The entry-level iPad received a moderate update this year, adding the A13 chip, True Tone, and a 12MP ultra-wide front camera with Center Stage for video calls. Apple has released new versions of the entry-level iPad every year since 2017, often with minor specification and chip upgrades to maintain the device's low price, so a new version for 2022 is in line with previous years. That being said, there is as yet no indication of what the tenth-generation iPad could feature.
Initial rumors suggested that this year's entry-level iPad would feature a thinner design in a chassis similar to the iPad Air 3 and larger display, but this failed to materialize with the device's launch in the fall. It is not beyond the realm of possibility to speculate that this design could instead be headed for the tenth-generation version of the iPad.
Other rumors about the fifth-generation iPad Air have been scant, but it seems highly likely that it will at least be brought up to spec with the iPad mini. The iPad mini features the A15 Bionic chip, 5G connectivity, and Center Stage. All of these aspects debuted in Apple devices after the fourth-generation iPad Air's introduction in September 2020, but with the iPad Air now being without an update for over a year, Gurman's report reaffirms the future of the device in the iPad lineup.
Gurman also shared details about Apple's Mac and Apple Watch launch plans for 2022 in this week's newsletter.
Writing in the latest installment of his Power On newsletter, Gurman said that for 2022, alongside the Apple Watch Series 8, Apple is planning an update to the Apple Watch SE. The Apple Watch SE was released in September 2020 and has since served as a mid-level option for customers. The Apple Watch SE features the same design as the Apple Watch Series 6 but lacks advanced features such as an always-on display, blood oxygen sensor, and ECG functionality.
Apple typically doesn't update its "SE" devices, such as the iPhone SE, for several years. Given that Apple didn't announce an update this year, a new model can presumably be expected for 2022. Gurman didn't say what can be expected from the new Apple Watch SE, but it may include a slightly tweaked design and health features more in parity with higher-end models.
Alongside an update to the existing Apple Watch SE, Apple is planning an entirely new Apple Watch aimed at sports athletes. Bloomberg had previously reported that Apple recently considered launching a rugged version of the Apple Watch with bolstered durability. The new Apple Watch, according to Gurman, will feature a "ruggedized" design that may feature a case that's more resistant to scratches, dents, falls, and more.
Before its official unveiling, rumors and reports confidently suggested that the Apple Watch Series 7 would feature a flat-edged design. Those rumors failed to come true, and the Apple Watch Series 7 turned out to feature a more curved design. Those rumors, instead, may have been referring to the "rugged" Apple Watch allegedly in the works, however, that remains purely speculative.
Apple currently partners with Nike for special Apple Watch Series 7 and SE models that feature a unique watch face and come paired with special watch bands. Those models feature the same design and durability as the standard Apple Watch.
The current Apple Watch lineup features the Apple Watch Series 7, the Apple Watch SE, and the Apple Watch Series 3 from 2017. Apple is now rumored to be planning to expand the lineup to more customer demographics in 2022, such as athletes who may have so far decided against purchasing an Apple Watch due to its durability.
While there have been a large number of rumors around Apple's iMac, MacBook Air, Mac mini, and Mac Pro updates, Gurman's mention of a new entry-level MacBook Pro stands out. He previously mentioned that a next-generation entry-level MacBook Pro would contain the same M2 chip as the next-generation MacBook Air, featuring the same number of CPU cores as the M1 chip, up to 10 graphics cores, and improved performance, but this is the first time that the machine has been mentioned in over half a year.
The introduction of Apple's latest high-end MacBook Pro models, which feature larger displays, scrapped the Touch Bar, and added more ports, seems to have left the entry-level MacBook Pro in something of an odd position in the Mac lineup, leading to speculation that it could be discontinued and replaced with a high-end version of the MacBook Air, but Gurman's reaffirmation suggests that a new entry-level MacBook Pro is still on the way for 2022.
Details about the new machine are unclear, but there are significant questions around how the new entry-level MacBook Pro will take the middle ground between the new M2 MacBook Air and the current high-end MacBook Pro, and whether aspects such as the Touch Bar will remain.
