In less than 24 hours, Apple CEO Tim Cook and an assortment of other Apple executives will take the stage at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, where they will announce a wide array of new products.
Here's a rundown of what we can expect to see:
With the iPhone launch now behind us, it's time to talk all things iPad. To that end, a fifth-generation iPad is all but a lock. Recently leaked photos suggest that Apple this time around will introude a Space Grey model of the iPad. What will be really interesting to see is whether or not Apple's flagship iPad receives the Touch ID treatment. While I'd normally consider that would be a no-brainer, Apple can barely keep up with iPhone 5s demand on account of what are reportedly low yields on the Touch ID components. With iPhone 5s devices still in short supply across all major cities in the U.S., one has to wonder if Apple would start advertising yet another device it has trouble stocking in stores.
Now, analyst Ming-chi Kuo from KGI is typically spot-on with respect to Apple rumors, and he anticipates that the fifth-gen iPad will also feature a smaller bezel than its predecessors and will house a 64-bit A7X processor. He also notes that it will be about 20% lighter than the 4th-gen iPad, slightly thinner as well, and will feature an enhanced camera.
Also on the docket will likely be a revamped iPad Mini. The question here is whether or not the iPad Mini will be graced with a Retina Display. At this point, rumors seem to indicate that it will. Indeed, the Wall Street Journal reported over the weekend that Retina Display iPad Minis will be announced on Tuesday.
OS X Mavericks
It's all but a given that Apple will show off a finalized version of OS X Mavericks. Odds are pretty good, if not guaranteed, that we'll also get a firm release date for Apple's latest iteration of OS X. Indeed, Apple just this past weekend seeded developers with the OS X Mavericks Golden Master.
The rumor mill also points to the announcement of new Retina Display MacBook Pros. The enhancements, according to Kuo, will be the inclusion of Intel's power-efficient Haswell processors and an upgraded full HD iSight camera. Translation? Expect some much-improved battery life on Apple's high-end notebooks.
iPad Smart Cover
Apple's invitation for the event slyly noted that the company has a lot more to cover. Naturally, some took this cryptic message to read that Apple will reveal revamped Smart Covers. Interestingly enough, former Apple employee Jamie Ryan wrote on Monday that Apple may be releasing new Smart Covers with integrated keyboards.
I’ve been speaking to a couple of people at Apple for the last few days and they have told me that a case for the full size iPad that mimics Microsofts touch cover has been prototyped. It’s not clear whether the process is far enough along to make this Tuesdays event but they did say a few different styles had been in testing for a while. This would certainly allow Apple to differentiate the larger iPad from its little brother and market it as the more ’pro’ of the 2. Apple already sells a Bluetooth keyboard that functions perfectly with the iPad but it’s not quite as integrated as Microsofts offering, requiring a lot more bag space. This is the primary motivation behind the development, as all of the current solutions are fairly inelegant. Apple realises the market for the large iPad is mainly professionals looking to work on it whereas the iPad mini is mainly content consumption.
Again, Apple has filed patent applications for such a device, but remember Apple often files patents for products and devices that never quite make it to market. Still, given the messaging on the invitation, keep an eye out for what may very well be a "one more thing" type of product announcement.
"Can't innovate anymore my ass!" Phil Schiller boldly proclaimed during this year's WWDC event as he introduced Apple's copmletely revamped Mac Pro. We haven't heard much about Apple's next-gen Mac Pro for a while now, but hopefully we'll get some sort of indication of a release date and pricing during tomorrow's media event. I can hazzard a guess that the new Mac Pro will certainly cost a pretty penny. You can read a whole lot more about the intriguing Mac Pro on Apple's website.
While some initial reports pointed to some sort of Apple TV update, those reports seemed to have died down. With new iPads and OS X Mavericks likely taking center stage, I doubt there will be any Apple TV announcement of any sort.
4K Thunderbolt 2.0 Display
Anyone who has seen a 4K display up close and in person can attest to its amazing, brilliant, and unparalelled picture quality. To that, high-end editors will be pleased if Apple announces a new 4K Thunderbolt 2.0 display.
As for release dates, 9to5 Mac points us to the French-language site MacG, which claims that the following release schedule is accurate.
New iPads will be released on October 30 or 31. The new Mac Pro will be released on November 15, while the revamped lineup of MacBook Pros will be released later this week.