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Every year, anticipation grows for what Apple will release in the fall alongside the annual iPhone refresh. Here’s what to expect from September’s Apple event.
Regular as clockwork, Apple takes time in the fall to launch a swathe of new products intended for consumers to buy during the following holiday shopping period. As a very lucrative time of year for the company, Apple puts a lot of effort into its fall events, showing off as many new items as possible.
While primarily centered on its iPhone product line, Apple does take time to look at other complementary products and services.
Here’s what you can expect from Apple’s fall 2022 effort.
When will launch events take place?
Apple’s usual cadence for its fall launches is to hold at least one special event, with at least one taking place in the September of that year. You must return to 2011 to encounter a year without a September event.
The September launch usually won’t be the only one, as over the last ten years, there have been seven October events and one November event.
As Apple has held October events in 2020 and 2021 as part of a slickly-produced pre-recorded video stream prompted by COVID-19, it seems probable that there will be at least two events in the fall lineup.
While other fall events cover many different Apple products, with later events generally handling Mac-related subjects, the iPhone usually dominates the September event. The exception for the last decade was 2020, when the September event focused on the Apple Watch and iPad lines, while October dealt with iPhones and HomePod mini, and November was the Mac month.
As for when in September that event will occur, Apple typically holds the event around two weeks into the month, skewing closer to mid-month over the years.
Claims that Apple started recording its September event video in early August matches the trend, with an August 7 report also indicating an October event will join it.
Apple is unlikely to reveal the date of its September event until the week prior. All previous events considered, we should get a confirmation of an event roughly a week into September.
There are rumors that allege the event will be happening a lot earlier. According to Max Winebach in an August 7 tweet, the event could happen on September 6, though admits “not 100% sure, but around there seems right.”
Given that labor day is on September 5, the day before the claimed date, and that Apple’s last five September events occurred closer to the middle of the month, a September 6 or 7 event is very unlikely.
iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Max
The biggest story each year is that of new iPhone models. However, the story for 2022 may be one talking about a lack of updates, rather than of ground-breaking changes.
For the iPhone 14, Apple is expected to bring out two models as usual, but with a big shift in size. Instead of an iPhone and iPhone mini, there will instead be the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Max.
Rumors and supposedly leaked diagrams point to models having 6.1-inch and 6.7-inch displays, echoing the sizes of the iPhone 13 and the iPhone 13 Pro Max. Despite the larger size, the Max model will share the specifications of its non-Pro stablemate.
What will change on the outside could be the camera bump, which could be made to be smaller.
Internally, it seems that Apple could be sticking to the same A15 chip for its non-Pro lineup instead of upgrading to an A16, but it could still have some processing improvement. According to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the RAM of the standard models could jump from 4GB to 6GB.
Other features that may stay the same can include a lack of ProMotion, the return of the notch, the Lightning port, and the same 12MP camera system. That said, there could still be some improvements.
For example, the iPhone could gain Center Stage support for video calls. The Macro mode from the iPhone 13 Pro lineup may also make the jump for 2022.
There has also been speculation that one other change could be the price. In July, it was speculated that supply chain cost increases will be passed onto consumers, which could increase the base cost of models by as much as $100.
While the September event will almost certainly involve iPhones, it seems that most eyes will be watching the changes in the Pro models, not the iPhone 14.
iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max
The Pro lineup of iPhones get the most significant upgrades each year, and for 2022, that probably remains the case.
Once again, rumors point to two models, consisting of the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max, complete with 6.1-inch and 6.7-inch displays. Leaked diagrams indicate they should be practically the same size and shape as the year-ago models.
The first noticeable change from the iPhone 13 lineup is the display, as rumors indicate Apple will switch to an always-on version. Such a feature will provide at-a-glance details for users without waking and illuminating the entire screen, saving battery.
That display will also apparently switch out the notch for a pill-and-hole cutout, significantly reducing how much of the display is wasted by the onboard TrueDepth camera array.
