Apple will bolster its product lineup with the launch of new iPhones, iPad Pros, a new MacBook, Apple Watch, and a slew of other gadgets at its “Gather round” event. The annual event hosted by the Cupertino giant, that’s now worth $1 trillion market cap, will kick off at 10 am PT, which is 10.30 pm IST in India, from the Steve Jobs Theater in California. The focus will be on this year’s iteration of iPhones, which a multitude of reports have pointed to, will be three in number – iPhone XS, iPhone XS Plus (or Max), and iPhone XR. Of everything that has leaked so far will be new in 2018 iPhones, the most intriguing is the addition of a dual SIM card tray in at least one model, however, it will be limited to China only, as per the reports.
The most premium iPhone model will be the iPhone XS Plus, which is expected to come with a 6.5-inch OLED display, support for Apple Pencil, Face ID, and 3D Touch. There will be another model that will pack the OLED display – the iPhone XS. It is speculated to come with a 5.8-inch display with a similar design language as the iPhone X, which launched last year, except for a bumped up processor under the hood along with some other specifications. The interesting of the lot is the 6.1-inch LCD display iPhone XR, which will be in the eye of the Apple investors, as well as the enthusiasts, who are eager to know how Apple is going to attract the mass that wants to own an iPhone at an affordable price point.
As for the specifications, multiple reports have hinted at the design that will be in line with the last year’s iPhone X on all three models launching today. There will be new processors, probably the Apple A12 powering all three models, however, the OLED display iPhones – iPhone XS and XS Plus – will pack a whole lot different from the iPhone XR that will come out with an LCD display. Both the premium models are expected to come with 4GB of RAM with three storage models – 64GB, 128GB, and for the first time, 512GB. In China, where Apple is troubled because of the tanking iPhone sales, will see the first-ever dual-SIM iPhone, if a leaked image is to be believed. There will be dual cameras on the OLED display iPhone models, while the iPhone XR will get a single camera on the rear. Contrary to this, there have been reports suggesting the top-end iPhone XS Plus could sport a three-camera setup to double down on optics that has constantly been acclaimed by the industry.
The pricing for the iPhone this year is strongly expected to shoot up to surpass the $1,000 barrier that the last year’s iPhone X settled down for. According to some industry analysts, the iPhone XS Plus, the most premium iPhone model, will cost north of $1,049, however, it is even believed that the pricing could go as high as $1,099 for the top-end model of iPhone XS Plus. The iPhone XR, on the other hand, is likely to come with a price tag somewhere between $649 to $899, as per a report by Bloomberg, reiterating what a Goldman Sachs analyst predicted a while ago. While the rumours are rife that the iPhone XR will be the cheapest iPhone of them all, it will not be as cheap as the $649 price point, as pointed out by some analysts. In any case, we are just a few hours away from being treated with Apple’s biggest event of the year that will clear the picture of what the new iPhone models be called, priced, and look like.
Apart from the iPhones, Apple is highly expected to launch a new generation of Apple Watch – the Apple Watch Series 4. This year Apple Watch is likely to go slimmer with thinner bezels that would almost pass for a bezel-less design on the display. The 42mm Apple Watch variant will have a larger display than its prequel, thanks to the ‘exclusive’ image leaked by 9to5Google. According to the image, the Apple Watch Series 4 will have the display bleeding over to the edges, so as to form a bulge. The Apple Watch Series 4 is also reported to come with an ECG/EKG tool fitted into it, as per the renowned analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Apple is said to have sourced the EKG supply from Osram. Apart from this, a new watch face is likely to arrive on the new Apple Watch models. There could also be an additional microphone for noise cancellation while taking up calls via the Apple Watch.
Coming to the iPad Pro model, which has been hotly anticipated and expected by the tech enthusiasts, Apple will make some subtle changes. The iPad Pro (2018) model would come with a USB Type-C instead of the Lightning connector at the bottom, as well as a unibody design. The 12.9-inch variant is also expected to come with support for Face ID, while getting rid of the Home button. The 3.5mm headphone jack will also not be present on the iPad Pro expected today.
Earlier this year, Apple resurrected the MacBook Pro range with fresh models that hardly banked on any new additions except for the processor and storage. At its “Gather round” event, Apple will launch a new entry-level MacBook model that will replace the MacBook Air, which is quite popular due to its low price. The Apple MacBook model is expected to come with a Touch ID fingerprint sensor, however, the Touch Bar, as seen on the high-end MacBook Pro models, is doubted. There will be the Retina Display and spruced up internals expected on the MacBook.
Apple will also launch an improved Mac mini computer that will be revived after four years. Mac mini has been quite popular with the DIY people, who have complained of the ignorance Apple has paid to Mac mini for all these years. Apple, however, earlier this year, told a publication that its team is working on a new and improved Mac mini device, which we will see later today.