Apple Mum On Rumored TV Set


Apple used the opening session of its Worldwide Developers Conference Monday to announce new notebooks and the next generation of its iOS mobile operating system -- but the tech giant did not shed any light on the much-rumored TV set it is supposedly developing.

Wall Street analysts and bloggers have been abuzz for months about a top-secret Apple HDTV, which some suggest would radically alter the media landscape (see this week's cover story, Behind Apple's TV Mystery).

Instead, Apple's announcements Monday included:

* New ultraportable MacBook Air and high-end MacBook Pro notebooks, including a MacBook Pro model with the high-resolution Retina display with more than 5 million pixels. The Retina display is used in the latest iPhones and the third-generation iPad.

* iOS 6, with more than 200 new features added to the software that powers iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devices, including a Maps app with "Apple-designed cartography" (rather than Google's) and turn-by-turn navigation, and Facebook integration for contacts and calendar. The iOS 6 update will be available to device users this fall.

* Enhancements to the Siri voice-recognition service, including its extension to the new iPad; additional language support and localized information for 15 countries; and the ability to use Siri to update Facebook status, post to Twitter or launch an app.

* OS X Mountain Lion, which also features 200-plus additional features including the a new Messages app, Facebook integration, dictation support, AirPlay Mirroring and built-in support for Apple's iCloud service. The Mountain Lion upgrade, Apple's ninth generation of desktop OS, will be available in July as a download from the Mac App Store.

Apple also touted that the iTunes App Store now has more than 650,000 apps (of which 225,000 are specifically designed for the iPad).

About 5,000 people are attending Apple's WWDC 2012, being held at San Francisco's Moscone Center this week. The conference features more than 100 technical sessions led by the company's engineers as well as the Apple Design Awards, a showcase of the most outstanding apps from the past year.