Apple is expected to unveil a new iPad Pro, AirPods and AirTags – its long-rumoured high-tech tag device for tracking everyday items – on March 23.
AirTags are expected to be small, circular devices with an Apple logo in the centre, possibly equipped with Bluetooth connectivity.
Users will be able to find lost items like wallets, keys, luggage or even a stolen bicycle if they have an AirTag attached to them.
The rumoured launch event date is courtesy of a respected China-based leaker with a decent track record who goes by the name of Kang.
Kang (康总) is a ‘mysterious but spot-on’ China-based source sharing news on social media site Weibo, according to Apple Track, a blog that keeps tabs on Apple rumours ‘and the sources that publish them’.
Apple is expected to unveil a new iPad Pro, AirPods and AirTags on March 23. AirTags are Apple’s rumoured tracking system for the ‘Find My’ app. Each will be small, circular and made to be attached to everyday items (pictured here in supposed leak previously published by MacRumors)
‘Kang knows exactly what Apple is working on – to the tee,’ said Apple Track, which gives him or her a 97.8 per cent ‘rumour accuracy’.
Another phone leaker Jon Prosser – who has a 78.2 per cent rating on Apple Track – already claimed March 23 is the date of Apple’s unveiling event.
Earlier this month, he tweeted ’23’ – and added that AirTags, iPad Pro, AirPods are also ready to reveal, as well as a new Apple TV.
March 23 is also the alleged date of a launch event from Chinese smartphone maker OnePlus, for its upcoming OnePlus 9, suggesting the two firms will go head to head.
The most exciting product expected to be announced by Apple is arguably AirTags, which are said to have been in development for years.
The small circular tracking tags would help users find any personal item that has an AirTag attached, by using on a map on the ‘Find My’ app.
Find My lets people track the whereabouts of their Apple devices, such as iPad, Mac, Apple Watch and AirPods, in case they get lost – but AirTags will extend this to other everyday, non-electronic items.
If the lost item is in the vicinity, such as around the house somewhere, users would be able to click an option for the AirTag to emit a noise to help them locate it, just like items already supported by the Find My app.
If the lost item with an AirTag attached was further afield – for example, if it was accidentally left in a bar in the next town – users could find it on the map.
If the item was stolen, the owner could potentially find out the address of the person who took it, as long as it still had the AirTag attached.
Rumours that Apple is developing item tracking tags first surfaced in September 2019 when MacRumors released leaked screenshots of a new ‘Items’ tab in the ‘Find My’ app.
Rumours that Apple is developing item tracking tags first surfaced in September last year when MacRumors released leaked screenshots of an item-tracking sub menu being developed for the ‘Find My’ app
The product was reportedly been given the code-name ‘B389’ during its development but is expected to be sold under the name ‘AirTags’
It’s believed personal items like keys and wallets that have AirTags attached to them will show up under the ‘Items’ tab on the app.
In April last year, Apple mistakenly uploaded a support video to YouTube that revealed the existence of AirTags, which was quickly removed.
The video, entitled ‘How to erase your iPhone’, mentioned AirTags in a shot of Settings for the Find My app.
In April last year, Apple mistakenly uploaded a support video to YouTube that revealed the existence of AirTags, which was quickly removed
On March 23, Apple is also expected to reveal its third-generation AirPods – the wireless Bluetooth headphones that come with their own charging case.
The second-gen AirPods, which were unveiled two years ago, start at £159. AirPods Pro, with additional noise cancellation technology and water resistance, cost £249.
According to MacRumors, Apple is working on more affordable ‘entry-level’ AirPods – albeit with a lack of higher-end features like active noise cancellation.
Apple is already pushing consumers towards AirPods. iPhone 12, released last October, didn’t include a pair of standard wired headphones (EarPods) in the box, unlike its predecessors, prompting outrage from some buyers.
The decision not to include wired EarPods in the box of the iPhone 12 should turn consumers towards its £250 AirPods Pro (left) and AirPods (right)
Cheaper AirPods will therefore come as good news for iPhone fans – although consumers can still buy EarPods for an extra £19.
Another leaker, Ming-Chi Kuo, also noted that Apple is expected to release new models of AirPods in 2021, 9to5Mac reported last year.
Lastly, the new fifth-generation iPad Pro will be available in the same sizes like its predecessor – 11-inch and 12.9-inch – according to Japanese site Mac Otakara, citing Chinese supply chain sources.
But the fifth-generation will have a ‘significantly improved’ processor from the Apple A12Z in the fourth generation, Mac Otakara said.
Other sources cited by MacRumors have also suggested Apple will also release new iPad Pro models with mini-LED displays and faster processors.
MailOnline has contacted Apple for comment regarding the date of its next launch event and what will be revealed.
Apple is expected to livestream the March 23 unveiling event online without an in-person audience, like its recent events, due to the current pandemic
Although the iPhone 13 is not due until the autumn, analysts have already been trading rumours about what it will look like.
In January, it was reported by the Twitter tipster Mauri QHD that Apple has created a prototype iPhone without the black ‘notch’.
The rectangular black notch, which has featured on flagship iPhone models since 2017, conceals the phone’s front-facing camera components and sensors.