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Apple is set to hold its next big hardware event this fall. Here’s what to expect.
Apple is set to hold its next big hardware event this fall. No exact date has been revealed as of yet and it’s unclear if Apple will have one or two events — if you remember, last year it held two separate events, one in mid-September for the iPhone 12, iPad Air and the two new Apple Watches, and another event in early November for the M1 MacBook Air, M1 MacBook Pro and M1 Mac mini — but we know that Apple is definitely gearing up to release a bunch of new products. And it’s going to happen sometime soon.
Here’s what we know so far.
The next big hardware event will most definitely be headlined by the iPhone 13. Like previous years, Apple is expected to release four different iPhone 13 models, but give that Apple gave us a pretty big redesign with iPhone 12 (in the form of flat edges and the integration of MagSafe), you shouldn’t expect the iPhone 13 to look that much different.
The big improvements are set to be with the display, in that the iPhone 13 might get an always-on display (like the Apple Watch Series 6) and a 120Hz refresh rate. The camera system is set to get a pretty big boost, too, in that it could bring the LIDAR sensor that helps with low-light photography and AR effects, to all iPhone 13 models instead of just the «Pro» models.
Apple hasn’t given the Apple Watch a serious redesign in the last few years, but that’s expected to change with the Series 7. According to multiple sources, Apple is expected to give the Series 7 flat edges, just like the iPhone 12, which will make the smartwatch even more rugged and drop resistant. It’s expected to have slimmer bezels and a bigger display. And it will have a new sensor that tacks your blood glucose, your blood pressure and blood alcohol levels.
Last year was the first year that Apple gave us two completely new Apple Watch models in the Series 6 and the more affordable SE. It’s pretty obvious that Apple is going to release the Series 7, which is the next-generation version of the Series 6, but it’s not as clear if Apple is going to release a new version of the SE. It could leave the SE as is and just kill off the Series 3, which can’t really handle the newest software updates.
The next-generation of MacBook Pros are set to get announced sometime this fall — it could happen at the iPhone event this September or sometime later on — and they’re supposed to get quite the upgrade. Not only is Apple set to finally give the M1 treatment to its high-end MacBook Pros (specifically, the 16-inch model), but the upcoming 14-inch and 16-inch Pros could get a drastic redesign, too.
According to Ming-Chi Kuo, a well-known Apple analyst, these next-gen MacBook Pros be roughly the same size but have thinner bezels and a larger edge-to-edge display. They also could get a new MagSafe power connection — which Apple killed off in 2016 but recently brought kind-of back with the M1 iMac — and this could help charge the new MacBook Pros even faster than before.
The keyboard and port situation is poised to look quite different, too. Apple could be set to kill off the Touch Bar, which has been a pretty polarizing feature, and bring back the traditional row of function keys. It’s also expected that the new MacBook Pros will have more than just USB-C ports, with Kuo predicting Apple to bring back the two things that professionals really want: an HDMI port and SD card reader.
Apple is expected to announce a new iPad mini this fall and its rumored to be getting a big design refresh. Apple hasn’t updated the design of the iPad mini since 2016 (and hasn’t refreshed the internals since March 2019), so this update is long overdue.
The upcoming sixth-generation iPad mini is expected to more closely resemble the design of the most recent iPad Air in that it will likely have Touch ID integrated into the side power button — still no Face ID, though. It will have a slightly larger 8.4-inch display (compared to the current 7.9-inch display) and thinner bezels, with the overall size of the new mini set to remain about the same. It seems unlikely, but Apple could even give it a USB-C charging port.
Apple is gearing up to announce the next generation of AirPods (not AirPods Pro). It’s been over two years since Apple gave us its second-generation AirPods (back in March 2019) and we’re due for an update.
The third-generation models are expected to adopt the design of the AirPods Pro — meaning shorter stems or swappable silicone ear tips — but won’t likely have all the same premium features, like noise-cancellation and transparency modes. They could have the built-in sensors (accelerometer and gyroscope) to enable spatial audio, however, which would be a big upgrade for people watching videos or movies on their iPhone.