Gizmos

The Most Exciting Rumors About Apple’s Newest Devices

Graded by how much Timpatience they’ve inspired.

Tim Cook on a stage gesturing in front of a neon Apple logo.
Apple CEO Tim Cook will announce new products on Tuesday.
Brittany Hosea-Small/AFP/Getty Images

On Tuesday, Apple will hold its annual press event showcasing its newest devices, but we already have a good idea of what CEO Tim Cook and his deputies will bring to the stage of the Steve Jobs Amphitheater. For months, reporters and insiders have been investigating supply chains and chasing down rumors about Apple’s newest gadgets. This time, the company is expected to introduce three new iPhones and a Series 5 Apple Watch, and also might provide updates on the Apple TV, MacBook Pro, and Apple software.

Should you tune in for the show—and what should you plan to buy? Based on the whispers, here’s how much Timpatience we feel for each new Apple product.

iPhone 11

The Wall Street Journal reported in January that Apple would release three new iPhone 11 models this year, successors to the iPhone X, iPhone XR, and iPhone XS. Don’t expect many dazzling upgrades, just some incremental ones before Apple gives its signature device a more dramatic update in 2020. The most obvious change this time might be the camera. The Journal reported that the highest-tier iPhone will have three rear-facing lenses. The additional lens on top of the current model’s two will be ultra-wide-angle, allowing for better zooming and more detailed photos. The other, lower-tier 2019 iPhones will have two rear-facing cameras.

According to Bloomberg, the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. created a new chip for the iPhones called the A13. The A12 Bionic chip in the 2018 iPhones was already more sophisticated than other smartphone processors on the market, so this should bring an additional leap in processing. The iPhones are also expected to have an improved Face ID feature with the capability to sense faces at different angles, as well as reverse wireless charging, which will allow the iPhone to charge other devices like AirPods. Industry experts seem confident that the new iPhones won’t support 5G and will still have price points hovering around $1,000 or more.

In terms of physical specs, the new iPhones could be half a millimeter thicker, have better waterproofing, and be more shatter-resistant. The phones may also come in dark green and purple.

Timpatience Level:

Three Tim Cook heads out of five.
Photo illustration by Slate. Photo by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images.

Apple Watch Series 5

As is the case with the iPhones, the new Apple Watch likely won’t sport any major upgrades, especially since Apple just overhauled the device’s design last year. Early leaks indicate that there could be ceramic and titanium finishes for the new models, which will come in 40 mm and 44 mm sizes. The Series 5 watches will run watchOS 6, which has a standalone App Store that allows users to download apps and software updates onto the device itself. It’s possible that Apple could add some new health features to the device, such as a native sleep tracker using the watch’s heart rate sensor. Another possible but less likely addition is blood-pressure monitoring, which would require approval from the Food and Drug Administration. The company just announced in June that it would add a menstruation tracker. Other rumored tweaks include longer battery life, processing upgrades, and a microLED screen.

Timpatience Level:

Two Tim Cook heads out of five.
Photo illustration by Slate. Photo by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images.

Apple TV

There have been leaks and rumors indicating that a new Apple TV device will debut soon, especially since the company generally introduces a new model every two years and the last release was in 2017. It’s unclear whether that’ll happen during Tuesday’s event or in October at another event. An internal build of iOS 13 contained code referencing an unreleased Apple TV 11,1 model. Insiders have speculated that the device could have an A12 processor, which currently powers the iPhone X line and iPads.

Timpatience Level:

Three Tim Cook heads out of five.
Photo illustration by Slate. Photo by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images.

Other Stuff

Apple will likely announce software updates for most of its devices, including the iPhone, iPad, and Watch, along with release dates and pricing details for Apple TV Plus and Apple Arcade. There’s a remote chance that the company will reveal a device called the Tag that can help users find lost items, similar to Tiles, and perhaps a cheaper HomePod. There’s also speculation that Apple will sell waterproof AirPods, but that’s likelier to debut in 2020. Apple will also probably announce new versions of the iPad Pro and MacBook Pro in another event in October. And finally, Apple could announce “One More Thing”—a new product or upgrade that no one saw coming. Adding a dash of reservation, we award that possibility four Tims.

Timpatience Level:

Four Tim Cook heads out of five.
Photo illustration by Slate. Photo by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images.