Unconfirmed reports reveal some details about iWork ‘06, iLife ‘06 and .Mac improvements which are expected to be announced tomorrow during Macworld Expo 2006. According to the reports, Apple will mainly bring multiple-media web-publishing features to its consumer-oriented software and services this year.
iWork ‘06 to focus on web-publishing
Sources claim Apple will add several web-publishing related features to Pages 2.0 and Keynote 3.0. Pages should allow to any user familiar with a text processor to post articles on a blog very easily, directly through the application.
Keynote should also improve web-export features and bring more interactivity. It is not clear if Apple will add another application dedicated to web-editing to iWork though. Although it wasn’t mentioned in any of the reports we received, we can expect Keynote to bring more transition effects, as seen during some presentations made by Steve Jobs this past year.
Finally a spreadsheet application?
Several sources have also confirmed rumours that the forthcoming iWork suite will include a spreadsheet application that could be called “Numbers”. In its first version, Numbers will focus on ease of use, high quality charts and good integration with iWork.
Rumours of a full Office suite from Apple have been running around the net for several years. Back in summer 2002, MacosXrumors was the first to report that Apple was working on a new Office suite so as to replace AppleWorks and compete with Microsoft Office.
iLife ‘06 to get web publishing features as well
The consumer-oriented iLife ‘06 suite is also rumoured to get web-design related features. Apple has “accidentally” leaked some information on iLife on its web site this earlier this week and some visitors noticed the name “iWeb” in the list of the iLife’s applications.
Though there are no details on iWeb, some unconfirmed reports suggest that the application is based on BlogWave Studio which is a shareware WYIWYG, blog-oriented publishing tool.
Apple to add blog and podcasting to .Mac homepages
Older reports that we couldn’t verify and that we had chosen to not publish were claiming that Apple was preparing to add blog and podcast support on its .Mac homepage service during 2006.
If true, Apple could easily integrate .Mac with Pages 2.0 and a new version of GarageBand so as to make blogging and podcasting easy for everyone. That could be the reason why Apple has scheduled a maintenance down-time of its .Mac services during tomorrow’s keynote.