Sept. 12 (UPI) — Early September in Cupertino, Calif., usually means one big thing — Apple’s next iPhone is about to be unveiled. Apple is expected Wednesday to unveil the next version of its popular smartphone and other hardware at an event in California that’s already created a lot of buzz and a heap of speculation.
The event will be held at the Steve Jobs Theater at Apple Park in Cupertino at 10 a.m. PDT and will be streamed live online via Apple’s website.
Apple’s iPhone is traditionally the focus of its annual September special events and the company is expected to announce three new models on Wednesday.
Reporting by Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, 9to5Mac and others throughout the past year suggests Apple will release an updated version of its latest iPhone X model, to be known as the iPhone Xs.
The phone is said to feature the same 5.8-inch display as the iPhone X but include more expensive and colorful OLED panels and L-shaped batteries to improve battery life.
A larger version of the phone with a 6.5-inch display is also expected. It would be one of the largest mass-market phones on the market, measuring about an inch larger than the screen on Apple’s current largest phone, the iPhone 8 Plus.
It’s been reported Apple will also change its naming convention for the new model and dub it the iPhone Xs Max, dropping the “Plus” suffix that’s traditionally been given to larger iPhone models.
The iPhone Xs and iPhone Xs Max will also include up to 512GB of storage — twice as much as any current iPhone model, according to Kuo.
Both phones are expected to be made available in the gray and silver colors as the current iPhone X as well as a new gold color.
A third, lower-cost model is also expected to be announced — with a 6.1-inch screen and the same A12 processor as the other iPhones, but lower storage options, less RAM, a single 12-megapixel camera, a lower resolution screen and a smaller battery. The phone will also feature aluminum edges instead of the stainless steel used on the iPhone X models and come in multiple colors like gray, red, white, blue and orange.
Apple has considered naming the new model the iPhone Xr, Bloomberg reported.
The iPhone Xs and iPhone Xs Max are expected to be released in September. Kuo said the iPhone Xs will start at $800 and the iPhone Xs Max will start at $900, while the third model is expected to ship in September and start at $600.
iPad and Macs
Apple is planning to release two new iPad pro models, marking a significant upgrade over the current devices, Bloomberg reported.
The new tablets will feature slimmer bezels and an 11-inch or 12.9-inch display. Apple is also expected to have the iPads function using its Face ID technology, instead of a home button, similar to last year’s iPhone X.
In March, Apple unveiled a new 9.7-inch iPad, aimed for use at educational institutions, with a 9.7-inch display and a $329 starting price tag.
Additionally, the company is expected to announce a new 13-inch Retina display MacBook laptop to replace the MacBook Air, as well as the first update to its Mac mini desktop computer in four years.
The new MacBook is said to be aimed at consumers and schools, while the Mac mini will seek to meet the needs of graphic designers and other professionals.
Apple Watch and AirPower
Series 4 of the Apple Watch is also expected to be announced, featuring two versions of the smartwatch.
The new watches are expected to feature the most drastic redesign since they were launched in 2014, including larger screens that span the edges of the face, allowing for more information to be displayed.
Additionally a new AirPower wireless charger is expected to be announced to supplement the new devices.
The AirPower charger was announced last year with the promise of being able to wirelessly charge an iPhone, Apple Watch and AirPod wireless headphones all at once. The product experienced development challenges, but is now planned to launch as early as September.
Early last month, Apple became the first publicly traded company to reach a trillion-dollar market capitalization, following a second-quarter earnings report that exceeded Wall Street expectations.
The event comes days after President Donald Trump suggested the price of Apple’s products may increase due to planned tariffs against China.
“There is an easy solution where there would be ZERO tax, and indeed a tax incentive. Make your products in the United States instead of China. Start building new plants now,” Trump wrote on Twitter.