Refreshing iPad Pro Line
Top Apple Stock News: According to Bloomberg, Apple plans to refresh its iPad Pro line in April including a new iPad mini with a larger screen and an update of the base iPad. The new models will have the same design as the current iPad Pros and come in the same 11-inch and 12.9-inch screen sizes, but with a better processor that’s “on par” with the speedy M1 chip in Apple’s newest MacBook Airs, Pros, and Mac mini and improved cameras.
Also, the 12.9-inch iPad Pro could have a Mini LED screen, which should offer a higher contrast ratio and be less susceptible to burn-in than OLED screens. Apple has tested these new iPad Pros with a Thunderbolt port, which should transfer data with higher speed than the USB-C port found on the iPad Pros now.
The iPad generated $8.4 billion in revenue in 4Q2020. iPad sales skyrocketed on demand from people working and studying from home during the pandemic. Today Apple is trying to support interest in the new iPad models while people will return to offices and schools in the coming months.
New Bet in the Smart Speaker Market
Apple has been disappointed with the original HomePod speakers and will focus its efforts on the smaller HomePod mini. The original HomePod was released for $349 but later a price drop to $299, the HomePod never commanded strong sales. At the same time, the HomePod mini was well received on the market with a retail price of $99 and it is far more competitive with Amazon’s Echo and Google’s Nest Audio.
“HomePod mini has been a hit since its debut last fall, offering customers amazing sound, an intelligent assistant, and smart home control all for just $99,” Apple said in a statement provided to various media outlets. “We are focusing our efforts on HomePod mini”.
According to Strategy Analytics, the HomePod Mini helped bolster Apple’s position and hit 7.8% of share in the fourth quarter of 2020. Global smart speaker sales hit record levels of over 150 million units last year, despite the challenging macroeconomic environment related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Apple Stock News – Systems and Methods for Gaze-Driven Recording of Video
According to MacRumors, The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office granted Apple a patent describing “systems and methods for gaze-driven recording of video.” The patent points out that head-mounted displays are used to provide a virtual reality, augmented reality, and/or mixed reality experiences and video from the device is recorded for later playback or analysis. The patent envisions a system with one or more gaze-tracking sensors, one or more image sensors, and a processing apparatus configured to access the gaze data captured. According to the patent, the system would consist of a pair of smart glasses and a separate connected device for power and storage, which could be interpreted as iPhone, iPad, or Mac.
Previously, there was information that Apple’s mixed reality (MR) and augmented reality (AR) product roadmap includes three phases: helmet type by 2022, glasses type by 2025, and contact lens type by 2030–2040″.