Ahead of tomorrow’s Apple event, reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo is out with a new investor note highlighting his expectations for the remainder of 2020. Kuo corroborates expectations that the new iPad Air will feature Touch ID in the side button, we well as blood oxygen support on the Apple Watch.
The Apple analyst also predicts that the 5.4-inch iPhone 12 will include a “slightly narrower notch area.”
Kuo corroborates that Apple’s September 15 event will focus on the new iPad Air and the Apple Watch Series 6. He expects that the form factor of the new Apple Watch will be similar to the current Apple Watch, and that mass production of the Apple Watch and iPad Air will commence in mid-September.
The iPad Air is expected to feature Touch ID in the power button instead of Face ID. Kuo believes that “more new iPad models will adopt the side Touch ID starting in 2021.” Details here are unclear, but it could mean that a future iPad Pro adopts Touch ID in the power button as well as Face ID.
For the iPhone 12, Kuo expects an October announcement. The 6 .1-inch and 6.7-inch iPhones’ notch area is the same as the existing iPhone 11’s, Kuo says, while the 5.4-inch iPhone will have a “slightly narrower notch area for displaying the information well in the upper left and upper right corners.”
Furthermore, Kuo does not expect 120hz display refresh rate support on this year’s iPhone models due to battery life concerns, but it is on the table for the 2021 iPhones. Kuo outlines that the iPhone 12 battery capacity “becomes smaller” this year than with the iPhone 11. When paired with the battery-intense 5G connectivity, 120hz technology would have “significantly hurt the user experience.”
All four new iPhone 12 models are expected to feature 5G connectivity, and Kuo predicts that there will be two versions of all models: one version with solely sub-6 GHz and another version with mmWave 5G and sub-6 GHz. The analyst predicts that mass production of the sub-6 GHz version of the iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Max, iPhone 12 Pro, and iPhone 12 Pro Max will begin in October, mid-October, late October, and late October, respectively.
Kuo does not outline when mass production or shipments of the mmWave 5G iPhone 12 models will begin, but he notes that it will be after the sub-6Ghz variants ship.