It's a big day for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), as the Cupertino, Calif.-based computer giant is ready to introduce two new iPad models, among a slew of other announcements. Invitations for Tuesday’s event, which Apple released to the press a week ago, said, "We still have a lot to cover."
Given the incredible hype surrounding today’s iPad and Mac event, which will begin at 1 p.m. EST (10 a.m. PST) from San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, most people are understandably looking for an online live stream to watch the Apple event unfold in real time. Luckily for those interested, we have a few ways to live-stream Apple's iPad 5 event. Apple will likely offer these three live-stream options about an hour prior to the actual event, but if Apple also decides to host an embeddable live-stream option, we will host the live stream of the iPad event directly on this page. But if an embeddable live-stream option never arrives, there will still be three easy ways to live stream the Apple iPad 5 event.
For computer users, Apple is planning to broadcast the iPad and Mac event on its Safari Web browser, which requires a Mac running OS X 10.6 or later. For mobile users, Apple will also live-stream the iPad event via Safari on iOS devices, including iPhone, iPad, iPad mini and iPod Touch, on any device running iOS 4.2 or later. Apple has also recently restored its “Apple Events” app on Apple TV, which means any owner of a second- or third-generation Apple TV will be able to live-stream and watch the iPad event there starting at 1 p.m. EST.
Apple will also post Tuesday's iPad 5 presentation in full directly on its website later in the day, which is tradition for the company. In fact, Apple never used to live stream any of its major media events, which made the unveilings more mysterious and exclusive. It was believed that Apple founder Steve Jobs wanted total control over his product launches, and choosing to live stream any Apple events would effectively remove control provided by the editing room. With millions of live viewers tuning in to watch the single real-time stream, Jobs may have wanted a chance to correct any on-stage blunders, which aren't uncommon for technology-related unveilings (right, Microsoft?) But the live-stream option changed with Tim Cook at the helm at Apple, likely because the former operations specialist realizes how these product announcements are great opportunities to directly and indirectly promote company products (since you need to own an Apple device to live stream the event in the first place).
As a reminder, Apple will live stream its iPad 5 event starting at 1 p.m. EST.
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What To Expect At The Oct. 22 Event
IBTimes first predicted the Oct. 22 Apple event in late September -- after also successfully predicting the Sept. 10 media event for the new iPhones in August -- and we believe we have an accurate idea of what Apple fans can expect from the Oct. 22 media event.
When it comes to the fifth-generation iPad, we believe Apple plans to release the iPad 5 with the same 9.7-inch Retina display but a smaller, sleeker and lighter form factor that more resembles the iPad mini. In fact, we believe Apple has chosen to release the iPad 5 with the exact thickness, thinner side bezels and symmetrical speaker grilles as the iPad mini, as well as a similar aluminum unibody and less-tapered back for an easier grip.
Given that last year's iPad 4 was powered by a dual-core A6X chip with quad-core graphics, we believe Apple will release the iPad 5 with an upgraded processor -- expect the same A7 chip from the iPhone 5s, or possibly even an A7X chip, which would simply be the same A7 chip optimized for the iPad 5. Whether Apple chooses to release the iPad 5 with an A7 or A7X chip, the iPad 5 may also come with the same M7 co-processor found in the iPhone 5s (which isn't really essential, but it would be a test run before the chip's mass implementation in the iWatch), and the presence of an A7-esque chip would certainly mean the iPad 5 would be capable of Touch ID.
As for the iPad mini 2, rumors and allegedly leaked photos suggest the second-generation iPad mini will be released with the identical form factor of its predecessor, which means one of two things: The iPad mini 2 could be released with slightly upgraded specs and a Retina display, or the iPad mini 2 could feature greatly upgraded specs, and possibly even a gold-color option, which would sweeten the deal for consumers hoping for an iPad mini with Retina display. An iPad mini without a Retina display may even feature Touch ID, but that's unlikely since the required A7 chip would be a major jump in processors generation-to-generation -- the first iPad mini featured the A5 chip made in 2011. If Apple chooses to release a non-Retina iPad mini this month, expect the iPad mini with Retina display to be released early next year.
The 2013 MacBook Pro with Retina display was unveiled at WWDC 2012, and this year, Apple is expected to release an update to its high-end laptop line with new Retina MacBook Pros powered by the latest chips from Intel, codenamed "Haswell," as well as Intel's new "Iris" integrated-graphics processors for enhanced performance. The 2013 Retina MacBook Pro is also expected to be released with Apple's recently debuted PCI-e based flash storage, which will help power the new Mac Pro, as well as 802.11ac "gigabit" Wi-Fi, which was featured in the 2013 MacBook Air and the company's latest AirPort and Time Capsule base stations. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also believes Apple will release the 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro with a stronger 2-megapixel FaceTime camera that can shoot 1080p HD, which would be a significant improvement over the computer's current 720p cameras.
Apple also plans to formally release the 2013 Mac Pro, which is something of a Death Star: Introduced at WWDC, the 2013 Mac Pro is a dense black cylinder designed around a thermal core and brimming with advanced technology. The new Mac Pro is twice as powerful as the previous Mac Pro, which was still the fastest and most-expandable Macintosh Apple sold despite its three years on the market, but the 2013 Mac Pro is also one-eighth the size of its predecessor, which was all accomplished thanks to a very innovative design built around balancing power and efficiency.
The next-generation Mac Pro will be released with USB 3, Gigabit Ethernet, HDMI 1.4 ports, and most importantly, six ports for Thunderbolt 2, Apple's newest connectivity technology that delivers up to 20Gbps of bandwidth to each external device. But since each Thunderbolt 2 port supports up to six daisy-chained devices, the 2013 Mac Pro is an ideal computer for transferring data between a computer and up to 36 high-performance peripherals, such as external-storage devices, PCI expansion chassis, A/V breakout boxes and even the next-generation 4K desktop displays.
