In brief: Apple has several things to unveil next month, such as two camera-focused “Pro” iPhones, a new, larger MacBook Pro with a more reliable keyboard design, new iPads, and new Apple Watch casing options. The company is also preparing a few surprises for next year, such as a smaller, cheaper HomePod and new AirPods, among other things.
As we get closer to the much-awaited fall iPhone launch event, a new report from Bloomberg shows what to expect in terms of the hardware lineup that will reportedly debut on September 10. Apparently, the Cupertino giant is looking to introduce three new iPhones that include an additional lens when compared to the current lineup. The two OLED models will be marketed to camera enthusiasts with a “Pro” branding, and will feature wide angle, ultra-wide angle, and telephoto lenses. The mainstream model will only get one additional lens and green as an additional color option.
The iPhone 11 Pro camera software will take three simultaneous photos and combine them into a higher resolution picture using supersampling techniques, which is said to be “rivaling some traditional cameras.” Apple has also worked on improving low-light performance, which has been a pain point for years while phones in the Android camp such as the Google Pixel have become very good at it. Another notable feature will be the ability to adjust the crop and framing for a picture after it was taken.
Bloomberg says Apple has added several new editing features in the Photos app on iOS 13, and that the video capture of the new iPhones has also received an upgrade. Users of the new Pro models will supposedly be able to “retouch, apply effects, alter colors, reframe and crop video as it is being recorded live on the device.”
The internals have been updated with the A13 chipset which will be paired with a new “matrix co-processor,” but much more interesting is the improved Face ID. Apple is reportedly tackling one of the biggest complaints about the technology, so the upgraded version will allow users to unlock the phone even when they hold it at an angle or flat on a surface. 3D Touch has been replaced with Haptic Touch – similar to iPhone XR, and the “Pro” iPhones will have reverse charging akin to Samsung’s Galaxy S10 lineup.
The three new iPhones will otherwise look almost identical to the iPhone XS, XR and XS MAX, and feature enhanced water resistance. Apple has also changed some color options to have a matte finish, and the protective glass should theoretically be more shatter-resistant. There’s no 5G connectivity for those of you who had hoped for it, as that is said to be reserved for 2020 iPhones. As the telco industry is scrambling to capitalize on 5G, Apple is taking its time on implementing the new tech, mostly because it aspires to become a key player.
Apple’s iPad family will see a few changes this year, with the company discontinuing its current entry-level 9.7-inch iPad in favor of a 10.2-inch variety. The Pro models will be 11-inch and 12.9-inch slates with a similar design to last generation, and are said to feature upgraded camera modules and processors.
The biggest surprise this year is said to come in the form of a new, larger MacBook Pro with a 16-inch display. This would mark a return to larger display sizes, possibly as a way to appeal to professionals who have started looking at compelling options in the Windows camp. The device will reportedly have a similar footprint to the current 15-inch model and is likely to feature the more reliable scissor switch design in its keyboard that Apple wants to integrate in all future MacBooks.
The Apple Watch is also getting the upgrade treatment, but it’s not yet clear if this is a generational leap or just an extension of the current Series 4 lineup. The focus will mostly be on the software side of things with watchOS 6, and we’ll have new ceramic and titanium Apple Watches to choose from.
Bloomberg also mentioned that a smaller HomePod is in the works. The current model launched at $350 and was discounted to $200 back in April due to weak demand, so Apple has been working on a less expensive version with a simpler audio setup that could be priced significantly lower. There’s also a new, more expensive version of AirPods in the works that’s said to feature noise cancellation and a water resistant design.
We know from asset leaks that Apple is likely to hold the event on September 10, and this would also follow the same pattern as previous launch events. Bloomberg doesn’t say that we’re going to see all of these announced in one go, but it expects all of them to be unveiled sometime this fall.