Long-awaited AirTags, first 5G iPad, could be unveiled by Apple on March 16th
UPDATE 2: The Apple AirTags are now official, starting at $29. Pre-orders for the Apple AirTags start today!
UPDATE:Bloomberg's Mark Gurman says that Apple doesn't plan on holding an event on March 16th. That doesn't mean that the products rumored to be unveiled won't be announced next month. It just means that you now have March 16th open to do other things.
According to South Korea's Economic Daily News, on Tuesday, March 16th Apple will finally unveil some new products including the long-rumored Apple AirTags item tracker. Also expected are new iPads including the latest series of iPad Pro tablets. Introducing new products in March isn't as unusual for Apple as you might think. It allows Apple to reward its fans by bringing new products to the marketplace twice a year, every six months. Apple introduced new products in March back in 2018, 2019, 2020, and is rumored to do so again this year.
Apple's next new product event rumored to take place on March 16th
The report by the Economic Daily News is based on tweets. Keeping that in mind, let's take a look at the new products that we could see Apple unveil on March 16th. The new iPad Pro models could be the first Apple tablets to support 5G connectivity; after all, Apple launched its first 5G handsets during last year's fourth quarter. Another big change to the line might be found on the display where there is talk about Apple using mini-LED. The advantages of using this technology is that mini-LED offers a wide color gamut, a higher contrast ratio, a brighter display and is more energy-efficient. Mini-LED screens deliver deeper blacks and are not as likely to suffer from screen burn-in. Apple might use this type of display on the larger 12.9-inch iPad Pro (2021) variant only (an 11-inch variant is likely to be introduced at the same time). Mini-LED is a transitional technology with micro-LED to come afterward. The new iPad Pro tablets could be powered by Apple's most powerful chipset, the 5nm Apple A14X Bionic chipset.
Leaked AirTags screenshots discovered in 2019
Besides the latest iPad Pro models, another tablet could find its way to next month's event. The iPad mini (2021) would be Apple's sixth-generation mini tablet and there are some changes expected. First, an 8.4-inch display would grace the slate compared to the 7.9-inch screen on the previous version of the device. Earlier reports suggested that the tablet will keep Touch ID on the bottom bezel instead of integrating it with the power button like Apple did with the iPad Air (2020). Months ago, reliable TF International analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said that the iPad mini (2021) will be equipped with the 5nm A14 Bionic chipset under the hood.
Apple plans on using AR to indicate to users when they are closing in on the item they are seeking by using images of a balloon. "Walk around several feet and move your iPhone up and down until a balloon comes into view," said a string of code. However, this code was discovered in 2019 and since then the introduction of the product was pushed back. Apple might have made some changes to AirTags since then. Previously leaked images showed that Apple was recommending the use of AirTags on a briefcase, a bicycle, and a key chain.The Economic Daily News report says that on March 16th, Apple will also reveal its AirTags item tracking system. Using the "Find My..." app and the Ultra Wideband U1 chip, items with an AirTag attached can be found using an iPhone. The U1 chip, placed inside the 2019 and 2020 iPhone models, will help users discover lost and stolen items faster than trackers that use Bluetooth only. The AppleTags are said to be faster and more accurate. Previous leaks showed how
Last month, Apple's chief rival Samsung unveiled the Bluetooth LE powered Galaxy SmartTag. Similar to AirTags, the SmartTag is attached to items that the user doesn't want to lose and any Galaxy device can be used in conjunction with a SmartTag to give the user an approximate location of the lost or stolen item.
So circle your calendar or even better, set an alert for March 16th. If this rumor is legit, Apple will be introducing a new iPad Pro series, a new iPad mini, and the AirTags. And it will also indicate that we are about six-months away from the introduction of the next iPhone line.