Apple generates a lot of news, and it can be hard to keep up. If your mind was on other things this week, our Saturday-morning roundup of Apple-related headlines will bring you up to date.
Apple event on Monday!
And we started out the week so confidently. One of the most popular stories on the site, back in the dim and distant past of Monday, was a detailed explanation of why the next Apple event was sure to be on 26 October. Oh, we had such high hopes, such big dreams, and such flawless logic.
All of which was ruined on Tuesday night, when we got the invitations to an event on... 18 October. Surely some mistake, as they say.
But no: Apple is breaking recent tradition and holding an event on a Monday instead of a Tuesday, possibly to avoid a clash with Google's Pixel event on 19 October and possibly just to annoy me personally. Which means we're going to hear about the next raft of products (assuming you're reading this on Saturday) the day after tomorrow. Don't panic!
Insofar as we will ever be sure of anything ever again, we are reasonably sure that this event is going to focus on the Mac. Apple has a bunch of Macs overdue for a refresh, with the new MacBook Pro in particular poised for launch; the 'Unleashed' tagline and warp-speed graphic lend themselves to the announcement of faster M1X processors; the current Macs appear to be running out of stock; and all the pundits reckon it'll be Macs too.
That isn't to say, however, that the evening will be dedicated entirely to Macs, with no relief from their implacable milled-aluminium forms. (Oh, by the way, there might be a new pro-focused Mac mini, too.) We also hope that Apple will finally launch new AirPods - after all, it's only been more than two and a half years since it last updated one of its most successful and popular product lines.
Video of the week, part I
Ken Mingis and Michael Simon join Juliet Beauchamp to discuss what to expect from Apple's Unleashed event next week, including product details, benchmarks, release dates, and what the new models mean for users.
News in brief
The Republic of Ireland has announced it's ending the 12.5% corporate tax rate that has made it a hugely popular location for companies' European headquarters - including Apple, which employs more than 6,000 staff at its Cork campus. The rate will still apply to small firms, but Ireland's new agreement stipulates a minimum of 15% for large multinationals. It's unknown at this point if Apple and other companies will respond to the change by relocating.
In a bizarre twist, Apple has appealed against a legal verdict that it described at the time as a "resounding victory" and a "huge win" over Epic Games. The judge took Apple's sides in most respects, but did stipulate that the company was not permitted to ban developers from offering alternative payment solutions on the App Store; it's this part that Apple is now seeking to overturn.
The M1X chip could be a massive leap, reckons Michael Simon.
We all know the iPhone 13 handsets have better cameras than the equivalent models from the year before. But one mark of Apple's progress in this area is the news that the standard iPhone 13 has scored higher in DXOMark's camera benchmarks than the Pro model from 2020.
The Macalope has three letters for Intel's anti-Mac 'Spell' ads: LOL.
Apple TV+ is a disaster movie without a happy ending, argues Karen Haslam in this week's Different Think column. Tune in for a new controversial opinion every Tuesday, folks.
Will we still be using Apple devices in the future - or will we be living with them?
Apple has had to revise its plans for the iPhone 13 because of component shortages, and is now manufacturing up to ten million fewer units than planned. If you want one, in other words, you'll need to be quick!
An engineering student made a USB-C iPhone because Apple won't.
iPhones have got 50% more expensive in the UK since 2007, even when you take inflation and changes in GDP into account. And we're not even the worst off: prices have gone up by 72% in Canada. (The US gets away with a piffling 12% rise.)
The iPad Air is everything that's wrong with Apple's tablets, says Dan Moren.
Halyna Kubiv shows how to fast-charge an Apple Watch Series 7. You can hit 80% in 45 minutes!
Video of the week, part II
David Price and Alex Walker-Todd have been testing out the new iPhone 13 and 13 Pro. Here's their guide to choosing between the two, and their overall thoughts about the latest generation of iPhones.
Software, bugs & problems
The tenth beta of macOS Monterey has arrived; Universal Control still isn't officially available, but it is possible to enable it manually if you follow some rather complex steps. We expect the full public version of Monterey to follow soon.
iOS 15.0.2 fixes some of the bugs that plagued iOS 15 installers - bugs such as photos being deleted accidentally. It also closes a zero-day security gap.
Apple has extended an AirPods Pro service programme for sound issues. Problems could include "crackling or static sounds that increase in loud environments, with exercise or while talking on the phone", Apple admits.
The rumour mill
A new gaming-focused Apple TV is under development, according to a new report. The device is set to feature a comprehensive redesign (including a plexiglass top and a thinner chassis), a powerful A14 processor and a dedicated games controller.
The Apple Watch Series 8 - yes, sorry, we are doing this already - will come in three sizes, rather than the current two, according to an analyst with a small but extremely impressive track record of predictions. We expect 41mm and 45mm models again, plus one that's a bit bigger.
Apple deals of the week
I've embedded a list of the best current Apple deals below, but other than that, we're done for this week. See you next Saturday, enjoy your weekend, and stay Appley!
