Apple, Inc. AAPL is all set to host its launch event, dubbed “Far Out” on Sept. 7.
The “Far Out” tagline against a cluster of stars in outer space seen in the invite could refer to it literally being far in the future, as Apple announced the event two weeks before it will take place, Bloomberg columnist Mark Gurman said in his weekly “Power On” newsletter.
A New Wallpaper: The space motif builds on a theme in iOS 16, he said, referring to the main new wallpaper sets for the updated lock screen being the Astronomy option. It included two views of the moon and one of the solar system, and when a user swipes through the different views, they can get a virtual look at space and stars, he added.
Satellite Capabilities: The space theme could be a reference to a satellite phone, Gurman said. He pointed to his report from over a year ago, in which he raised the possibility of Apple working on adding significant satellite capabilities to its devices.
This feature, according to Gurman, is designed to let users of compatible iPhones send SOS messages to first responders if they are in the mountains or at sea. A corresponding feature is designed to let iPhone users report emergencies such as boating accidents, plane crashes, and shootings in areas without cellular service, he added.
The Bloomberg reporter expects these features to give tough competition to stand-alone satellite-based devices, such as the Garmin Ltd. GRMN inReach.
“The combination of speedy 5G networks and satellite service could one day turn the iPhone into the most powerful global communications device available,” he said.
Enhanced Photography: A third possibility is that Apple could be hinting at enhanced photography capabilities or a feature that could rival Alphabet, Inc Google GOOG-owned Google’s long-existing astrophotography mode, Gurman said.
The company may also announce a new version of the iPhone’s night mode, which was first unveiled in 2019, he added.
Always On Mode: The lit-up stars at night could represent the upcoming “always on” mode, the Apple specialist said.
Gurman expects the iPhone 14 Pro to get improvements to its video recording capabilities and a 48-megapixel camera on the back. However, more significant upgrades, including a better telephoto lens for hardware-based zooming, may not be announced until next year, he added.
Apple closed Friday’s session down 3.77% at $163.62, according to Benzinga Pro data.