Apple is holding its second major product launch of the season on Thursday US time. This time, it’s going to be mostly about the iPad.
But it isn’t going to be a big, splashy event like last month’s iPhone 6 and Apple Watch debut. It’s happening at Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., and will likely only feature updates to the iPad and existing products.
But there will still be a lot to go over. Here’s what we’re expecting.
According to leaks and other reports, Apple will release a new version of the iPad Air with a slightly slimmer design. It will also have a faster processor and come in a gold colour option, just like the iPhone, according to Bloomberg.
Finally, the new iPad will likely include the same Touch ID fingerprint sensor found on the iPhone. It lets you unlock the device and make purchases in the App Store without entering a password.
There have been surprisingly few reports about what kind of update the iPad Mini will get, but if there is one, it will probably be in line with the new features in the iPad Air.
But wait, wasn’t there something about a giant iPad?
Yes. A few months ago, Bloomberg reported that Apple was working on a larger version of the iPad with a 12.9-inch screen. However, if Apple does end up making the device, it’s not supposed to launch until early 2015. Apple will probably hold a separate event next year to announce the big iPad. There have been some rumours that Apple may delay the 12.9-inch iPad because the iPhone 6 Plus has turned out to be very popular.
New iMacs with high-resolution screens
Apple’s desktop computer, the iMac, will get an upgrade, including a high-resolution Retina display like the screens found on iPhones, iPads, and the MacBook Pro. Mark Gurman of 9to5Mac was the first to report that the iMac would get a better screen.
A launch date for Mac OS X Yosemite
Yosemite is the new operating system for Macs. Apple originally introduced Yosemite in June, but that was just an early version for developers. We’ll probably see Apple go over the final features of Yosemite and announce a launch date. It’s going to be a free download for many Macs.
Yosemite has a fresh new look, similar to the flat, colourful design in iOS. There are also some added features like better search, notifications, and an improved Safari browser. You’ll also be able to use a new feature called Continuity, which lets you continue working on your iPhone or iPad where you left off on your Mac, and the other way around. You can take a tour of the changes coming to Yosemite here.
A launch date for Apple Pay
Apple announced its mobile payments system Apple Pay last month along with the iPhone 6, but said it wouldn’t launch until October. We’re expecting Apple to announce an official launch date on Thursday.
Apple Pay lets you load your credit or debit card onto your iPhone and pay for stuff in stores by tapping it against a special pad. A lot of retailers like CVS, The Disney Store, and McDonald’s have partnered with Apple to accept Apple Pay. Apple Pay will also let you buy stuff within shopping apps on your phone.
That’s about it. Business Insider will have live coverage from Apple’s event Thursday. It starts at 10 a.m. Pacific/1 p.m. Eastern.