Apple Watch, MacBook tipped for big redesigns in late 2021

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New iPads with mini-LED displays could come even sooner.
Photo: Adel Neal/Cult of Mac

Apple will introduce a redesigned Apple Watch and MacBook lineup in late 2021, according to one reliable analyst.

Ming-Chi Kuo of TF International Securities expects Apple’s next-generation wearable to bring “innovative health management functions.” He also told investors iPhone 12 is off to a strong start.

Many of us expected big redesigns for the Mac with the introduction of Apple Silicon. However, the new lineup of M1 Macs looks exactly the same as previous models. But new form factors are coming, Kuo says.

Apple’s next lineup of machines is expected to ship with fresh industrial designs. What’s more, those new Macs are just some of the major announcements Apple has planned for next year.

Apple Watch redesign incoming

Kuo also told investors in a note published on Wednesday that an Apple Watch redesign is planned for late 2021. It will bring “innovative health management functions and improved form factor design,” Kuo wrote.

It’s not yet clear what those health management functions will be, but earlier rumors have suggested future Apple Watch models could bring blood sugar monitoring that could revolutionize diabetes treatment.

Kuo doesn’t mention how Apple Watch’s design could change, either. However, it’s likely Apple will retain its shape for the sake of accessory and software compatibility, but make the device thinner.

Before a new Apple Watch arrives, Apple will start debuting its next-generation iPad lineup, Kuo said. It is predicted to come with mini-LED displays, as previously reported, as well as 5G connectivity.

iPhone 12 off to a great start

Kuo also told investors today that iPhone 12 is off to a great start. Demand for iPhone 12 Pro and 12 Pro Max is said to be better than expected, offsetting weaker orders of the iPhone 12 and 12 mini.

The new Mac mini, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro with Apple Silicon are also thought to be selling well so far. However, AirPods shipments are reportedly weaker than originally anticipated.

Kuo now forecasts that AirPods sales will see a decline of up to 10% year-over-year. The decline could be exacerbated by a delay to AirPods 3, which are now expected to arrive between April and June.