Apple reportedly prepping low-cost iPhone and iPad for March launch

iPhoneSE

Todd Haselton | CNBC

Apple could launch new products as early as March 8, according to a Bloomberg report.

The report says Apple is gearing up to announce a new low-cost 5G iPhone and iPad at the event and potentially a new Mac.

The launch would be Apple’s first since October 2021, when it revealed new MacBook Pro laptops. It is expected to be a live virtual launch, according to Bloomberg. Apple has been hosting virtual events since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in March 2020.

Apple currently offers a low-cost iPhone called iPhone SE, which was introduced in the spring of 2020 and sells for $399. It is the newest iPhone model with Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint sensor. The updated model could have the same design but a faster processor and 5G support, according to the report.

The new iPad is expected to be an updated version of the iPad Air, according to the report. This device was last updated in October 2020 and is currently selling for $599.

Apple’s iPad business was the only major product line to see sales decline in the December quarter. Apple said slowing sales of a $329 iPad aimed at schools and volume buyers were the main reason for the company’s decline.

Apple’s low-cost device launches are less important to the company than its traditional fall launches, which reveal more expensive and more profitable high-end iPhone models ahead of the holiday shopping season.

Apple could time the launch event with the official release of iOS 15.4, the latest version of iPhone software.

IOS 15.4 is currently in beta testing. It is expected to include several new features, including the ability to use facial recognition to unlock the device while wearing a mask, and new emoji.

An Apple spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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