Apple’s new iPads could get surprise unveiling next week

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The next iPad Pro offer faster refresh rates for Apple Pencil.
The next iPad Pro offer faster refresh rates for Apple Pencil.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple will surprise us with new products next week, according to supposedly trustworthy sources in the company’s supply chain. Recent rumors have promised a trio of new iPad Pros this spring, including a brand new 10.5-inch model with an improved design.

“Apple is expected to announce new products later this month, most likely between Monday, March 20 and Friday, March 24, according to reputable supply chain analysts we spoke to who wish to remain anonymous,” reports MacRumors.

The site adds that this information is based on the analysts’ own sources — not on other reports.

Although the sources did not disclose what Apple has up its sleeve, recent rumors have pointed to much-anticipated iPad upgrades. Fans are expecting an updated 12.9-inch iPad Pro, a new 10.5-inch iPad Pro and a more affordable iPad with a 9.7-inch display.

The 10.5-inch iPad Pro is expected to offer an improved design with slimmer bezels. Some have claimed it will also lose its physical Home button, allowing the larger display to fit inside the same footprint as the 9.7-inch iPad’s.

If indeed Apple does make this change, then rumors it will follow similar steps with the iPhone 8 to deliver a larger display with a “function area” (read: mini Touch Bar) will become much more believable.

The new 12.9-inch iPad Pro is expected to get an improved 12-megapixel iSight camera, and a True Tone display like the one offered by its smaller sibling.

Reliable KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo is just one of a number of people who have promised these devices this spring. Some, including Japanese blog Macotakara, which has been reliable in the past, are also expecting an iPhone SE with 128GB of storage.

Other announcements could include new Apple Watch bands and a (PRODUCT)RED option for iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, which will be painted … red.

Apple has hosted March events with a focus on iPad for the past four years. However, the company has not yet sent out press invites for a spring 2017 event. That suggests the event could happen later than usual in the calendar year.

Alternatively, Apple could announce these products in a press release with little fanfare before making them available to purchase through its online store. We don’t expect that to be the case unless the upgrades are incremental.

Some reports have suggested the new 10.5-inch iPad Pro will be delayed, so it might not get its official unveiling until later. If that’s the case, and Apple only makes minor changes to the 9.7- and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models, a press release could be all we get.

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