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iPhone Event Retrospective (2021)

11th September 2021 at 9:50am
Articles and Commentaries

Predictions for the annual iPhone event on Connected extend all the way back to 2018, months before the Keynote Rickies existed. The 2018 iPhone Event Predictions were pitched as a "no prizes" game, just for fun and bragging rights. As such, no particular set of rules were established, and each host made however many picks they wanted to.

This caused trouble when, after the event, some hosts had more correct answers than others and competitive spirits began to rise. Ultimately, after a lot of conspiracy accusations and flexible arithmetic, Stephen was deemed the winner with 80% correct, while Federico was given a score of 60% despite getting 3 out of 6 (he insisted that his predictions were more meaningful and therefore worth more) and Myke finishing with just 40%.

The 2019 Fall Rickies were the third instance of the Keynote Rickies, and things were running much more smoothly at that point. Stephen got the only Risky Pick points, correctly predicting an absence of any service bundles, while Myke expected one last Jony Ive moment and Federico imagined an Apple TV and game controller bundle.

In the 2020 October Rickies, it was Federico's time to shine with a perfect score, correctly predicting new portrait camera features enabled by new sensor hardware. Stephen and Myke also predicted new hardware, but unfortunately the iPhone did not move to USB-C as Stephen very confidently predicted, and Myke didn't get the return of Touch ID in the new face covering era.

This year, Federico seeks to repeat his impressive performance in 2020. We will see if Stephen continues his buzzkill streak — so far, each iPhone event has seen him devote at least one prediction to things that he thinks will not happen. Myke will be looking for his first iPhone event win, and to continue his dual reign as both Keynote and Annual Chairman.

Stephen's Picks

2018 iPhone Event PredictionsScore
Stephen Non‑graded "No iPads, iPhone and Apple Watch only" 1
Stephen Non‑graded "No Macs" 1
Stephen Non‑graded "Names will be XC and XS" 0
Stephen Non‑graded "Line will be XS, 9, 8+, 8, 7+, 7, SE" 1
Stephen Non‑graded "iPhone 9 will come in colors" 1

2019 Fall RickiesScore
Stephen Regular "The iPhone XR will become the iPhone 11" 1
Stephen Regular "No Mac or iPad hardware in the keynote" 0
  • 10.2” iPad was announced
Stephen Risky "No service bundle announced" 2
  • “including any service being free with another, or some sort of content being added to the iPhone upgrade program”
  • Apple TV+ was announced as a free trial, but not as a bundle. And it doesn’t really come with the upgrade program as such. Stephen threads the needle with this pick.

2020 October RickiesScore
Stephen Regular "ProMotion does not come to new iPhones" 1
Stephen Regular "The iPhone Pro will come in at least 1 new color" 1
Stephen Risky "The iPhone Pro moves to USB-C" -1
  • Stephen was very sure of this pick.

Myke's Picks

2018 iPhone Event PredictionsScore
Myke Non‑graded "New iPads" 0
Myke Non‑graded "New pencil and keyboard" 0
Myke Non‑graded "Nothing about the Mac" 1
  • The mention of Mojave's release is deemed insufficient to make this wrong.
Myke Non‑graded "The cheaper iPhone will be called iPhone 9" 0
Myke Non‑graded "The only iPhones seen on stage will be the ones we already know about" 1
Myke Non‑graded "The larger iPhone will be called XS+" 0
Myke Non‑graded "New and faster FaceID" 1
Myke Non‑graded "A new, unique case" 0

2019 Fall RickiesScore
Myke Regular "New colours in the iPhone line as compared to the previous year" 1
Myke Regular "There will be 3 cameras on the high end phones" 1
  • Ungraded: "the cameras will be ultrawide, 'the camera', and telephoto"
Myke Risky "Tim Cook thanks Jony Ive, the camera shows Jony in the audience, Jony doesn’t stand" -1

2020 October RickiesScore
Myke Regular "Apple announces 4 phones, but in only 3 sizes" 1
Myke Regular "Apple gives another extended free period of TV+ with new product purchases, even if you already had a trial" 0
  • Apple extended the existing free period for TV+, which does not count
  • Myke notes that, since this extension was announced via press release before the event, a differently-worded pick may have been ambiguous based on the rules at the time, so an explicit rule about the scoring window is added.
Myke Risky "The new iPhone will have a Touch ID sensor" -1

Federico's Picks

2018 iPhone Event PredictionsScore
Federico Non‑graded "Two new iPad Pros" 0
  • "Maybe more of a hope"
Federico Non‑graded "A new Smart Keyboard" 0
Federico Non‑graded "iWork updates for iOS 12" 0
Federico Non‑graded "Cheaper phone is not called "iPhone 9"" 1
Federico Non‑graded "New watch bands" 1
Federico Non‑graded "Series 4 has multiple changes to watch faces" 1
  • "(beyond the leaked ones we have already seen)"

2019 Fall RickiesScore
Federico Regular "The biggest phone will not be called Pro Max" 0
Federico Regular "The new phone will offer some kind of night mode for shooting photos in the dark" 1
Federico Risky "Apple announces Apple TV and game controller bundle" -1
  • Federico spins a vivid tale of how actually this was announced, but the other guys don’t buy it.

2020 October RickiesScore
Federico Regular "The new iPhones will carry a new design inspired by the iPad Pro/iPhone 4" 1
  • "Flat sides"
Federico Regular "One of the new iPhones will not have the USB charger in the box" 1
Federico Risky "One of the new iPhones with LIDAR has a new portrait feature thanks to new sensors" 2