Apple’s big event in September is less than two weeks away. The company never gives a clue as to what will be announced, but we’re all pretty sure it will update the iPhone 14 lineup (iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro, in both regular and Max sizes) and new Apple Watches. (Apple Watches Series 8 in two sizes and probably a third larger “Pro” or “Extreme Sport” model and a new Apple Watch SE).
But those are by no means all irons in the fire for the most valuable company in the world. What else is Cupertino cooking, and what else can we see at the “Far out” event? Here’s a list of rumors about future Apple products, along with our best predictions about whether we’ll see them on September 7 or not.
2nd generation AirPods Pro
Of all the products Apple has in the pipeline, the new AirPods Pro is the one likely to arrive at the September event along with iPhones and Apple Watches.
These second-generation AirPods Pro (or AirPods Pro 2 as some call them) have been rumored for a long time, but they are said to be And last but not least to hit the market this fall. Why announce them along with the new iPhones? Well, one of the rumors is that they will support Bluetooth 5.2 and LE Audio. Since none of the current iPhones support Bluetooth 5.2, it would make sense to combine the announcements. We don’t think Apple will dare to make the new AirPods Pro work nothing but with the new iPhones, but they may offer more advanced features when used with the latest handsets. Kind of like “the new AirPods Pro does all these great things, but when you plug them into the new iPhone, it does these other things too”.
The new AirPods Pro are expected to have a refined design, better sound quality, better noise cancellation and perhaps new fitness features as well.
Apple TV 4K
There are rumors of a new Apple TV coming in the second half of this year, but we don’t know much about it other than that it’s expected to have an “improved cost structure.” That’s a fancy way of saying it costs Apple less to make… and it can be reflected in a lower price, or just more profit for Apple.
If this does indeed come in 2022, it could appear any moment. Unless it’s an absolutely massive change in design and features, which isn’t expected, it could be a pretty short announcement sneaking into the September or October events, or even just being released straight to the web with little fanfare.
10th generation iPad
One of the more exciting products coming this year, if we are to believe the rumors, is the 10th generation iPad. Finally breaking with its old design, the new iPad should take design cues from the iPad Air, with a 10.5-inch display, Touch ID in the side button, and flat edges. Rumors say it will have USB-C and also support the second-generation Apple Pencil.
But we don’t think it will appear at the September event. Apple has officially delayed iPadOS 16 and says the first release will be iPadOS 16.1. We believe this will happen in October, and no new iPads will be unveiled until an October event to coincide with the release date of iPadOS 16.1.
M2 iPad Pro
Now that the M2 processor is out (in the MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro), it’s time to update those M1-based iPads with an M2 processor. The M2-based iPad Prods can also be charged wirelessly, but rumors of a larger iPad 14 or 15 inches are unlikely to surface until next year. Look for the M2 iPad Pro which will land in October with the 10th generation iPad.
M2 Mac mini
Another M1-based product ready for the M2 treatment is the Mac mini. There are conflicting reports on this one… some say they expect the same Mac mini we have today, just with the new M2 processor. Others say a new design is in the works with a new case and two-tone design.
It probably won’t be at the September event – consumer Macs are usually at a later event, so keep an eye out in October if it’s coming this year.
The last product to make the switch to Apple silicon is the Mac Pro. Apple said the transition would take two years and, well, time is almost up. Does that mean we’ll see the Mac Pro this year? Opinions are mixed. It’s hard to imagine an “M2 Extreme” in a Mac if we don’t already have MacBook Pros or Mac Studios with M2 Max or M2 Ultra. And since the Mac Studio performs so well, there doesn’t seem to be any rush to get something even more powerful.
Even if Apple gives us a preview of the new Mac Pro, with a 2023 release date, we think it will be later in the year rather than at the September event.
While we’re on the subject of Macs, we should mention that Apple is expected to release a larger Apple silicon-based iMac at some point. What some call a new iMac Pro would have Apple Silicon and a new design, similar to the M1 iMac. The screen would be larger (27 inches or so) and may include ProMotion or mini LED backlighting for HDR. It would come with a more expensive M2 processor, such as an M2 Max or M2 Ultra.
But all that isn’t done yet, and the mere existence of this product appears to be in question — some say the Apple Studio Display is the product some tipsters mistook for a larger iMac. We don’t think it’s coming in 2022 or even 2023, so don’t hold your breath for a release during the September event.
HomePod with display
Google has its Nest Hub and Nest Hub Max, Amazon has a slew of Echo Show devices, but Apple doesn’t have a smart home device with a display. We’ve been hearing rumors for a while about a HomePod with a screen (some call it a “HomePod with an iPad attached”). The most recent rumors say it is expected in late 2022 or early 2023.
If it is indeed a late 2022 device, there’s no reason Apple couldn’t reveal it at the September event. But it seems it needs a more important display than sitting in the shadows of the iPhone, Apple’s most popular product. Our guess is it won’t be until 2023, if at all, and we won’t be seeing it at an event this fall.
We know that Apple is working on an AR headset or glasses. The latest rumors say the first device will be an expensive, high-end, limited-production unit for developers to follow a year or so later with something sleeker and more affordable for the mass market.
Some even say the device will arrive as early as January 2023 — and Apple likes to tease major new products months in advance with a big “one more thing” announcement. There’s no reason that couldn’t happen at the end of the iPhone event, or the October event — after all, Apple unveiled the Apple Watch as a One More Thing at the iPhone 6 event — but it’s much more likely that it gets its own event .