Last-Minute Apple Event Rumors: No Two-Way Charging on iPhones, 10.2-Inch iPad Expected, and More

Just hours ahead of today's Apple Event at Steve Jobs Theater, where the company is slated to unveil new iPhone and Apple Watch models, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman has shared several last-minute expectations.


First, Gurman has revised his prediction for the names of the 2019 iPhones. He now expects the next iPhone XR, iPhone XS, and iPhone XS Max to be called the iPhone 11, iPhone Pro, and iPhone Pro Max respectively. He previously expected the lineup to include the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro in two sizes.


Second, he expects Apple to unveil a new 10.2-inch iPad today, with previous rumors suggesting it will be a replacement for the $329 lower-end 9.7-inch iPad. Pricing and other details remain to be seen.


Third, Gurman has backed analyst Ming-Chi Kuo's report that the widely rumored device-to-device charging feature on 2019 iPhones has been canceled. In a research note seen by MacRumors, Kuo said the feature has possibly been abandoned because "the charging efficiency may not meet Apple's requirements."

2019 iPhones were rumored to feature a Qi-based device-to-device charging feature allowing for an Apple Watch, AirPods, and other accessories to charge on the back of the iPhones, similar to Wireless PowerShare on the Galaxy S10.

Wireless PowerShare on Samsung's Galaxy S10

Apple's keynote begins at 10 a.m. Pacific Time. Apple will provide a live stream on its website, through its Apple Events app for the Apple TV, and even on YouTube for the first time. MacRumors will have up-to-the-minute coverage of all of Apple's announcements on our website and via @MacRumorsLive on Twitter.

Related Roundups: iPad, 2019 iPhones, iPhone 11
Buyer's Guide: iPad (Don't Buy)

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Bloomberg: 2019 iPhones Will Have Centered Apple Logo on Back

2019 iPhones will feature a centered Apple logo on the back of the devices, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman.

The centered logo will help users know where to place their Apple Watch or AirPods case to charge on the back of the upcoming iPhones, which are widely expected to have a new Qi-based device-to-device charging feature, similar to Wireless PowerShare on Samsung's latest Galaxy smartphones.

Wireless PowerShare on Samsung's Galaxy S10

In late July, an alleged Foxconn worker claimed that there will be no "iPhone" branding on the back of the iPhone 11 models, and this certainly seems more likely in light of this centered Apple logo rumor.

Taking both rumors into account, concept designer Ben Geskin has mocked up how the iPhone 11 models should look:


Gurman also reiterated that iPhone 11 models will have more shatter-resistant glass and improved water resistance, the iPhone XR will come in a new green color, and that this year's Apple Watch refresh will be relatively minor, with a focus on new ceramic and titanium casing finishes and watchOS 6.

We're just three days away from Apple's event at Steve Jobs Theater, which kicks off Tuesday at 10 a.m. Pacific Time. Apple will be live streaming the event via its website, the Apple Events app on Apple TV, and YouTube. MacRumors will have full coverage of the announcements as they unfold — stay tuned!

Related Roundup: 2019 iPhones

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Bloomberg: Apple Planning iPhone With Both Face ID and Touch ID Under Display by 2021

Apple is developing an in-display fingerprint scanner for future iPhones, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman and Debby Wu.


The report claims Apple is considering including the in-display scanner in a 2020 iPhone if testing is successful, but adds there is a possibility the tech will not be ready until 2021. This lines up with a prediction from noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who expects an iPhone with both Face ID and in-display Touch ID in 2021.

The upcoming fingerprint reader would be embedded in the display, enabling users to unlock the iPhone by placing a finger almost anywhere on the screen, and it would complement rather than replace the existing Face ID system. This would give users the convenience of two biometric authentication options.

Face ID and Touch ID each have their weaknesses, such as Face ID not working well when an iPhone is laying flat on a table, or Touch ID not playing friendly with wet fingers. With both systems, users would have the best of both worlds, using the authentication option that is better in a given situation.

Several major Android smartphone makers have adopted in-screen fingerprint scanners over the past few years, including Samsung.

Apple is also working on its first low-cost iPhone since the iPhone SE, which could launch as early as the first half of 2020, according to Bloomberg. As Nikkei reported earlier this week, the device is said to look similar to the iPhone 8, including a 4.7-inch display and a Touch ID home button.

The iPhone 8 currently retails for $599 and up, while the iPhone SE started at $399, but was later discounted to $349.


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2019 iPhones Said to Have Improved Shatter Resistance, Multi-Angle Face ID That Works Flat on Tables

Bloomberg's Mark Gurman and Debby Wu have shared expectations for Apple's fall product lineup and beyond, revealing new details plus existing rumors about upcoming iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, Mac, HomePod, and AirPods models.


Starting with the iPhone, the report claims the widely rumored triple-lens rear camera system on the higher-end models will enable a larger field of view for capturing ultra-wide-angle photos and videos, in addition to improving low-light photos. New editing tools while recording video are also expected.

