What to expect at Apple's March 8 event: New iPhone, iPad and Mac

What to expect at Apple’s March 8 event: New iPhone, iPad and Mac [Updated]

By

Peek Performance: What to expect from Apple March 8 event
It's almost Apple time.
Image: Apple/Cult of Mac

Spring 2022 will bring an array of new Apple products, if the rumor mill proves correct, and we’ll get our first look Tuesday. Numerous leaks point to an improved 5G iPhone SE and iPad Air coming soon. And a new Mac (or multiple Macs) might show up, too. Maybe even a new M2 processor as the lineup completes the transition to Apple silicon.

All of this could be unveiled on March 8, when Apple holds its “Peek Performance” event. Or that could be just the first of multiple Apple spring events.

Apple’s March 8 event

Apple sent out invitations to its March 8 event on Wednesday. While we don’t know for sure what the company will unveil next week, the rumors give us a pretty clear look at the probably lineup: iPhone SE, iPad Air and Mac(s).

The virtual event will stream from Apple HQ at 10 a.m. PST on March 8. Here’s what we expect Apple will announce. (And here’s how you can watch the Apple event live.)

iPhone SE goes 5G

Given the number of leaks related to the third-generation iPhone SE, there can be little doubt that the handset is imminent. And it’s supposed to be the first in this line of budget iOS devices with 5G cellular wireless networking.

But many other details about the upcoming entry-level iPhone indicate it won’t change much beyond that. When it’s unveiled at Apple’s spring 2022 event, expect it to retain the 4.7-inch display and Home button of the current version. It’ll also almost certainly retain the $399 price, keeping it the most affordable iOS handset.

On Friday, TF International Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo issued some predictions about the third-gen iPhone SE. In addition to 5G (with support for millimeter wave and slower sub-6GHz bands), Kuo said the new iPhone SE will pack a speedy A15 chipset. And it will come with up to 256GB of storage (with 64GB and 128GB options). He also said the current color options will remain the same: white, black and red.

Kuo predicted that mass production of the new iPhone SE will begin March 22. He expects Apple to ship as many as 30 million units this year.

A redesigned version — perhaps dubbed the iPhone SE 3 — with a 5.7-inch display supposedly will debut in 2023.

New iPhone 13 color options

The iPhone 13 has been out since autumn but Apple is supposedly ready to refresh it a bit. A tipster says a new green color option will be added.

And Apple looks set to introduce new color options for its official iPhone 13 cases, too.

Expect 2022 iPad Air 5 to get faster

After getting a face-lift in 2020, the 2022 version of the iPad Air supposedly will concentrate on updated internal specs. It reportedly will be built around an Apple A15 Bionic processor. And it will be the first in the “Air” product line with optional 5G.

The standout improvement in the iPad Air 5 reportedly will come in the form of a 12MP ultra-wide front camera with support for Center Stage so the camera follows the user during video calls.

After this model is unveiled in the next month or so, expect a revamped iPad Pro in the autumn with an M2 processor.

An M2 Mac?

What to expect at Apple spring 2022 event: New iPhone, iPad and Mac
Will a new Mac also be on the menu?
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Fairly complete pictures of the iPhone SE and iPad Air have emerged. But while there have been rumors about upcoming Macs at the spring 2022 Apple event, these are all over the place.

Cupertino recently registered three new Mac models with a Eurasian regulatory agency. Whether these will come out at the next product launch event is anyone’s guess.

One of those computers could be a redesigned iMac Pro. This will supposedly be a 27-inch all-in-one desktop‌ featuring a mini-LED screen. But the launch of this model might have slipped to summer.

A recent leak pointed to a Mac mini with Apple M1 Pro and M1 Max processors. These chips would apparently give the tiny macOS desktop the same performance as the latest MacBook Pro models.

Another possibility that has people excited is a refreshed 13-inch MacBook Pro with a brand-new M2 chip. But other sources indicate that the M2 won‘t be ready until late in 2022.

Or it could be the Mac Studio. This mid-range desktop is essentially a taller, more powerful Mac mini, and could be right around the corner.

Apple spring 2022 event is just the first of many

We might not know which of these macOS models will launch at Apple’s March 8 product event until CEO Tim Cook starts showing them off. Or more leaks could provide additional details before the event.

On the other hand, it’s possible Apple only has the iPhone SE 5G and the iPad Air 5 ready to go. But reliable sources say all of those Macs are on the way. We might just have to wait a few more months for Macs.

Fall is when a real avalanche of new Apple products is expected, including the iPhone 14, three new Apple Watch models and a new iPad Pro. But a late spring event  is also possible, and that could be where we see new MacBooks and other macOS devices.

We originally published this post at 7 a.m. on March 1, 2022. We updated it to include more details on the upcoming iPhone SE.