Refreshes of the 24-inch iMac and high-end MacBook Pro were noticeably absent from Gurman's list of expectations for 2022. While these machines were updated this year, their absence from Gurman's list could add clout to the theory that Apple is not planning to update its Apple silicon Macs annually.
Rumors this week included the next iPhone SE reportedly coming early next year and a multi-device charger similar to Apple's canceled AirPower, while we also took a look at what we might see for a redesigned MacBook Air next year. Read on for details on these stories and more!
New iPhone SE Reportedly on Track for Release Early Next Year
According to Taiwanese research firm TrendForce, a key new feature of this iPhone SE will be support for 5G networks, while the device is also expected to be equipped with an A15 chip like iPhone 13 models.
The current iPhone SE was released in April 2020 and features a similar design as the iPhone 8, with a 4.7-inch display, Touch ID home button, and thick bezels. The new iPhone SE is expected to remain the most affordable iPhone model in Apple's lineup.
Apple Still Working on AirPower-Like Charger, Also Long-Range Wireless Charging and Reverse Charging
While it has been nearly three years since Apple announced that its AirPower wireless charging mat was canceled due to quality issues, rumors have suggested Apple is still working on a similar accessory.
Five Features to Look Forward to in the 2022 MacBook Air
While the latest MacBook Air is already a fan favorite thanks to the impressive performance of the M1 chip, rumors suggest that a new version of the notebook is already in development with an even faster Apple silicon chip and a significant redesign.
Towards the end of each year, streaming music service Spotify provides a "Spotify Wrapped" recap of each user's listening habits and favorite songs. Spotify Wrapped is a highly anticipated year-end feature that Spotify users love, and Apple Music listeners may be wondering how to get their own "Wrapped" rundown.
Each week, we publish an email newsletter like this highlighting the top Apple stories, making it a great way to get a bite-sized recap of the week hitting all of the major topics we've covered and tying together related stories for a big-picture view.
Evans Hankey, Apple's vice president of industrial design, and Stan Ng, Apple's vice president of product marketing, recently spoke to HYPEBEAST about Apple Watch bands.
Apple has a wide range of Apple Watch bands for customers to choose from, and the design of the Apple Watch allows them to quickly change their bands as they please, a typically hard thing to do with traditional watches.
When considering the ability for users to change their watch face, the watchband style and color, and the material of the Apple Watch casing itself, Hankey said customers have "an unbelievable number of potential combinations, well into the thousands" of styles to use.
One hallmark character of the Apple Watch is that bands from previous years have, so far, been compatible with the newest model in the same size. For example, with the Apple Watch Series 7, Apple increased the case sizes to 41mm and 45mm, and yet, watch bands for 40mm and 44mm Apple Watch models remain compatible.
Hankey said that backward compatibility remains a top priority for the Apple Watch team.
Since the first Apple Watch to today's Series 7, the interchangeability of the band has been a cornerstone of the product. Between the band style and color, the material of the Watch housing, and which Watch face you've selected and customized, the system affords an unbelievable number of potential combinations, well into the thousands. Each time we have refined the Apple Watch's design, we have pushed ourselves to maintain backward compatibility, which has been no small feat as the display has grown over the years.
For us, the band is not at all about technology ? each band expresses our love for materials, craft, and the process of making.
Apple Watch bands themselves include no technology, but their design plays an important role in making sure that functionality of the Apple Watch doesn't get interrupted. Ng said that Apple Watch bands feature "innovations" to ensure they're comfortable, and don't ruin the Apple Watch experience.
For example, the velcro tabs on the Sport Loops, magnets on the Milanese Loop and Leather Link, and nine sizes of Solo Loop and Braided Solo Loop make it easy to adjust or find the right band size for a perfect fit.
This ensures the watch is comfortable to wear ? not too snug and not too loose ? while also enabling features like all-day heart rate tracking, blood oxygen readings, and on-wrist detection that allow you to use Apple Pay or unlock your iPhone securely without authenticating every time.
