitor could double up as a larger mobile or tablet display. While it will probably not be as powerful as an iPhone or iPad, there are many uses for which it could still excel.
Browsing the internet and watching online videos are the most likely example, as these uses require little processing power. The monitor would act as kind of a fusion between a tablet and smart TV, covering a middle ground that hasn’t so far been served by the market. Of course, a user could also just switch on the connected Mac and do things that way, but by keeping the computer itself turned off, the monitor would use considerably less power, which is always a plus for green-focused households.
In terms of more interactive online uses, online entertainment would be a big sector that could grow with the help of new tech. Web experiences like casino roulette online would be the forms of gaming that could benefit the most. These are built to cover a wide range of system specs on mobiles, so titles like French and European Roulette would run without compromises to quality. They also require little data, and offer full touch support, making them perfect fits for what these new monitors could offer.
As always, Apple tends to raise the bar even with predicted devices, so we have to wonder what else these new rumored systems could accomplish that we haven’t yet considered. Smart functionality on monitors like these is arriving at a time when smart TVs have been established for years, so Apple’s likely learned a lot from where these succeed and where they fall short. While we also recommend caution when it comes to new tech, this is at least one potential project we’ll be watching closely.