This article is based on an article from the Japanese edition of Engadget and was created using the translation tool Deepl.
It's late July, with a flurry of rumors about the announcement and release date of this year's flagship iPhone 12(tentative) series, and the Apple Silicon Mac leaks picking up steam. Let's hope that the global economy will be back on track by the end of the year.
From the September 8 announcement of the iPhone 12(tentative) to TSMC's start of 3nm risk production, we've got all the latest Apple rumors and information for you.
It's almost a truism that the A14(tentative) chip for the SoC in this year's iPhone 12 will be manufactured on a 5nm process. In the midst of all this, TSMC, the Taiwanese company that has been contracted to manufacture successive generations of A-series chips, has officially announced that it will begin risk production of the 3nm process by 2021.
In semiconductor production, the "manufacturing process" refers to circuit line widths, and in general, the smaller the number, the higher the integration and the better the performance and energy efficiency tends to be.
And according to TSMC, 3nm can improve performance by 10-15% and energy efficiency by 20-25% compared to 5nm. In other words, if 3nm technology is used in the A16 (tentatively) for the 2022 iPhone, there is a high probability that it will be that much more of a stretch than the A14.
It's been a quick two months since the 13-inch MacBook Pro with a new keyboard was announced. Since then, amidst rumors of new hardware products but no announcements, a meaningful tweet was sent out saying that "in my dream some products are ready to ship".
The tweet was made by L0vetodream, a man who has a track record of hitting the target of unannounced Apple products, so speculation was rife. In the past, his tweets have been followed by the release of the iPhone SE (2nd generation) and the new iPad Pro along with the Magic Keyboard, and the reveal of the "macOS Big Sur" name.
Foremost on the radar are the new iMacs, which Apple insider Sonny Dickson said would be unveiled at WWDC20 "in the design language of the iPad Pro," and what noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo called a "24-inch iMac", which has yet to show up. We're also wondering if this will be the "last Intel version of the Mac" separate from the Apple Silicon Mac, which should be released before the end of the year.
It's also been more than a year and a half since the AirTag, Apple's original anti-forgetfulness tag, was discovered in late 2019 with clues from within the iOS 13 beta. The aforementioned Kuo also predicted its release as a "UWB tag" in the first half of 2020, but the timing may have been readjusted just in time to coincide with the new coronavirus disaster.
The iPhone 12 series is likely to be the last shot in the game as companies are pushing their high-end smartphones to support 5G. All of its models will support both the "millimeter wave" system, which is faster but has a narrower signal range, and the "sub-6GHz" system, which is slower but has a wider coverage area, according to supply chain information.
The rumor comes from DigiTimes, a media outlet that covers Taiwan's electronics industry. Earlier this month, the media outlet stated that the "millimeter-wave" model of the iPhone 12 shipped less than expected, as if there was a separate sub-6GHz model. However, the Snapdragon X55, which Nikkei predicted late last year for all iPhone 12 models, is a second-generation 5G modem chip by Qualcomm. With support for sub-6 as well as millimeter wave, this seems like a foregone conclusion if the Nikkei report is correct.
Another DigiTimes report suggests that the 2021 iPhone is under consideration for introduction of a model with either millimeter wave or sub-6 communications for certain markets. In other words, in markets where millimeter-wave infrastructure is weak, the option to cut millimeter-wave support and install a low-cost modem that specializes in sub-6 to lower costs is speculated.
For the time being, with the global 5G infrastructure in place and in a transitional phase, the iPhone 12 could be a bargain for people who travel a lot (depending on price) overseas this year if they're equipped with a chip that can handle all frequencies.
One of the unannounced Apple products that has been rumored for years but not released is the AirPods Studio (tentative), the genuine over-ear headphones. While there was a flurry of details about the earpads being replaceable, noise-cancelling and priced at about $37,000, there were speculations that production was being delayed due to supply chain disruptions caused by the new coronavirus.
How does it operate? The news is that a patent application has been released that brings a hint to the question. Entitled "Detection of headphone rotation", there are two main points in the document: a touch interface built into the left and right earpieces that allows you to swipe down with your finger to lower the volume and forward to skip to the next song.
The other is a system that detects the angle of the headset to the ear and can interpret gestures appropriately. You often put the headband on top of your head or around your neck, or even shift it slightly, and it automatically compensates for the direction of the gesture each time.
The AirPods Studio is also a strong contender for the "new Apple products that might be announced soon" mentioned above, but it's frustrating that Apple can't hold a physical event where it's easy to unveil more than one at a time.
Some established leaker iHacktu Pro tweeted that the Apple Watch, the AirPower wireless charging mat, and the entry-level iPad will be announced on September 8, in addition to the iPhone. He also tweeted that the Apple Silicon-powered MacBook and 13-inch MacBook Pro will be announced on October 27.
It's also interesting to note that if the October 27th event is "not online" (a physical event), it has been suggested that there will be an unveiling of Apple Glass - or a lightweight AR device in the form of glasses. The theory is that this one will be released in 2023, with an announcement in 2021 at the earliest, but certainly a " wearable" physical event would be preferable due to the nature of the device.
Anyway, September for the iPhone event and October for the new iPad Pro announcement were precedent. In addition to that, it's also widely expected that the iPhone 12 series will not include a charger, so it might be compelling to announce it at the same time as the AirPower wireless charging mat.
This article is based on an article from the Japanese edition of Engadget and was created using the translation tool Deepl. The Japanese edition of Engadget does not guarantee the accuracy or reliability of this article.