Apple designs its own set of bands, but it also works with high-end luxury brand Hermès. Ng said that Apple's collaboration with Hermès is unique since both companies have an obsession over details, craftsmanship, and storytelling. In the remainder of the interview, the executives go into more detail about some popular Apple Watch bands, such as the Braided Solo Loop, Leather Link, and Milanese Loop. The full interview can be read here.
To take advantage of fast charging, Apple Watch Series 7 owners need an updated charging puck that supports the fast charge feature, which means all existing chargers from both Apple and third-party companies are out of date and won't offer the fastest charging speeds when paired with a Series 7. To address this, Belkin in November launched the Boost Charge Pro 3-in-1 Wireless Charging Pad with MagSafe, which is equipped with a new fast charge Apple Watch puck.
Priced at $150, the Boost Charge Pro is a multi-device charger, so it also features a 15W wireless charging pad for the iPhone 12 and 13 models (limited to 12W for the iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 13 mini), and a secondary Qi-based wireless charging spot for the AirPods and AirPods Pro.
For some time, Belkin's multi-device chargers have featured an upright charging position for the iPhone with other devices accommodated below or at the other side, but this new model is flat.
On the right, there's an Apple Watch charging puck that can be used flat or popped up for Night Stand mode, along with a flat MagSafe charging pad on the left. In the middle, there's a circular indent where the AirPods are meant to be positioned.
In terms of the amount of desk space that this design takes up, I'm not a fan. My iPhone 13 Pro Max needs to be positioned in a portrait orientation to charge, so there needs to be space both above the charger and below the charger to fit the phone. With an upright charging pad design, the iPhone is up out of the way and the charging pad can go at the back of my desk (which is up against the wall), but with this flat design, it needs to be more in the middle of my desk to have room for the iPhone.
With all three charging spots in a row, the Boost Charge Pro measures in at nine inches long and a little over three inches wide. That size won't matter on a good sized desk with a lot of room, but if you have a smaller, more compact space like I do, this design might not be ideal. Belkin says that this design is meant to be more packable, but it's too thick and heavy for that purpose, in my opinion.
In terms of build quality, the Boost Charge Pro Wireless Charging Pad has a premium feel with a solid weight that keeps it on the desk when using the MagSafe charger with an iPhone, and it's made from a soft touch material that comes in either black or white. The Apple Watch charging puck and MagSafe charger are white, and there are chrome accents for both. As you might notice in my photos, with the black model, it picks up lint and dust, and it's difficult to get off because of the texture.
There's an LED light on the charger for the AirPods charging spot, but Belkin relies on the Apple Watch and iPhone screens to confirm charging for the other devices because they're both magnetic chargers with more simple alignment.
I tested the MagSafe charging speed with an iPhone 13 Pro Max, and it was as fast as a standard MagSafe charger. The same goes for the Apple Watch Series 7 charging puck - it charged at the same faster speed as the Apple Watch charging puck that shipped with the watch. The middle spot is limited to 5W charging.
Though designed for MagSafe iPhones and the latest Apple Watch, the Boost Charge Pro is compatible older iPhones and Apple Watch models. You won't get faster charging speeds with an older Apple Watch and with the MagSafe charger, non-MagSafe iPhones will max out at 7.5W, but it works. You can also squeeze another iPhone into that middle charging spot too.
Belkin ships the Boost Charge Pro with a power adapter that has a barrel plug rather than something more universal like USB-C, but that's typical of these 3-in-1 Belkin chargers. I do wish Belkin would adopt USB-C, and I also wish we could get more variance in naming to keep the different charging options straight.
If you have the budget and the desk space for the Boost Charge Pro 3-in-1 Wireless Charging Pad, it's potentially worth picking up to get the fastest wireless charging speeds for the newest iPhone and the Apple Watch.
