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It’s official: Apple has some more things to announce, and it’s going to on October 30 in an event in Brooklyn, N.Y.
With the “There is more in the making” tagline on the official invite Apple sent members of the press, odds are the company is about to introduce another batch of new products right before the holiday shopping season kicks off in earnest.
Here are the devices we expect to get updates – and the Apple products you should and shouldn’t buy over the next few weeks.
Apple gave the regular iPad a modest update earlier this year, adding support for the company’s Pen stylus and giving the tablet a faster processor. At $329, the 9.7-inch tablet is Apple’s cheapest iPad and fine for most people.
iPad Pro. (Photo: Apple)
Those who want more power and use the iPad as a more traditional computer, however, likely will want to spring for the iPad Pro. But whereas the traditional iPad got a boost earlier this year, the iPad Pro is overdue.
Rumor has it this new event will bring more than a boost. A radical redesign, which has the iPad Pro drop the home button in favor of a design similar to the iPhone X, XS and XR is expected, according to Bloomberg. Face ID facial recognition is anticipated as the new security method to replace the Touch ID fingerprint sensor.
Also new: USB-C as the way to charge the tablet, according to noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, replacing the Lightning port Apple currently uses on all of its mobile devices outside of Macs. USB-C is the standard found on most new laptops, tablets and Android phones, so here’s hoping Apple does, indeed, begin to embrace the standard for its port needs.
Should I buy? If you’re in need of a new iPad look at the recent model (known as the 6th generation) or even last year’s 5th generation if you find it on sale. This regular iPad isn’t expected to get an update at Apple’s event, though, depending on the pricing of the new Pros might get a price cut at some retailers before the holidays.
Thinking of getting an iPad as a computer replacement? Wait.
Macs and MacBooks
Beyond iPads, several members of Apple’s Mac line are in need of some upgrades, with the lone exception being the MacBook Pro that got a refresh in July.
The 12-inch MacBook and MacBook Air laptops and Mac Mini desktop, in particular, are long overdue. The Air hasn’t had a notable update in years, receiving just minor processor updates. It still has roughly the same design as the model from 2010, doesn’t have a higher resolution Retina Display and lacks the USB-C ports found on Apple’s other MacBook lines.
The 12-inch MacBook has a single USB-C port but lacks the recent Intel chips the MacBook Pro and rival Windows laptops run and have not seen its design change much since it was first introduced in 2015.
The Mac Mini, meanwhile, is in a similar spot having been lapsed in design and spec updates by its iMac and iMac Pro siblings.
According to Bloomberg, a new Mac Mini is on the way as is a new MacBook Air that will finally have a more modern design and a high-resolution display. Bloomberg also reports that the new MacBook Air will be cheaper than Apple’s other computers with the company targeting schools.
Should I buy? With little chatter on another update to the MacBook Pro, professionals looking at that machine should be OK pulling the trigger. Those who were considering the 13-inch Pro, 12-inch MacBook or MacBook Air should almost certainly wait to see what Apple does here first.
On the desktop side, the Mac Mini seems to be almost a lock for an update, and it’s possible the company will use the event to freshen up the specs on its iMacs as well as they haven’t been updated in around a year. The Mac Pro, meanwhile, is expected to receive its next update in 2019.
Those looking for a Mac desktop should wait.
AirPods and Beats
Jam out, no wires required. (Photo: Reviewed.com / Michael Desjardin)
While initially derided for their odd design, AirPods have become an absolute hit for Apple. Introduced in 2016, the earbuds are fast approaching their second birthday making them ripe for an update.
A report from Bloomberg earlier this year suggests that Apple will give the buds a modest upgrade later this year, adding a new chip and the ability to summon Siri with just your voice, something that was backed by Kuo in his report.
Apple previously announced it was also working on a wireless charging case for AirPods to work with its long-delayed AirPower charging mat. It’s possible the case makes an appearance as well.
The report also says a pricier water-resistant, noise canceling version of AirPods is coming in 2019. Bloomberg also reports that Apple is planning over-the-ear headphones separate from the Beats brand, though those are also expected next year.
Should I buy? If you’re looking for AirPods, or even Beats headphones, you should wait to see what comes out of the October 30 event, which just so happens to be at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.
Ed Baig gives a look at the new Apple Watch Series 4. One key new feature: fall detection.
The Apple Watch was just given a sizable refresh in September with a new design, built-in ECG and improved health features. While the device may see some discounts as Black Friday approaches, it’s in a pretty safe territory as far as rumors go.
Should I buy? Yes, if you are looking for an Apple Watch you can buy one now.
iPhone XR is expected to be a hit. (Photo: Apple)
Like the Apple Watch, not much more is expected as far as new iPhones go. The iPhone XS and XS Max are available now, the XR goes on sale on Friday and the older 7 and 8 lines have been discounted. No additional new iPhones are anticipated, though it’s possible this could be where we see iOS 12.1 and all its new emoji.
Should I buy? As with the Apple Watch it is likely that there will be plenty of deals and offers around iPhones as we get closer to the holidays, so, for that reason, it may be worth waiting. As far as new devices go, Apple seems to have gotten all of those out of its system last month.
Follow Eli Blumenthal on Twitter @eliblumenthal
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