Apple is expected to launch its first 5G iPhone – iPhone 12 this year, with edges and corner redesign like the latest 4th gen iPad Pro 2020 model. This year along with four iPhones, we are expecting Apple will announce two new devices, the long-awaited smaller version of HomePod and a new accessory AirTags.
At least two of the four iPhone 12 models are expecting to feature a redesigned chassis that looks less like iPhone 11 and more like iPhone 5. Bloomberg reports that the iPhone 12 models with high-end features will get a new frame. The phone body will have flat stainless steel edges and more sharply rounded corners like one of its latest iPad Pro that Apple launched back in 2018. However, it is unclear whether the other two low-end iPhone 12 models will get a redesign or not.
The notch for TrueDepth Camera used for Face ID and many other sensors is also expected to get smaller this year. Apple might remove the cutouts at the top of the screen for future designs and may put all the tech in one ultra-slim bezel on the top.
One of the expensive iPhone 12 models will have a bigger screen of size than the iPhone 11 Pro Max with smaller screen bezels. It is expected that the top of the line iPhone 12 will have a display screen of greater than 6.5 inches.
In the rear, two of the most expensive models of iPhone 12 will feature a LiDAR– Light Detection and Ranging Scanner, which first kicked off with the iPad Pro 2020. Apple claims that the LiDAR scanner can measure the distance between the device and surrounding objects accurately up to 5 meters in real-time, which makes its latest iPad “the world’s best device for augmented reality.” The company will now use the LiDAR scanner in iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max to let users experience the augmented reality (AR) at a new level along with the triple camera setup.
With such an up-gradation, it is not surprising that Apple will use its in-house designed new 5-nm System on Chip A14 produced by TSMC – Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company.
There are thin chances iPhone 12 will include USB-C — as found in iPad Pro.
Mini HomePod and AirTags
A mini variant of HomePod is also expected to be announced along with iPhone 12 later this year. HomePod, the smart speaker announced back in 2017, has seen itself struggling against its competitors i.e., Alexa and Google Home. Google cheapest Nest Mini smart speaker costs just $29.
The new mini HomePod will be about half the size of the original, keeping a similar design and planned to launch in the second half of 2020, analysts believe with iPhone 12. The new speakers will be the best alternatives for Amazon’s inexpensive offerings. Even though, Amazon is also offering 40% off on its third generation Echo speaker.
Apple is currently selling the HomePods for $299, but it is unclear that what price Apple will quote for its mini HomePod. The mini smart speaker is expected to have a great sound like its older version. The Siri powered new mini HomePod will feature basic audio playback and Apple Music, and connectivity with other smart home devices via the Home app. Question is how good Siri is against Alexa and Google Assistant?
People familiar with HomePod development said that Apple has hired new teams to work on improved HomePod’s connectivity with smart home devices. The new teams are also working on music streaming services as well as Siri – Apple’s voice assistant. We are hopeful that the cheaper and smaller HomePod will undoubtedly help Apple better compete in the smart speaker market place. HomePod software is also now reportedly based on tvOS instead of iOS.
The long-rumored Bluetooth accessory ‘AirTags’ is expected to launch this year as well. The new AirTags will use magnetic wireless charging and will be completely waterproof. The Tile tracker competitor would be thin, small, and puck-shaped, which will be easy to carry in the pockets or attached with keychains. As per the accurate analyst, Ming-Chi Kuo believes that Universal Scientific Industrial will begin supplying the system for AirTags by the mid of 2020. AirTags could help users to find keys and small stuff via the “Find me” app just like AirPods or iPhone.
Know more about AirTags: iPhone SE (or iPhone 9) likely to be released this month, what specs we know so far?
The new iPhones usually debut and launch in September each year but, due to the COVID-19 pandemic this year, the expectations for the delay in the official launch of Apple’s new products are high. Bloomberg also expects that the new models for iPhone 12 can be several weeks late from the targeted September.
MacBook Pro hardware, along with a refreshed Apple TV as well as an iMac refresh and an entry-level iPad, are also expecting to release this year. The people familiar with Apple’s product roadmap said that the company has already started working on its new products.
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Featured image: Justin Sullivan / Getty