Most people can get by with older, slower charging options, but the Boost Charge Pro may be of particular interest to Apple Watch Series 7 users who wear their Apple Watches to bed. Faster charging can be a real quality of life improvement if you want to get to sleep but need to charge up your Apple Watch to have enough juice to get through the night.
Just about 10 minutes of charging provides sufficient battery life for an eight hour sleeping period, which is convenient. Of course, there is the option of the charging puck that came with the Apple Watch, but for those who prefer a single-cable charging solution and want fast charging, the Boost Charge Pro is the only available option right now.
Note: Belkin provided MacRumors with a 3-in-1 Wireless Charging Pad for the purpose of this review. No other compensation was received. MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Belkin. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.
Priced at $129, Southern Straps' Leather Bands are made from full grain Horween leather and hand sewn in California. Each band is vegetable dyed for rich color that will develop a unique patina with use over time.
Each Apple Watch band is stitched with a durable waxed cord material that ensures the band will hold up to daily use for years to come. Southern Straps Leather Bands come with a two-year warranty.
The Leather Bands are available in two sizes. The smallest size is designed to work with 39, 40, and 41mm Apple Watch models, while the larger size is compatible with the 42, 44, and 45mm Apple Watch models.
According to Southern Straps, the bands are designed to fit nearly all wrist sizes and can accommodate wrists sized 14cm to 25cm in circumference. Bands can be ordered in black, silver, or gold hardware to match some of the Apple Watch finishes.
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The contest will run from today (December 3) at 9:00 a.m. Pacific Time through 9:00 a.m. Pacific Time on December 10. The winners will be chosen randomly on December 10 and will be contacted by email. The winners will have 48 hours to respond and provide a shipping address before new winners are chosen.
A spokesperson for NSO Group told Reuters that it will investigate and take legal action against customers using its tools illegally if necessary.
"If our investigation shall show these actions indeed happened with NSO's tools, such customer will be terminated permanently and legal actions will take place," said an NSO spokesperson, who added that NSO will also "cooperate with any relevant government authority and present the full information we will have."
Last month, Apple filed a lawsuit against NSO Group to "hold it accountable" for state-sponsored spyware targeting Apple users. Apple also said it would contribute $10 million to organizations pursuing cybersurveillance research and advocacy.
Apple said NSO Group's "spyware product" Pegasus was used to attack a "very small number of users" across multiple platforms, including iOS and Android.
Apple's legal complaint provides new information on NSO Group's FORCEDENTRY, an exploit for a now-patched vulnerability previously used to break into a victim's Apple device and install the latest version of NSO Group's spyware product, Pegasus. [?]
To deliver FORCEDENTRY to Apple devices, attackers created Apple IDs to send malicious data to a victim's device ? allowing NSO Group or its clients to deliver and install Pegasus spyware without a victim's knowledge. Though misused to deliver FORCEDENTRY, Apple servers were not hacked or compromised in the attacks.
Apple said NSO Group's spyware could allow for attackers to "access the microphone, camera, and other sensitive data on Apple and Android devices." Apple added that iOS 15 includes new security protections and, as of November 23, Apple said it had not observed any evidence of successful remote attacks against devices running any iOS 15 version.
In a support document, Apple said it would notify users who may have been targeted by email and iMessage "in accordance with industry best practices."
If Apple discovers activity consistent with a state-sponsored attack, we notify the targeted users in two ways:
- A Threat Notification is displayed at the top of the page after the user signs into appleid.apple.com.
- Apple sends an email and iMessage notification to the email addresses and phone numbers associated with the user's Apple ID.
These notifications provide additional steps that notified users can take to help protect their devices.
Through the lawsuit and notifications, Apple aims to cut down on the abuse of state-sponsored spyware.
"State-sponsored actors like the NSO Group spend millions of dollars on sophisticated surveillance technologies without effective accountability," said Apple's software engineering chief Craig Federighi. "That needs to change."
Outlined in a news release from York Regional Police, investigators have identified a new method being used by thieves to track down and steal high-end vehicles that takes advantage of the AirTag's location tracking capabilities. While the method of stealing the cars is largely conventional, the purpose of the AirTag is to track a high-end car back to a victim's residence where it can be stolen from the driveway.
