Apple is scheduled to hold its annual September showcase tomorrow, which should be our first opportunity to clap eyes on the new iPhone – with Apple CEO Tim Cook and co. taking to the stage to discuss the new design and features in a graphic amount, followed by a glitzy new advertisement that makes the £1,000 smartphone already sitting in your pocket suddenly feel very outdated. But anyone thinking about upgrading their iPhone might want to avoid Apple’s two-hour keynote presentation tomorrow.
That’s because Apple is purportedly planning to break with traditional and ditch the new iPhone as its headline announcement during the annual September showcase. Apple has already confirmed that its next smartphone range, believed to called iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro, will be delayed hitting store shelves worldwide due to the ongoing pandemic, which shuttered manufacturing plants in China and forced Apple designers and software developers to work from home.
We’re expecting to see shiny new iPhone models start to arrive in shops sometime in October, so many assumed that Apple would still want to drum-up interests (and maybe even some pre-orders) ahead of time during its event. But that might not be the case.
Sources speaking to Bloomberg, which has a solid track record when it comes to rumours about forthcoming Apple products, claims Apple will hold a standalone iPhone event in October. The new iPhone models are expected to have redesigned cases, updated cameras, and support for superfast 5G mobile data.
iPhone 12 launch event: new iPad, Apple Watch Series 6, AirPods 3
Apple is widley-tipped to reveal four new models – two models in the follow-up to its pricier iPhone 11 Pro series, as well as two more affordable handsets to supersede the iPhone 11 (a first for the Californian company). All four models are rumoured to have a new design that follows in the footsteps of the iPhone 4 and iPhone 5, with flat sides and a more angular look. This will bring the iPhone more in line with what we’ve seen from the iPad Pro series in recent years.
So, what will Apple talk about for two hours during its media event on September 15?
Given that the tagline on the invitation is “Time Flies,” it seems like a fairly safe bet to assume that Apple Watch will feature heavily. Whispers from the supply chain suggest that Apple has a costly follow-up to the Apple Watch Series 5 with stress-sensing features and the ability to monitor blood oxygen levels. The always-on display – the headline feature of its predecessor – will return.
Sleep tracking will also be included in the Apple Watch Series 6 (as well as older models compatible with the new version of watchOS scheduled to roll out this month) so we’d wager that battery life will be a big focus for Apple.
Alongside the Series 5, Apple is expected to unveil a replacement for the Apple Watch Series 3, which has stuck around in the line-up as the more affordable model available in the Apple Store. While the Series 4 was discontinued following the launch of the Series 5, the Series 3 remains on-sale in Apple Stores starting at £199. Apple will introduce a new model at the same price point to compete against more aggressively priced health trackers from the likes of Fitbit, Withings and others. The design will supposedly be similar to the Apple Watch Series 4, so that every model currently available on Apple Store shelves boast the larger 40mm and 44mm screen sizes.
Think of this Apple Watch model like the iPhone SE of Apple’s smartwatch line-up. With a new flagship model and more affordable wearable set to be unveiled, we’re unlikely to see the Apple Watch Series 5 stick around on store shelves after the iPhone 12 event.
A new iPad Air model will also take the place of the iPhone 12 in the “Time Flies” event. This model will look much closer to the iPad Pro – ditching the physical Home Button and shrinking the borders to maximise the screen real estate available in the footprint.
While the new iPad Air will have the same slimline curved bezels as the iPad Pro – it won’t use the Face ID facial recognition scanner to unlock the tablet, authenticate payments, or unlock secure apps, like banking software. Instead, Apple will relocate the Touch ID fingerprint scanner previously found in the Home Button to the power button at the top.
Whether the new iPad Air will keep the same £479 price tag remains to be seen.
Apple has already confirmed plans to reveal its first batch of Mac computers powered by its own in-house processors – replacing the current industry-standard Intel. An improved Apple TV (as well as a diddier Google Chromecast-style dongle) and HomePod smart speaker are also tipped to launch before the Christmas shopping rush.
So, by the sounds of it, there could be a steady stream of live events broadcast from the Steve Jobs Theatre in Cupertino over the coming weeks.
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