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Location´╝Ü Home / Article / Rumored September Apple event could be all virtual (again)

Rumored September Apple event could be all virtual (again)

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We don't have an exact date yet for Apple's next event, but we guess it will be sometime this September.

Angela Lang/CNET

It seems like Apple's


just finished, but we're already gearing up for the tech giant's next event this fall. Although Apple has yet to announce a formal date for its next event, we speculate it could be coming in September, and it could be online-only like

last year

. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman now reports that due to

Apple's rumored decision to delay its return

to in-person work, the next event will probably be completely virtual.

Apple has had two events in 2021 so far. The first event was in April, where we got a glimpse of new

iPad upgrades


colorful iMacs


AirTags trackers


a purple iPhone 12

and more. (

Here's everything Apple announced in the spring

.) Then, two months later, we had WWDC, where we saw a

first look at iOS 15


MacOS Monterey

(also known as MacOS 12),

WatchOS 8


iPadOS 15

. We're expecting quite a bit more from Apple this year, including the

iPhone 13


Apple Watch 7


AirPods 3


iPad Mini 6

and a few more upgrades.

If you're curious about more Apple-related dates, check out CNET's guess for the

iPhone 13 release date

. You can also take a look at our

iPhone 13 wish list


Now playing:

Watch this:

iPhone 13 rumor roundup


When is the next Apple event? It could be early or mid-September

Although there hasn't been any word, official or otherwise, on the exact date and time for Apple's next event, we speculate that early or mid-September would be a safe bet.

Apple typically hosts three to four events in a year with a spring event, a summer developer conference and one or two more events in the fall. The fall events are usually scheduled in September and October. The September event tends to feature new iPhone and Apple Watch upgrades, while the October event typically features Macs and iPads.

Although Apple has announced its latest iPhone during a September event every year since the

iPhone 5

in 2012, Apple saw a change in that pattern in 2020 due to

production delays during the pandemic

. Last year's September Apple event unveiled the

Apple Watch 6


Apple Watch SE


updated iPad models

-- but no new iPhone. The company later revealed the

iPhone 12

in October. Last year's fall Apple event was online-only due to the pandemic. A livestream was available as usual through the company's website.

CNET Apple Report

Stay up-to-date on the latest news, reviews and advice on iPhones, iPads, Macs, services and software.

This year, Apple is expected to return to its usual schedule. CNET took a deep dive into Apple's event timeline back in 2018 and emerged with a compelling Labor Day hypothesis that

you can read more about here

. Taking a look at the 2021 calendar, the Labor Day rule would mark Sept. 8 as the next Apple event, but we won't know for sure until we get the invite from Apple. We do know, however, that the company likes to hold its fall event on a Tuesday or Wednesday.

Although the timeline may return to normal, Apple's next event could be fully virtual again. In his

Power On newsletter

, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman said that the event, said to be focused on Apple's latest iPhone, will be completely virtual because of the tech giant's reported decision to delay its return to in-person work due to

rising COVID-19 cases


Apple originally said that all employees would be

required to come into the office

three days a week starting in September. Gurman says that if Apple stuck with the September timeframe, an in-person iPhone 13 event would have been "plausible." Now, he expects another online-only event.

Here's a render of the iPhone 13. We're also expecting the Apple Watch 7, AirPods 3 and new iPad Mini.


New Apple products we expect: iPhone 13, Apple Watch 7, AirPods 3, new iPad Mini and more

Apple already unveiled a slew of hardware and software upgrades during its previous 2021 events, but there are still

a few things we expect

the tech giant to announce in the fall. This includes the

iPhone 13


Apple Watch 7


AirPods 3


iPad Mini 6

, a larger iMac powered by Apple's M1 chip, a more affordable Apple Display, a new MacBook Pro and Mac Pro with a rumored update to Apple's M1 chip. We're also on the lookout for an Apple competitor to

Amazon Echo Show

, a soundbar with built-in Apple TV and an

Apple AR/VR headset


iPhone 13


iPhone 13 is rumored

to feature four phones -- the iPhone 13, iPhone 13 Mini, iPhone 13 Pro and iPhone 13 Max -- according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Although there hasn't been any official word on the

iPhone 13's release date

, we speculate Apple's new iPhone could be coming in September with a

new design


upgraded cameras

, battery and specs.

Apple Watch 7

Apple's next-generation wearable could include some new key features like a sleek, flat-edged redesign, improvements in battery life and a possible blood glucose monitoring sensor. The

Apple Watch 7

will come with

WatchOS 8

, which was unveiled at WWDC.

Apple's new AirPods 3 could look similar to this concept design by Michael Rieplhuber.

Michael Rieplhuber/Twitter

AirPods 3

Apple's AirPods could be getting an update sometime this year, according to an

earlier report from Bloomberg

. Rumors suggest the

AirPods 3

will have similar features to the

AirPods Pro


spatial audio support

, a shorter stem, interchangeable tips and a smaller charging case.

iPad Mini 6

Other Apple tablets, including the iPad, iPad Air and iPad Pro have already seen updates this year, so that just leaves the iPad Mini. According to Gurman, a

redesign for the iPad Mini

"should be a go" for fall 2021.

New MacBook Pros, Mac Pros, Mac Mini, iMac and Apple Display

Last year, Apple announced that it would be producing its own chip, known as the M1, to power its Mac. Since then, there has been speculation that

Apple may soon announce a new version

of their processor for the new MacBook Pro or Mac Pro.

Apple also previously announced

a new iMac powered by the M1 processor

, but it was only the smaller 24-inch model. Bloomberg has reported that

Apple is working on processor updates

for both the Mac Mini and 27-inch iMac.

Apple may also be working on a more affordable version of its

Pro Display XDR

that was originally released in 2019. Bloomberg reported in January that Apple was in "

early development

" of a cheaper monitor.

Echo Show competitor, soundbar with Apple TV and AR/VR headset

We could see some brand-new devices from Apple this year. This includes the possibility of an

Apple competitor

to the

Amazon Echo Show

that would fuse an entry-level iPad with a speaker, a

soundbar equipped with built-in Apple TV

similar to

Roku's soundbar

, and an

Apple augmented- or virtual-reality headset


Until Apple sends its official fall event invitations, all we can do is speculate. But we'll update this story as new hints and rumors come to light. In the meantime, here's

how the iPhone 13 could compare to the iPhone 12

, whether it's

still worth it to buy an iPhone 12


iPhone 11

, and

everything coming in iOS 15

. Plus,

why isn't iPhone SE 3 on this list


Read more

Does buying an iPhone 12 now make sense or should you wait for the iPhone 13?

WatchOS 7.4: Best new Apple Watch features to try

Apple reportedly working on new iPad Mini with A15 processor

Best MacBook Air alternatives for 2021