Apple’s October 22nd iPad event: What to expect

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Apple’s October 22nd media event is official, and is going to be held at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco. The event invite, in typical Apple fashion, includes a cryptic reference that says “We still have a lot to cover” which doesn’t say much about what the company plans to release, but with the continuos stream of rumors and leaks, it’s next to confirmed that we’ll see new iPads.

But as we know, Apple queues up a lot of announcements for a single event, and here’s what we can expect from the event based on all the rumors and speculations we’ve heard so far.

iPad 5

The new iPad will see a big update this year, especially in the design department. Based on rumors and leaked parts, it looks like iPad 5 will sport an all-new design, mimicking the iPad mini that was unveiled last year.

The iPad 5 is said to be 15 percent thinner, 33 percent lighter and 9 percent narrower than the iPad 4. Apple will reportedly also add the 64-bit A7 chip that powers the iPhone 5s. Apple may also add a Touch ID fingerprint sensor to the iPad. For more, check out our iPad 5 rumor roundup.

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iPad mini 2

Apple is said to address the most common complaint of the first-gen iPad mini — the lack of a Retina display — with the iPad mini 2. The device will reportedly feature a Retina Display with resolution of 2048×1536 pixels (same as the iPad 4 and the iPad 5) at a pixel density of 326 ppi. The iPad mini 2 will likely be powered by a variant of the A7 chip, and may or may not include a Touch ID sensor.

Just like the iPhone 5s, the iPad mini 2 is also expected to come in multiple colors — gold, space gray and silver. For more, checkout our detailed iPad mini rumor roundup.

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iOS 7.0.3/iOS 7.1

Apple is highly expected to announce an update to iOS 7 that solves the numerous bugs that were introduced due to the huge changes in iOS 7. The iPad version of iOS 7 is especially buggy, possibly because the development of iOS 7 for iPhone started a month earlier than the iPad. With an update to iOS 7, Apple would want to squash these bugs, and make iOS 7 stable on the iPad.

The update will also include a fix for the widespread issue that prevents iOS 7 users from sending iMessages.

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New iWork and iLife apps

Apple overhauled many of its apps to go with the iOS 7 design language, but iWork and iLife apps were’t redesigned. A few days back, icons for the updated iPhoto and GarageBand apps had leaked, hinting at an imminent release, possibly during the event.

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Mac Pro

Apple gave us a sneak peek at the next-generation Mac Pro earlier this year, during WWDC. The company had said that the professional desktop would go on sale “later this fall” and it’s likely Apple announces a final release date during this event.

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OS X Mavericks

Apple previewed the next version of Mac OS X, named Mavericks at WWDC earlier this year at WWDC. Since then the company has seeded betas and a Golden Master build of the OS to registered developers, and it’s likely Apple announces a public release during the event.

However, if Apple follows past year patterns, it could skip an OS X announcement at the event, and instead announce it at its earnings call scheduled for October 28th.

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New MacBook Pro

Apple updated the MacBook Air lineup in June with Intel’s new Haswell processors and huge battery life improvements. We expect the MacBook Pro lineup to be updated with these power-efficient Haswell processors as well, though we’re not sure if Apple will devote stage time to the update or just silently update it on the online store.

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Apple TV

The Apple TV was last updated in March 2012, and it’s expected that Apple announces a new Apple TV during the iPad event. This was corroborated by current-gen Apple TVs going out of stock on Amazon. TechCrunch’s MG Siegler too had said that Apple will announce a some sort of television related product in October, though it won’t be the long-rumored full-screen Apple Television.

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A new product category?

At a recent earnings call, Tim Cook had hinted at Apple’s entry into a completely new product category. If Apple indeed plans on launching such a product this year, then it’s highly likely the company announces it at this event, since it’ll be the last media event of the year. So what could this new category be? An iWatch? Apple Television? Some other wearable fitness device? Your guess is good as ours.

Wrap up

We expect the event flow to be very similar to previous events, where Tim Cook starts off the event by talking about iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c numbers, calls up Phil Schiller to announce new products, who in turn calls Craig Federighi to talk about software, followed by a video featuring Jony Ive talking about the new hardware.

The event will be concluded by Tim Cook, who summarizes the day’s announcements and thank everyone for making it for the event.

We’ll be bringing live coverage of the event so don’t forget to join us at 10am PT or 1pm ET or 6pm GMT on Tuesday, October 22.
What would you like to see announced at the event? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.