Apple’s Asian manufacturing partners are set to start mass production of new iPads and AirPods, boosting rumours that the updated tablets and headphones could be revealed on 25th March.
The California company is set to hold a special event on that date the Steve Jobs Theatre on its Apple Park campus. Although the focus is set to be on new services, including a video streaming platform and news subscription offering, it appears upgraded hardware may also be on show.
Sources close to Apple’s supply chain say that circuit board makers Flexium Interconnect and Zhen Ding Technology are set to ramp up production of new iPads.
These are thought to include a new iPad mini 5, which will continue to offer Touch ID with a design that packs slimmer bezels and a slightly larger screen.
Meanwhile, Compeq Manufacturing and Unitech PCB are working on new components for the long–awaited AirPods 2.
Rumours about the latter have been swirling for months. Some analysts believe they will simply be tweaked versions of the current bestselling AirPods, albeit with a dedicated wireless charging case designed to work with the as–yet–unreleased AirPower charging mat.
Folding iPad imagined as Samsung rumoured to send Apple folding screens
Others, however, think these new headphones could allow ‘Hey Siri’ voice activation and come with noise cancelling tech.
Apple could choose not to show off new hardware on 25th March, instead quietly launching its new kit via press release. That would allow it to focus squarely on its new Netflix and Amazon Prime Video rival.
The latter is set to play home to older shows from networks such as HBO, as well as original content which is currently in production.
The Apple News Premium subscription service will let users access content from major media outlets for $9.99 a month.
Based on start-up Texture, which Apple acquired in 2018, it’s another part of Apple’s new strategy of looking to services to boost its bottom line in the wake of flagging iPhone sales.