The cameras may also get a massive upgrade, with the use of a 48-megapixel wide camera sensor. The change could result in the ability to record 8K-resolution video and create more detailed 12-megapixel images using a process called pixel binning.
Rumors propose that the A16 could be reserved just for the Pro line, which will provide a performance increase over the A15 non-Pro models, despite having identical 6GB memory allocations.
The proposed $100 increase for the non-Pro models may also appear in the Pro range, if only for consistency. However, Apple may still seek to avoid the sticker shock associated with a starting price of $1,099.
Apple Watch Series 8
A good contender for launch alongside a new iPhone, the Apple Watch Series 8 can expand the Apple Watch range into three variants, bringing out a Pro version alongside the standard and Apple Watch SE.
Leaks say the standard edition will not get much in the way of a redesign and will appear to be similar to the Apple Watch Series 7 in many respects. This includes aluminum and stainless steel cases in 41mm and 45mm sizes.
However, there have also been claims of a third size, with a larger display resulting in an Apple Watch with a size of about 47mm. This third one may be the supposedly rumored “Pro” variant.
Anticipated to be more rugged than usual, the Pro model will be more capable of use in sports and fitness, complete with a more durable casing, possibly titanium. The durability could come at a cost, with one report claiming the Pro model could start from around $900.
On the inside of the standard and Pro models, Apple is thought to be introducing body temperature measurements for the first time, enabling fever detection. While an update to the S8 chip is planned, it is also believed that the chip update won’t be that much faster than the current-gen S7.
iPad and iPad Pro
The iPad often appears during the September event, and depending on Apple’s launch plans, it could easily appear in September or an event later in the season.
The tenth-generation iPad is rumored to sport an all-new design for once, as its entry-level nature means it hasn’t been the subject of changes overall. For the tenth version, renders and leaks point to the use of an all-new design.
Flat iPad Pro-like sides could point to Apple Pencil 2 support, as well as bringing the tablet more in line with Apple’s modern aesthetic. The casing could introduce slimmer bezels around the display, as well as a new rear camera module, but the Touch ID Home button may continue to survive for another year.
Inside, it could use the A14 chip, with support for 5G networks, Bluetooth 5.0, and Wi-Fi 6.
Along with the iPad update, changes could also be afoot for the iPad Pro, albeit not as seismic in nature.
For a start, the M1-equipped tablet lineup could see a change over to using M2. This would be a natural progression for the product line, adding enhanced video features.
There have also been claims of other updates, such as wireless charging via MagSafe, camera system changes, and mini LED backlighting for the 11-inch iPad Pro. Changes to the Smart Connector could be on the way, with a four-pin design apparently inbound.
AirPods Pro 2 and AirPods Max
With AirPods on its third generation, it’s about time that the AirPods Pro get an update. Luckily enough, rumors point in that direction as well.
In May, it was reckoned that an update to the personal audio devices would occur in the second half of 2022, most likely via a fall event.
Among the supposed changes to the model is the inclusion of a stemless design, departing wildly from the existing AirPods aesthetic.
There have also been older claims that there will be some form of fitness tracking functionality, but later assessments have doubted their inclusion. Rumors have also suggested the use of a microphone in the charging case, a form of hearing aid functionality, and a case speaker to assist with Find My recovery.
The changes for the AirPods Max may not necessarily be as significant. Rumors say there are changes on the way, but limited more to new color options than feature updates.
That’s not all, folks
Apple launches many products in the fall, far beyond this list. For the purposes of this article, we have dealt with just the products we believe Apple will show during a September event.
Rumors do claim new Mac models are on the way, such as a New Mac mini or more M2 MacBook Pro releases. However, Apple doesn’t usually launch them in September but instead waits for an event occurring at a later time.
There are also long-standing rumors about the Apple mixed-reality headset, but such a ground-breaking release would see Apple holding a completely separate launch event. It would have too much ground to cover if it sandwiched the headset alongside other launches.
There’s also speculation that the launch of the headset won’t be until 2023.