With Apple's September event now over, we look forward to the next big Apple event. We have all the details of when the next event is expected, and what products it may feature.
- > Overview of 2018
- > Apple October 2018 event
- > What will Apple launch at the next event
- > Apple's Spring 2019 event
- > Apple WWDC 2019 event
With the excitement of Apple's September 2018 event now over, we fill you in with everything you need to know about the next Apple Event, including when and where it will take place and what you can expect to see Apple reveal during the keynote. We also have details of when Apple will hold its next event (we think October) and what it will announce there.
Occasionally Apple will drop a product on an unsuspecting public like a thunderbolt from a clear sky, but mostly it follows a recognisable pattern with big announcements being made at two key events: WWDC in June, and iPhones in September. From time to time it also holds an event in October and an event in the spring. But sometimes there are too many products to go round, and we get an extra event or two, or a product is added to the Apple Store and a press release is issued.
In this article, Macworld's grizzled Apple pundits draw on their experience covering this secretive company to tell you when and where the next Apple event will be held, and the products that are likely to be unveiled there.
Overview of 2018
So far 2018 has seen a major education-themed iPad launch in late March, followed in June by one of the biggest dates in the Apple calendar: the week-long WWDC 2018 developer conference. This saw Apple reveal details of the upcoming major updates to all four of its software platforms, but contrary to expectations there was no hardware news at all.
Some consolation was provided by the announcement in July of new MacBook Pro models.
The next item in the calendar was Apple's biggest yearly event of all: the iPhone refresh on 12 September. We saw the introduction of the iPhone XS and XS Max alongside the colourful iPhone XR and new Apple Watch Series 4, but there were several big ommissions, including the expected update to the iPad Pro and MacBook range.
Will Apple hold an October event to announce the missing products? Possibly. Read on to find out what we expect from a possible October 2018 event, along with our 2019 predictions.
Apple October 2018 event
We think an October event is looking increasingly likely as a lot of new products are thought to be in the pipeline at Apple, including a new entry-level Mac laptop and an iPhone X-style update to the iPad Pro that will remove the Home Button. Code that suggests the latter is true appeared in the iOS 12.1 beta just days after iOS 12 arrived on phones, suggesting we won't have a long wait.
In the past Apple has sometimes followed up its September press event with another smaller do in October. In the past it has unveiled iPads and updated Macs at that event.
The October event doesn't happen every year. Apple didn't hold an event in 2015 or 2017, for example, but on Thursday 27 October 2016 it held an event where it released the MacBook Pro with Touch Bar.
Other notable October events have included:
Wednesday 16 October 2014: 5K Retina iMac, Mac mini, iPad Air 2
Tuesday 22 October 2013: MacBook Pro, iPad Air, iPad mini 2
Tuesday 23 October 2012: 13in Retina MacBook Pro, iMac, iPad 4, iPad mini
Invites tend to be sent out by Apple a week before the event.
On this basis, in 2018 we anticipate that the October event could take place on Tuesday 23 October, with an invite issued on Tuesday 16 October. With the iPhone XR going on sale at the end of that week it would give Apple a chance to ramp up excitement about that model. The iPhone XR goes on sale on Friday 26 October.
Alternatively, the event could happen a week later, which would give Apple a chance to fill people in on the successes of all the iPhone launches. On this basis we could see an invite on Tuesday 23 October and the event on Tuesday 30 October (the company would then have it's financial results call two days later on Thursday 1 November, so a busy week for Tim Cook and co).
What will Apple launch at the next event
Now on to what really matters, what will Apple launch at the October event – or at least before the end of 2018…
Apple updated the iPad back in the Spring, but it's now nearly a year since the iPad Pro was last updated. All the rumours point to Apple updating the iPad Pro at its September event, with the new model using a Face ID camera rather than Touch ID – and hence having no Home button. You can expect smaller bezels and the 10.5in version may get an 11in screen without a significant change in dimensions.
Read all about the iPad Pro rumours here.
This is surely a bit of an embarrassment for Apple. It has now been a year since the company announced it would be selling its own wireless charging pad for three of its products – the iPhone, AirPods, and Apple Watch. If the company doesn't announce availability at the October event we would be shocked, although it is starting to look like Apple wants to forget it ever mentioned AirPower in the first place as the company has removed all mention of it from its website…
Read about AirPower here.
Speaking of AirPods it's also likely that we will see at least a new charging case for the AirPods alongside the AirPower, but probably new AirPods as well…
Read about AirPods 2 here.
We're hearing that an update to the MacBook Air is in the pipeline after a long wait. It almost sounds too good to be true; but apparently, rather than discontinue the MacBook Air, it looks like Apple will launch a new 13in model with a Retina display at the same price as the current Air!
Read more about Apple's new 13in MacBook Air.
Alternatively this rumoured new 13in Mac laptop could be an update to the MacBook, which is currently 12in, but could be getting a bigger screen (as well as a lower price).
