Since announcing plans for a press event on March 27, Apple has remained silent about what it will unveil. But that isn’t stopping the rumor mill.
Over the past several days, news reports, including one from Bloomberg, suggest that Apple will introduce a budget-friendly $259 iPad at the education-focused event. There’s also talk that a cheaper MacBook notebook that costs less than $1,000 will be unveiled.
But the press event isn’t expected to include any major announcements, like a dramatically redesigned iPhone or iPad. Still, it should offer insight into Apple’s efforts to appeal to students, teachers, and consumers on a budget.
But there was more to Apple’s week than talk of education. From rumors about a possible foldable iPhone to talk of trouble for the company’s iPhone X, it was a decidedly interesting week for Apple fans. So read on for more about some of the biggest Apple headlines from the past several days:
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- Apple is working on a foldable iPhone that it could release in 2020, Bank of America Merrill Lynch analysts said in a research note on Friday. The analysts talked with Apple suppliers in Asia who said the company is exploring developing an iPhone with a screen that would fold over itself. When the iPhone unfolds, the screen would expand tablet size, according to the report. Apple was previously rumored to be working with LG on a foldable iPhone.
- Apple is rapidly expanding its self-driving car testing. According to a Financial Times report this week, Apple now has permits to test 45 self-driving cars in California That’s more than the 39 permits for Tesla and 29 for Uber. General Motors’ Cruise division has 110 permits—the most of any company. Apple is believed to be developing self-driving car technology and not actual cars. That technology would be sold to carmakers.
- Tesla this week updated its iPhone app to integrate Siri virtual personal assistant with its Model 3 sedan. Siri availability in the app allows Model 3 owners to give voice commands to lock their doors, review how much charge is left on their batteries, and more.
- In a note to investors this week, Longbow Research analyst Shawn Harrison and Gausia Chowdhury reported that Apple’s iPhone X didn’t sell well during the holiday season. The analysts cited sources who said Apple has ordered fewer units from manufacturers than it had initially forecast due to lower-than-expected demand for the $999 iPhone. Nomura analysts Anne Lee and Jeffery Kvaal followed that note this week with their own, saying iPhone X demand “is flagging” because of the hefty price tag.
- Apple is developing new screen technology for future products, Bloomberg reported this week. That technology, called MicroLED, makes for slimmer and brighter screens than those that use other technology, like liquid crystals or organic light-emitting diodes. MicroLED displays are also more energy-efficient, which should translate to longer battery life on Apple Watch, iPhone, and other products. It’s unknown, however, when Apple may add MicroLED to future products.
One more thing…Apple Watch and iPhone owners are mistakenly calling emergency services, according to reports. Apple Watch owners who sleep while wearing the smartwatch are accidentally calling 911 because the device’s crown is set to automatically send for help when it’s pressed for several seconds. IPhone owners who mistakenly press buttons on the side of their phones too many times also mistakenly call emergency services.