What to expect from Apple’s Sep “California Streaming” event

With almost atomic-clock precision, Apple last sent out invitations to media and its fans about its highly-anticipated Sep event with a “California Streaming” tagline.

Since the Covid-19 pandemic has stopped all face-to-face events, this event will again be a virtual affair with some high production value you would expect from Apple. This event will happen on Sep 14, 10am Pacific Time (Sep 15, 1am Singapore Time) and will be streamed on Apple’s website, Apple TV app and Apple’s YouTube channel.

Apple iPhone 12 running iOS 15. (Photo: Apple)

Traditionally, the Apple’s Sep, or fall, event has always been about the iPhones. And since 2016, it has also been about Apple Watches. According to the rumour mills and based on our past experiences, this is what we think you can expect from the “California Streaming” event.

iPhone 13
Even if you are not a tech expert, you will probably know a new iPhone will be announced in Sep every year. This has been happening since 2012 through the pandemic last year. Thus, this year is not going to be any different.

However, there have been some reservations from pundits if Apple will use iPhone 13, given its unlucky connotations. But it seems that Apple doesn’t believe in superstitions and will go ahead with the “lucky 13”.

A concept render of iPhone 13 series. (Photo: EverythingApplePro)

Even though it might be a number increase in name, it will be technically a “S” version or an incremental upgrade – similar to what you see from iPhone X to iPhone XS. You probably get a speed or performance increase, thanks to a new A15 chip. But do not expect major differences in design.

That said, there were reports suggesting that the new iPhone will be slightly thicker – probably in the realm of 0.2mm – from its direct predecessors. Probably negligible to the human eye but trouble for case makers.

And the iPhone 13 will still come in three screen sizes to follow the iPhone 12 series exactly. In other words, a 5.4-inch iPhone 13 mini, a 6.1-inch iPhone 13, a 6.1-inch iPhone 13 Pro and a 6.7-inch iPhone 13 Pro Max.

All these OLED displays are expected to feature low-temperature polycrystalline oxide (LPTO) panels for better battery consumption. And this allows the incorporation of Apple’s ProMotion display technology found in its iPad Pro series. In other words, these iPhones might finally get the 120Hz refresh rate found in some flagship Android smartphones.

In addition, Apple’s iconic front notch is said to be reduced in size in this iteration. Credible tech analyst Ming-Chi Kuo agreed on this and said Apple will be even switching to a hole-punch design next year (Finally! Wait, it’s next year…).

The TrueDepth camera’s notch is expected to be smaller. (Photo: 91Mobiles)

Cameras of the iPhone 13 series are expected to improve. One of the improvements is said to be Portrait Mode video. It works like the current Portrait Mode photo in which you can adjust the depth of field after you shoot the video. Also, astrophotography feature is expected to be included. Those who love to shoot the Milky Way can look forward to using the iPhone 13 series.

There are also rumours that on-display fingerprint sensor will finally debut in iPhone 13 series. But there are also reports saying nay. So, we are keeping our fingers crossed for this.

Finally, the iPhone 13 Pro versions are expected to carry up to 1TB of storage (Yes! I have more 70,000 photos in my camera roll). But expect higher pricing compared to its predecessors. I mean, what’s new right?

Apple Watch Series 7
The iPhone 13 series might not be getting any major re-design but the Apple Watch 7 is expected to feature something different from its predecessors.

The Apple Watch Series 7 is expected to feature flat sides instead of the current curved ones. This will put them more in line with the design of iPhone 12 (or 13) and iPad Pro.

A leaked render of Apple Watch Series 7 (Photo: Jon Prosser)

In addition, the watch sizes will be increased by a wee bit of 1mm with two watch case sizes of 41mm and 45mm – up from the current 40mm and 44mm. This allows the screen to be slightly bigger.

With a new Apple Watch, it has to have a newer faster processor for better performance. Thus, it is expected to feature the new Apple S7 chip.

The only issue will be availability, as Bloomberg has reported delays in the mass production of the new smartwatch. So, while the Apple Watch Series 7 is expected to be unveiled, you probably can only buy it next month.

AirPods 3
We first reported about the AirPods 3 back in Mar this year. And this time, we expect the new AirPods to be announced during this event.

Again, like reported previously, the AirPods 3 will look like the AirPods Pro with a shorter stem. But like 2nd-generation AirPods, it will not come with ear tips.

A leaked photo of AirPods 3. (Photo:

Thus, it will be an open design that some might prefer as there is nothing “intruding” into the ear canal. Plus, it will not feature active noise cancellation like the AirPods Pro.

However, you can expect better sound quality, longer battery life and probably a newer chip.

You will know for sure what are the new Apple products when you watch the event live-streamed on Apple website, Apple TV app and Apple’s YouTube channel on Sep 15, 1am Singapore Time. So, stay tuned!

Trevor Tan

Started out with dreams to become a street photographer, Trevor Tan somehow became a tech journalist with over 16 years of consumer tech experience. Maybe he plays too much video games and buys too many new gadgets.
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