We expect to see the MacBook range updated even if a 13in model doesn't join it.
Read all the MacBook 2018 rumours here.
Apple claimed the Mac mini was still important to it. So could it be planning an update to the Mac that's been untouched since 2013? The rumours suggest that it will – but it's possible that we won't see that update until 2019.
Read the latest news about Apple's Mac mini here.
We also expect that Apple will unveil updates to its range of iMacs, which like the MacBook Pro should get more cores – that's six, rather than four, core processors. In fact, we may even see an option with eight-cores!
2018 also marks twenty years since the iMac was introduced, so a good time for an update, we think.
Read our iMac 2018 news here.
Apple's Spring 2019 event
In the past, Apple has made some significant announcements at spring events. In 2015 Apple held an event called 'Spring Forward' on 9 March 2015, where it announced pricing and the launch date for the original Apple Watch and unveiled the first 12in MacBook. And on 21 March 2016, at the 'Let us loop you in' event, we got the iPhone SE, the iPad Pro 9.7 and iOS 9.3.
However, spring 2017 was a bit of a disappointment for Apple followers: instead of a full-blown event the company quietly closed down its online store then sent out a press release announcing the launch of the iPad 2017 and the red iPhone 7.
Then in 2018 Apple held an education-focused event on 27 March at a school in Chicago. The company made a series of announcements including a new iPad (with support for Apple Pencil), updates to Pages, Numbers and Keynote, and GarageBand. As well as talking at length about what it can do for teachers and students.
As for what Apple could launch in the spring of 2019, we aren't anticipating an education themed event for 2019 – unless for some unforseen reason the 13in MacBook still hasn't launched by then. However, Apple has something else that should be ready to hit the limelight by then…
Apple streaming video service
We are hearing that Apple's long awaited video streaming service that could take on Netflix may finally launch in the spring of 2019!
Read the latest news about Apple's plans for TV and Movie content here.
Apple's also rumoured to be gearing up to launch a new HomePod in 2019, so we could see one at a movie and music themed event in March 2019.
It's probably wishful thinking, but there are a lot of rumours flying around suggesting that Apple will launch a cheaper, smaller HomePod (maybe it will have Beats rather than Apple branding). Such a move would, presumably, help Apple gain marketshare in the smart speaker space, but it has a long way to go before it has anything like the market share of Amazon.
Read about the Mini HomePod and HomePod 2 here.
New over-ear headphones
We already mentioned the AirPods above, but the company is also said to be planning to introduce some new over ear headphones.
We have the rumours about the StudioPods here.
iPhone SE 2
The iPhone SE is a popular iPhone, being both the smallest and the cheapest handset on offer. If you were hoping the iPhone XR would be a replacement for the SE 2 you might be disappointed. It's still rather pricey and it's much larger than the 4in SE.
However, there are some rumours hinting that Apple may still launch a new 4in handset for those people who prefer a smaller phone. In fact, code in Xcode has indicated that a new handset could ship featuring the older iPhone 7 processor, and this could well be an update to the SE.
Read the latest news about the iPhone SE 2.
Apple WWDC 2019 event
WWDC stands for Worldwide Developers Conference. This is an overwhelmingly software-focused event, where Apple announces the flagship features in its annual operating system updates for the benefit of its software developer partners who will have to update their software to work with the new OS.
In 2018 Apple held the event from 4-8 June at the McEnery Convention Center in San Jose, California. Apple used this venue for the first time in 2017 – prior to the 2017 WWDC Apple had hosted the developer conferences at the Moscone Center for a number of years (2003 to 2016).
Tickets to WWDC are allocated via a ballot. Here's how to get WWDC tickets.
So, what can we expect to see during the WWDC keynote in 2019?
At WWDC 2017 we heard about iOS 11 and macOS 10.13 High Sierra, as well as updates to tvOS and watchOS. We also got our first look at the new iMac Pro which was previewed alongside the launch of new iMacs, as well as the updated MacBook Pro and MacBook. In 2018 it was all about iOS 12, macOS Mojave, tvOS 12 and watchOS 5, with hardware updates coming later.
It doesn't take a genius, then, to predict that WWDC 2019 will feature updates to iOS, macOS, tvOS and watchOS. Whether these will be accompanied by hardware announcements is another matter.
We are hoping Apple will reveal some more details about the Mac Pro at the WWDC event in 2019. In fact we hope to hear something about it before then – maybe at an October event in 2018. Having a unit to show off at WWDC doesn't mean that the new Mac Pro will be ready to ship following the event though.
Read about the new Mac Pro.
New Apple display
If Apple shows off the new Mac Pro we expect it will also show off the new display that it has revealed it is working on. But, again, it may be something Apple chooses to keep under its hat until later in 2019.
Read all about Apple's new display here – it could offer 8K!