After a year 2022 full of news, but without major upheavals, the year 2023 may be more refreshing for the new technology sector. In this article, Numerama summarizes the rumors about the main big brands.
What will we remember from 2022? If the year was rich in technological innovations, it is clear that no one will want to mark its time. Rather, the most striking events in recent months are Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter and the arrival of new forms of artificial intelligence, such as ChatGPT. New products take a back seat for once.
Will 2023 be better? Although the threat of an economic crisis may suggest that brands will remain prudent, many of them should still launch in new categories. Enough to predict a much more favorable balance at the end of the year.
Apple, finally the year of the mixed reality headset?
As every year, Apple is the most anticipated brand. It’s normal, Apple has the incredible power to dictate what the industry should do. Whether you like Apple or not, this phenomenon is impossible to miss. When the Californian company does something, its competitors try to do the same. It is systematic.
What to expect from Apple in 2023? According to rumors, here is the list of products that the brand will announce in the coming months. We’ll start with the classics they all could predict:
- That iPhone 15presumably with a USB-C port and a new Ultra model with periscopic zoom.
- L’Apple Watch Series 9 andApple Watch Ultra Series 2.
- New, more powerful revisions of iPad.
- Updates to iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS.
- New Macs with more powerful chips (M2 Pro, M2 Ultra, M3, etc.), starting with MacBook Pro 14 and 16 inches, then the first Mac Pro without Intel.
If all this is classic, we also expect Apple in new sectors in 2023. This is where Apple’s year could be interesting:
- After several years of rumours, Apple could reveal his Reality helmet dedicated to mixed reality. This could be a big announcement that would propel the industry into a new era.
- The connected home could be in the spotlight with new versions of HomePod including a model with a screen and a webcam for making calls.
- For the first time, Apple could launch a large MacBook Air with a 15 inch screen.
Apple’s headset is highly anticipated, as it would push the brand to launch a new operating system and pave the way for augmented reality, which Apple has been a big believer in for several years. If this announcement happens in 2023, it could be the most important of the year.
Samsung, renewals or innovations?
Samsung is a brand that does many, many things. Smartphones, tablets, computers, refrigerators, ovens, televisions, sound bars… Koreans are everywhere. Predicting its year 2023 is extremely complicated as Samsung has a habit of launching hundreds of products every year. It is therefore better to take an interest in the big trends.
Samsung has been criticized for some time for being less innovative. Will the Korean surprise again in 2023? Although there are areas where innovation may be limited in 2023 (QD-OLED TV is already here and we doubt that microLED will become affordable all at once), Samsung might surprise us in some categories at the end of the year:
- At CES in early January, Samsung had to talk a lot about the home. In addition to new home appliances, the Matter standard, which brings together the connected home, should be in the spotlight. Will there be new products that are compatible with all ecosystems?
- At the beginning of February, the new smartphone season is expected to be launched by Samsung. That Galaxy S23, S23+ and S23 Ultra should be minor revisions of their predecessors. One of the notable changes would be the abandonment of Samsung Exynos chips in favor of the more reliable Qualcomm Snapdragon. They could also innovate on the image with a 200 Mpix sensor.
- Throughout the year, Samsung is expected to steadily launch more affordable products. As he usually does.
- This summer we logically expect new folding smartphones. After a very successful Galaxy Z Fold 4, but very close to previous models, Samsung must respond. The arrival of Chinese players such as Oppo and Vivo could push the Korean to release new, more sophisticated models. We also expect Samsung on other products, such as tablets or folding computers.
- Finally, what about virtual and mixed reality? A groundbreaking time, Samsung has left this market. According to some rumors, the Korean brand would be launched a mixed reality headset in 2023, just to not leave Meta and Apple too quiet.
Meta, a Quest 3 to make mixed reality affordable?
Meta is not doing very well, as evidenced by the layoff of 11,000 employees. Facebook’s parent company has also closed most of its hardware divisions, such as the one responsible for Portal displays/speakers. Social networks and the metaverse are at the center of his concerns.
In 2023, however, there should be a significant announcement from Mark Zuckerberg and his team. After the ultra-popular Quest 2 virtual reality headset in the US (449 euros) and the extremely promising but ultra-expensive Quest Pro mixed reality headset (1799 euros), Meta had to offer a hybrid product between these two objects.
The only product really expected at Meta in 2023 is Quest 3, the sequel to Quest 2 with color cameras so you can see the real world without removing it (Quest 2 settles for black and white). To cut the prices of mixed reality, Meta will certainly make material concessions. It’s hard to imagine the Quest Pro controllers and eye-tracking surviving this consumer product.
Oppo is no longer afraid of the high end
Gradually, Oppo rises. Known to the general public for partnerships with world-renowned events (Roland Garros, Champions League, etc.), the Chinese brand has proven several times that it is able to compete with Samsung and Apple. Find X5 Pro, its smartphone released in early 2022, is undoubtedly the most compelling of the year.
In 2023, Oppo is expected to assume its status as a high-end Chinese brand even more (it somehow takes Huawei’s position, held back by the US). Although it knows that it will not sell as many as its 200-300 euro products, Oppo has already announced that it will launch a competitor to Samsung’s foldable Galaxy Z Flip at the start of the year. The Chinese brand, which offers augmented reality glasses in China, also stood out with its drop-screen smartphone. Will it be released this year?
Google, finally a foldable smartphone?
What about Google, whose material ambitions we don’t yet fully understand? The Pixel 7 is excellent, but the company still seems far from competing with the top 5 sellers. His way of announcing products months before their announcement is also very surprising.
In 2023, here are the products expected at Google:
- News on the page smart home : The emergence of Matter may push Google to renew its Nest speakers and launch new generations of its accessories with the wire standard.
- Some new smartphones : Pixel 8, Pixel 8 Pro and Pixel 7a are logically expected in autumn 2023.
- News watch : after a very disappointing Pixel Watch, can Google release a more powerful and more durable product?
- The tablet Pixel tablet : announced in mid-2022, it was supposed to launch in 2023. Until then, we can only hope that Google improves its design to make it truly competitive.
- Finally, after two years of rumors, Google was going to launch one Pixel Fold folding screen. Its design should take it from the Galaxy Z Fold, namely a tablet capable of folding in half.
Xiaomi, the return of low prices?
Wang Xiang, the president of Xiaomi stepped down at the end of 2022. After a complicated period (Covid played a bad trick on Xiaomi), the Chinese brand wants to reinvent itself to gain market share and get back on track. Ultra popular in France, Xiaomi is counting on William Lu, its vice president in charge of the low-cost Redmi division, to take over. In light of the designated personality, logic would dictate that Xiaomi refocus on the entry level by continuing to lower prices.