The 2013 Mac Pro also features next-generation PCI Express flash storage, which is up to 2.5 times faster than the fastest SATA-based SSDs and up to 10 times faster than a 7200-rpm SATA hard drive and ideal for launching massive files or applications such as Photoshop or Final Cut. But quick connectivity and boot-up times mean nothing unless the actual tasks perform equally fast: The 2013 Mac Pro is no slouch in the computing department, with configurations up to 12 Xeon processing cores from Intel, dual-workstation GPUs with simultaneous support for up to three high-resolution 4K desktop displays, and a four-channel DDR3 memory controller delivering up to 60GB/s of memory bandwidth, which is perfect for video exporting or simulations.
The new Macs unveiled on Tuesday will ship with a new operating system, which will be an over-the-air update for current Mac OS X users of 10.8 Mountain Lion. Introduced at WWDC 2013 in June, OS X Mavericks introduces plenty of new features to the Mac experience, including the new Tabbed Finder and Tags system for keeping files orderly, and the ability to run full-screen apps on multiple displays.
Mac OS X users are used to looking at their files in separate windows, but Apple has merged these windows into orderly tabs in the release of OS X Mavericks, with each tab fitted with its own custom-view setting. With Tags in OS X Mavericks, users can save their documents with as many tags as they want, either previously listed or created on the fly, which makes it exceedingly easy to search through one’s files later. And with full-screen apps optimized for multiple displays in OS X Mavericks, users can utilize Spaces to swipe back and forth between various applications, and even drag assets across the apps. Apple TV owners can also use that display as yet another screen to do work.
In its OS X Mavericks release, Apple also makes Safari a much faster and more-effective browser for Mac users. Browsing through bookmarks, favorite sites and even links shared by others via social networks is extremely easy, and it’s all organized directly on the home page. And, of course, OS X Mavericks will be released with iCloud Keychain so you’ll never have to blame your faulty memory for having the same password for every site, or never being able to remember your various passwords.
Mac OS X Mavericks also introduces much-improved battery life for OS X power users, thanks to features like Compressed Memory, which rapidly compresses inactive memory used by the computer to give free space to any application in use; Timer Coalescing, which reduces the level of CPU interruptions and transitions by up to 72 percent from OS X Mountain Lion; and App Nap, which puts unused apps to “sleep” automatically. Apple also brought over more iOS features to the Mac in OS X Mavericks, including the new Maps and iBooks applications finally optimized for the Mac; the refurbished Notifications Center that makes it much easier to reply directly to emails, texts and FaceTime requests; and the new iCloud keychain, which is always encrypted and memorizes all of your passwords, including credit-card information.
We haven't heard much at all about Apple's most-affordable and compact Mac desktop, but it's a new year and that almost always means a new Mac Mini, even if it's just an upgrade to the processor department. Similar to the new MacBook Pros, we believe Apple will release its 2013 Mac Mini with OS X Mavericks built-in, as well as the latest Haswell chips and Iris graphics processors from Intel. Apple may even increase the minimum hard drive to 1 TB of storage, which will likely be offered in the traditional hard drive and Fusion Drive options, and configure the 2013 Mac Mini with the faster PCI-e flash. We also believe Apple will update the current Thunderbolt port from the current Mac Mini to a new Thunderbolt 2 port, and possibly get rid of the FireWire port altogether.
And finally, we believe Apple will surprise fans with a new Smart Cover for iPad. Since the iPad 5 will be released with a new form factor, Apple needs to redesign the Smart Cover anyway, but considering Apple’s hint from its event invitations, the Smart Cover may be getting more than just a simple makeover. To make the iPad an even more-effective work tool, Apple may not add any more buttons or functions on the tablet itself, but it’s possible Apple could have reworked its Smart Cover to allow for more viewing angles, and this time around, it’s possible the covers may feature an integrated keyboard.
Sure, an iPad Smart cover with an embedded keyboard would essentially look like Apple stealing from Microsoft and its Surface tablet’s Touch and Type Covers, which include QWERTY keyboards with a myriad of functions and shortcut keys. Apple’s iPad may have the Surface beat when it comes to market share, but the iPad has sorely missed having its own connected keyboard to complete the iPad ecosystem; in the past, Apple has relied on companies like Logitech to create iPad-friendly keyboards (the Ultrathin Keyboard for iPad is still the very best iPad keyboard on the market, and I highly recommend it).
An improved Smart Cover may not seem like a big deal for the iPad initially, but if Apple can successfully create an iPad cover that's protective and useful for typing, Apple will have effectively made its iPad into an extremely cheap laptop starting at just $499. If the accessory is anything like Logitech’s Ultrathin Keyboard Cover for iPad, it could act as both a kickstand and a keyboard, which would make it a highly flexible and creative solution for the iPad's longstanding problem with typing. And if Apple can make the new “Smarter” Cover can transform the iPad into a full, ideal computing solution for all things work- and fun-related, the iPad 5 with Smart Cover combination, with the right marketing, could end the PC as we know it, once and for all. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens on Oct. 22.
Apple Event Nears: Release Date Timeline For All Devices
In the past, Apple has chosen to release new iPhones and iPads on the following Friday after the unveilings. We believe Apple will follow this release-date pattern for both new iPads, which would mean the release date for both the iPad 5 and iPad mini 2 would be Friday, Nov. 1.
Are you excited about today's Apple event? Are you looking forward to the release of the iPad 5, iPad mini 2, or maybe one of the company’s other announcements? Do you think Apple has any other surprises planned for its Oct. 22 event? Sound off in the comments section below, and remember to tune into the live stream for the event starting today at 1 p.m. EST.