The high-end iPhones will look nearly identical to the current models from the front, but at least some colors on the back will have a new matte finish, according to the report. Interestingly, he adds that the new iPhones should better withstand drops due to an unspecified "new shatter-resistance technology."

The report claims a new multi-angle Face ID sensor that captures a wider field of view will enable users to unlock the next iPhones more easily, even when the devices are laying flat on a table for example.

Other features outlined for 2019 iPhones include "dramatically enhanced" water resistance and faster A13 processors with a new co-processor known internally as "AMX" or "matrix." As for the next iPhone XR, the report corroborates rumors of it gaining a dual-lens rear camera and a new green color option.

As for the iPad, the report claims both the 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro will be refreshed in 2019 with improved cameras and faster processors. The report also backs the rumor of a 10.2-inch iPad launching later this year.

Turning to the Apple Watch, this year's changes are said to be "more muted," revolving around watchOS 6 and new case finishes. Last week, iHelpBR's Filipe Espósito discovered new titanium and ceramic 40mm and 44mm Apple Watch models based on hidden assets in the watchOS 6 beta.

The report concludes that Apple plans to launch a new 16-inch MacBook Pro with slim bezels later this year, as well as new AirPods with water resistance and noise cancelation and a cheaper HomePod with reduced tweeters as early as 2020.


Tuesday, September 10 is the widely predicted date of Apple's traditional iPhone event, just under three weeks away.


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Bloomberg: 2019 iPhones Can Charge AirPods, Cameras Will Have Increased Zoom and Auto-Correction Feature

Apple is widely expected to unveil three new iPhone models in the fall, and ahead of time, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman and Debby Wu have shared several expectations for the devices. While many of the details have already been rumored, this is still worthwhile corroboration from two reputable reporters.

OnLeaks
Apple should announce the next iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, and iPhone XR models in September, but their names are not known yet. They have been variously referred to as iPhone 11 or iPhone XI models.

Related Roundup: 2019 iPhones

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Bloomberg: Apple Watch to Get Standalone App Store, iOS 13 Will Have All-New Sleep Mode, and More

Less than a month ahead of Apple's annual Worldwide Developers Conference, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman has outlined his expectations for iOS 13, macOS 10.15, watchOS 6, and more. We've provided a summary below.


iOS 13

  • Dark Mode that can be toggled in Control Center
  • A new systemwide Sleep Mode that can be toggled in Control Center to turn on Do Not Disturb, darken the Lock Screen, and mute all notifications
  • A revamped Messages app with a WhatsApp-like feature that enables users to set a profile picture and display name, and choose who sees it, and a dedicated menu for Animoji and Memoji stickers
  • A revamped Maps app will make it easier to set frequent locations, like home or work addresses, and then navigate there. Improved grouping of frequent locations with ability to add photos.
  • A revamped Reminders app with four default sections laid out in a grid: tasks to be done today, all tasks, scheduled tasks, and flagged tasks
  • A revamped Books app with updated progress tracker and new rewards system
  • A revamped Health app with an improved view of daily activity, more comprehensive menstrual cycle tracking, and more
  • A revamped Mail app with ability to mute individual threads, block incoming email from certain contacts, and simpler folder management
  • New default swipe-based keyboard option like SwiftKey
  • New feature that will let users use their iPad as an external display for a Mac, complete with support for Apple Pencil, notifications, and more, as previously reported by 9to5Mac
  • A combined Find My iPhone and Find My Friends app, and possibly a Tile-like tag for tracking devices, as previously reported by 9to5Mac
  • User interface tweaks, including a new animation when launching the multitasking pane and closing apps and tweaks to the home screen on iPad
  • iPad is getting some unique features, including an updated interface for multi-tasking, tweaks to the home screen, and the ability to cycle through different versions of the same app
  • A more comprehensive Accessibility menu on the main page of the Settings app with improved hearing aid support and more
  • Performance improvements and bug fixes

macOS 10.15

  • Marzipan: iPhone and iPad apps can be easily ported to the Mac with new SDK that simplifies the cross-platform development process. This is said to be the first step in a plan to merge iPhone, iPad, and Mac apps into a single package that can run on any of those devices by 2021.
  • Apple Music, Podcasts, and merged Find My iPhone and Find My Friends apps
  • Screen Time on Mac
  • iMessage stickers and effects
  • Siri Shortcuts integration

watchOS 6

  • A dedicated App Store app on the Apple Watch itself
  • Voice Memos, Calculator, and Books apps
  • "Dose" and "Cycles" apps for pill reminders and menstrual cycle tracking respectively
  • Animoji and Memoji sticker support in sync with iPhone
  • New watch faces, including one with a custom "gradient" design and at least two "X-Large" versions with very large font; new complications for audiobooks, battery life of hearing aids, and more
Apple is also said to be planning to let the HomePod respond to multiple users in a future software update tied to iOS 13.

As usual, Gurman notes that some of Apple's plans could change between now and WWDC, so some features may end up being slightly different than described, kept internal, or axed entirely.

