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Apple rumored to launch MacOS Catalina next week, ahead of October event

Apple has remained coy about the launch date for MacOS Catalina, the latest version of its Mac operating system (OS), only revealing that it will launch at some point in the fall. However, it now appears that the new version of the OS could have a firm release date — and it’s not far away.

In a detail unearthed by MacRumors, the Danish version of Apple’s website gives a prominent hint to the launch date on its Apple Arcade page. Here, the company says we can “Find it in the App Store from October 4.”

Apple Arcade is a new feature in MacOS Catalina and iOS 13 that provides access to over 100 games for a monthly fee. It has already launched on iOS 13, so the allusion to the App Store can only be referring to the Mac App Store. Moreover, the image beside this text on Apple’s website shows an Apple Arcade game running on a MacBook Pro. Seeing as Apple Arcade is a MacOS Catalina feature, its launch date likely coincides with that for Apple’s new OS.

There is a slight problem with the mooted October 4 launch date, in that Apple usually releases updates to its operating systems on a Monday or a Tuesday, while October 4 is a Friday. However, launching on a different date would not be unprecedented — iOS 13 launched on a Thursday, after all. It’s also possible that Apple Arcade will be released at a different time than MacOS Catalina, with the operating system launching earlier in the week, perhaps on the more traditional Monday or Tuesday.

Apple is expected to hold an October event this year where it releases the long-rumored 16-inch MacBook Pro, a new iPad Pro and more. Based on the dates of previous Apple events in October, we expect this show to land on either October 22, 24, 29, or 31. If Apple is indeed going to launch a new Mac at this event, it would also make sense for it to flip the switch on MacOS Catalina at the same time.

However, we feel this is a tad unlikely. Though the October 4 date is at odds with this prediction, Apple frequently releases major new versions of MacOS away from the glare of the event spotlights. While releasing MacOS Catalina at its October event would make for a nice tie-in, it would also be an outlier, as most previous versions of MacOS have been released to the public in mid-to-late September. Indeed, that would make even an October 4 launch date relatively late.

Whatever the exact launch date turns out to be, you can still download the MacOS Catalina beta to give it a whirl if you’re feeling impatient. Just be aware that the beta will contain a few bugs that need to be ironed out before the official launch.

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