Since September 2021, police officers in York Region alone have investigated five incidents where suspects used AirTags in thefts of high-end vehicles. Thieves target any particularly valuable vehicles they find in public places and parking lots, placing an AirTag in an out-of-sight area, such as in the tow hitch or fuel cap, in the hope that it will not be discovered by the car's owner.
Thieves have no way to disable Apple's anti-tracking features that alert users when an unfamiliar nearby AirTag is tracking their location, but not all victims receive or act on the notification, or have an iPhone.
While only five thefts have been directly linked to AirTags so far, more than 2,000 vehicles have been stolen across the region in the past year, and the problem is likely to extend to other localities and countries around the world. The police expect to see AirTags used on a wider scale in an increasing number of vehicle thefts in the future.
The police have encouraged car owners to park in a locked garage if possible and inspect their vehicle regularly for trackers, especially if they receive an unknown AirTag notification, and have released two public information videos related to the growing problem.
Google has so far only developed wearOS, an operating system that the company has partnered with Samsung and others to implement into smartwatch offerings. Next year, however, Google is planning its first watch codenamed "Rohan." According to the report, the watch will feature a rounded design with no bezels.
Earlier in April, YouTube personality Jon Prosserreleased renders of what the supposed watch may look like. Prosser said the watch could launch as soon as October, but it has not yet materialized.
A "Pixel Watch" branding would fit with Google's product lineup, but the report says it's unclear what name Google will ultimately decide on. The "Pixel Watch," like the Apple Watch, will help users track their health and fitness, but to what extent remains unknown.
Apple released the Apple Watch in 2015, and in the years since, the watch has gained new features and functionality. The "Pixel Watch" is unlikely to include some advanced sensors, such as ECG or blood oxygen, in its first iteration, unlike the latest Apple Watch.
Internal documents seen by Business Insider indicate that Google wants to target the masses for its watch. A document by the company reportedly said "insufficient sizing excludes some users from wearable wristables entirely" and that it intends to design a watch that's "comfortable to wear for at least 90% of the population."
Google employees who spoke to Business Insider say Google is aiming for a launch in the Spring of 2022, but that timeline is subject to change based on feedback from a select group of employees using the new watch.
Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Brydge. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running.
Brydge keyboards on sale include those compatible with iPad Pro, iPad, iPad Air, and iPad mini. Brydge also sells keyboards that are compatible with the Surface Pro tablets, and residents in the United States can get free shipping this week.
Prince William will close the second season of Time to Walk with a holiday special episode. During the episode, Prince William discusses the importance of keeping mentally fit, going outside of your comfort zone, and the value of listening.
Time to Walk is a selection of Apple Fitness+ audio experiences on the Apple Watch that feature influential people as they share personal stories and memories, photos, and music to explore thoughts on purpose and gratitude, levity, and thought-provoking topics. Each episode is recorded while the guest walks outside or in locations that are meaningful to them.
The series has featured Dolly Parton, Anthony Joshua, Randall Park, Jane Fonda, Camila Cabello, Kurt Fearnley, Naomi Campbell, Draymond Green, Bebe Rexha, Min Jin Lee, Shawn Mendes, Stephen Fry, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Kesha, and more as guests.
Apple added that it is making donations to three charities around the world chosen by Prince William that focus on mental health: Crisis Text Line in the U.S., Shout 85258 in the UK, and Lifeline in Australia. These charity provide free, confidential crisis support.
Prince William's holiday special episode will be released on December 6, available to Apple Fitness+ subscribers on demand in the Fitness app on the Apple Watch, and, in a first for Time to Walk, it will also be streamed three times on Apple Music 1.
Apple says that listeners who tune in on Monday, December 6, at 8 a.m. local time in London and Los Angeles; and on Tuesday, December 7, at 8 a.m. local time in Sydney, should plan on a 38-minute walk.