Looking ahead, Apple is said to be already working on iOS 14 with support for 5G and new AR functionality on 2020 iPhones.

Gurman's full WWDC 2019 preview is a worthwhile read.

Buyer's Guide: Apple Watch (Neutral)

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Apple-Branded Over-Ear Headphones Said to Launch as Early as Second Half of 2019

Apple is planning its own over-ear headphones for as early as the second half of 2019, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman.


Gurman briefly mentioned the more specific timeframe in a report claiming that Sonos is also developing a high-end pair of wireless, over-the-ear headphones that could be launched by next year. He previously said the Apple headphones could debut as early as this year, so the "second half" distinction is new.

Gurman previously reported that the headphones will use Apple branding and be positioned as a higher-end alternative to the company's line of Beats headphones. He also said Apple originally intended to introduce the headphones by the end of 2018, but faced development challenges causing a delay.

Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo was first to report about Apple's plans to release high-end over-ear headphones that are "as convenient as AirPods with better sound quality." They are also said to feature noise cancellation.


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Bloomberg: Apple Watch Series 4 Models Compatible With Existing Bands, No New iPad Mini This Year

Bloomberg's Mark Gurman and Debby Wu today previewed details about Apple's widely rumored trio of 2018 iPhones. Towards the end of the report, there are also a few details about the Apple Watch and iPad that we've highlighted below.


The first noteworthy tidbit is that Apple Watch Series 4 models will be compatible with existing bands, as they are said to have a similar physical size as Series 3 models and earlier. Gurman already said as much earlier this year, but there were some lingering concerns from MacRumors readers in our discussion forums.

Apple Watch Series 4 models are still expected to have up to 15 percent larger displays, as a result of slimmer bezels around the screen. They're also expected to have slightly longer battery life, along with new health and fitness features.

The second tidbit worth singling out is that the iPad mini won't be updated this year, according to Gurman. That information corroborates DigiTimes, which recently reported that "Apple so far has no further plan for the iPad mini series," which hasn't been refreshed since the iPad mini 4 launched in September 2015.

Apple's focus on the lower-cost 9.7-inch iPad may result in the iPad mini line being discontinued eventually, although Gurman hasn't specified.

We're likely just a few weeks away from Apple's usual September event at Steve Jobs Theater, with invites to the media likely to be issued this week. In addition to the new iPhones and Apple Watch Series 4 models, Apple is expected to unveil two new iPad Pros with Face ID, new AirPods, and AirPower pricing and availability.


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Gurman: Apple Considered Removing Lightning Connector on iPhone X

As a side note in his report about technical challenges facing the AirPower, expected to be released by September, well-connected reporter Mark Gurman also noted that Apple considered removing wired charging from the iPhone X.


From his Bloomberg News story:
During the development of the iPhone X, Apple weighed removing the wired charging system entirely. That wasn't feasible at the time because wireless charging was still slower than traditional methods. Including a wireless charger with new iPhones would also significantly raise the price of the phones.
Just to be absolutely clear, Gurman confirmed to me that this would have included removing the Lightning connector from the device. In fact, his report notes that Apple designers eventually hope to "remove most of the external ports and buttons on the iPhone," although this is likely multiple years away.

A few years ago, it was reported that Apple's design chief Jony Ive's end goal is for the iPhone to resemble a "single sheet of glass," while Apple has repeatedly expressed its ambitions to "create a wireless future," so the eventual removal of the Lightning connector should perhaps come as no surprise.

Apple is already well on its way towards that wireless future, with products and technologies ranging from AirPods and AirPower to its W1 and W2 wireless chips. Apple also made the controversial decision to remove the headphone jack from iPhone 7 models a few years ago, pushing users towards wireless earphones.

Still, removing the Lightning connector would certainly be another controversial decision, given it is not only used for wired charging, but also for audio and data transfer, such as syncing an iPhone with iTunes on a Mac or PC.

Removing the Lightning connector would also prevent an iPhone from directly connecting to a wide range of peripherals, including many adapters, docks, battery cases, power banks, keyboards, game controllers, audio cables, wired headphones, and other accessories authorized under Apple's MFi Program.

In many cases, however, wireless alternatives would be available. It's possible to sync an iPhone with iTunes over Wi-Fi, for example, while wired headphone users can go wireless, Bluetooth-enabled game controllers are available, and upright-positioned wireless chargers can double as a docking station.

Of course, there would be some friction with this transition, just like when Apple switched from its 30-pin dock connector to Lightning in 2012, and removed the headphone jack on the iPhone 7. In both of those cases, however, the controversy eventually died down as many users came to accept the new reality.

It's also worth noting that Apple considers a lot of different ideas internally that might never materialize in a public-facing product.

At this point, it appears like the Lightning connector on iPhones should live on for at least a few years. Rumors suggest Apple will bundle a faster 18W charger with a USB-C port with iPhones released in 2018, which would connect to the devices with a Lightning to USB-C cable included in the box.


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