1. Apple Shopping Event
Now: Get a free gift card worth up to £160
Apple's Black Friday Shopping Event means you'll get a gift card worth £20, £40, £60, £80 or £160 when you buy selected products including iPhones, iPads, Macs, Apple Watches and AirPods over Cyber Weekend. Apple's newest products aren't included, but if you're after an older model this deal might be for you.
2. Apple iPad Air (64GB, 4th Gen, Wi-Fi + Cellular)
Now: £599 (£110 off)
Amazon has £110 off the cellular iPad Air with 64GB storage, bringing it down to a particularly tempting price.
3. Apple Watch Series 7
Was: From £369
Now: From £349 (£20 off)
4. Apple Watch Series 6 (40mm)
Now: £289 (£90 off)
Following its official discontinuation in September 2021, retailers have continued to sell the Apple Watch Series 6 at a discount.
It cost £379 when new, so this is a generous saving; bearing in mind that the Series 7 does not represent a huge step forward, this is a decent option at less than £300!
5. Apple iPhone 12 (64GB)
Now: £649 (£30 off)
Pick up the 64GB iPhone 12 in any colour on Amazon for £30 cheaper than going to Apple directly. The price is also £150 cheaper than the handset's launch price.
6. Apple iPhone 13 mini with iPad (2021)
Now: From £40 per month, no upfront cost
Pick up the latest iPad and iPhone 13 from Virgin in this Black Friday bundle.
7. Apple iPad Air with Apple Pencil
Now: £24.50 per month (2GB data)
Get an Apple Pencil with the iPad Air for just £2 more per month compared to Virgin's price for the iPad Air alone.
8. Apple iPad Pro (2021, M1, 11in)
Now: £699 (£50 off)
9. Apple 16in MacBook Pro, M1 Pro, 10-Core CPU/16-Core GPU, 2021
Now: £2,199.97 (£199.03 off)
Laptops Direct has almost £200 off the 16in MacBook Pro with M1 Pro chip, it's not as big a saving as KRCS, but it's an option if KRCS runs out of stock again (as it did earlier in the week!)
10. pCloud Cloud Storage - Lifetime 2TB
Now: £209.30 (75% off)
pCloud's Black Friday offer slashes 75% off Lifetime Access with 2TB cloud storage. The service is one of the best cloud storage platforms around.
11. Apple 14in MacBook Pro, M1 Pro, 8-Core CPU/14-Core GPU, 2021
From: John Lewis
Now: £1,799 (£100 off)
John Lewis has £100 off the 14in MacBook Pro and it's in stock, you also get a free 2-year guarantee.
UK reseller KRCS is discounting the 14in MacBook Pro more than anyone else right now, but they often run out of stock. They say to order now to secure your stock as soon as it becomes available.
12. MacPaw CleanMyMac X (1 Year) - 30% off
Was: From £34.95
Now: From £20.97 (Up to £125.79 off)
Get 30% off CleanMyMac X from MacPaw this Black Friday. You can also get up to £47.45 off MacPaw's ClearVPN which launched earlier this month.
13. Apple AirPods Pro with MagSafe charging case
From: John Lewis
Now: £185 (£54 off)
14. Apple Watch Series 6 (40mm, Cellular)
Now: £369 (£110 off)
Save £110 on the 40mm Apple Watch 6 with GPS + Cellular connectivity. There's also £110 off the 44mm option.
15. Apple AirPods 3 (2021)
From: Laptops Direct
Now: £159 (£10 off)
Laptops Direct is doing some mathematical acrobatics here - how this can be a £25 saving when the RRP is quite clearly £169 is a mystery - but this remains a good price on the new AirPods.
In fact, barring some distinctly dodgy-looking websites we wouldn't recommend you use, this is the only site we can find offering a discount at all.
16. Apple Pencil (2nd Gen)
Now: £99 (£20 off)
The second generation Apple Pencil for iPad has £20 off for Black Friday on Amazon, in a price that beats the retailer's Prime Day offer.
17. Apple 27in iMac, 3.1GHz six-core, 10th-gen Intel, 256GB SSD (2020)
Now: £1,569.97 (£229.03 off)
You can get a decent amount of money off the entry-level 27in iMac introduced in August 2020 from LaptopsDirect (although we have seen it for less in the past).
18. Apple Mac mini, 3.6GHz quad-core, i3, 256GB (2018)
Now: £579 (£220 off)
This is the Mac mini that Apple used to sell for £799 before it introduced the M1 Mac mini. for £579. Just remember that the M1 Mac mini starts at £699 now, which isn't that much more.
Apple sells this model in the refurbished store for £589, but it's out of stock right now.
19. Apple Mac mini, M1, 8-Core CPU / 8-Core GPU, 256GB
Now: £629 (£70 off)
This Black Friday deal will save you £70 on the price of the M1 Mac mini.
And that's not all. The £899 Mac mini model is £809.10 at KRCS. Get that KRCS deal here.
20. Parallels Desktop 16 for Mac
Now: £55.99 (20% off)
Parallels Desktop 17 for Mac is available at a discount of 20% as a part of the Black Friday Sale. If you're upgrading to version 15 the price drops from £39.99 to £31.99.
For more information read our Parallels Desktop 16 for Mac review, in which the software was awarded 4.5 stars out of 5.