Apple set to announce new iPads and M3 MacBook Air this week — what we know

Person holding the iPad Pro 2022
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Everybody has been expecting an Apple event in March to announce the M3 MacBook Air, new iPad Airs with M2, and a redesigned M3 iPad Pro with OLED display. However, it turns out that the Cupertino crew has different plans.

The company has dabbled with announcements via press releases, and according to Mark Gurman, this will be another one of those times — opting to drop them with a “series of online videos and marketing campaigns.” Even more exciting, though, sources have told MacRumors that you can expect these to be announced as early as this week.

What do we expect to see?

2023 MacBook Air 15-inch M2 shown open on a surface

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

After the rumor mill set expectations for a refreshed MacBook Air and new iPads, it turns out we can expect a little more than just these new pieces of hardware. Let’s run through the list of expected hardware releases over the next few weeks:

  • M3 iPad Pro: We’ve been hearing a lot about these new models, but the most prevalent (and likely) updates are going to be a chipset upgrade to M3 and a display transformation to OLED. That latter point is going to be huge for creatives and binge watchers alike! Alongside these changes, rumors are pointing to a smaller and thinner design, but small price bumps are expected too.
  • M3 MacBook Air: A simple but warmly welcomed refresh of the 13- and 15-inch MacBook Air is expected, as Apple’s ultra portables adopt the new 3nm chipsets. No change in price is anticipated.
  • M2 iPad Air: According to rumors, Apple has been hard at work on two new models of iPad Air. Taking a page out of the MacBook Air’s playbook, you can expect to see a new super-size 12.9-inch Air alongside the 10.9-inch model.
  • New Apple Pencils and Magic Keyboards: To complete the suite, Apple is seemingly gearing up to drop new accessories for the high-end iPads too, including a new Apple pencil and Magic Keyboards.
MacBook Air 15" (M2/256GB): was $1,299 now $1,099 @ Best Buy
The MacBook Air 15-inch M2 is arguably the best 15-inch laptop on the market for the money until Apple announces a follow-up. It packs a gorgeous Liquid Retina display (2880 x 1864), Apple's M2 CPU w/ 8-core GPU, 8GB of RAM, 256GB SSD, and a better six-speaker sound system than you'll find on the 13-inch model. In our MacBook Air 15-inch review, we called the Editor's Choice laptop an unbeatable combo of stellar performance, long-lasting battery life, and sleek design.
Price check: sold out @ Amazon | $1,099 @ B&H Photo

MacBook Air 15" (M2/256GB): <a href="https://shop-links.co/link?skuId=6534597&publisher_slug=future&exclusive=1&u1=hawk-custom-tracking&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.bestbuy.com%2Fsite%2Fapple-macbook-air-15-laptop-m2-chip-8gb-memory-512gb-ssd-latest-model-silver%2F6534597.p%3FskuId%3D6534597&article_name=hawk-article-name&article_url=hawk-article-url" data-link-merchant="bestbuy.com"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">was $1,299 now $1,099 @ Best Buy
The MacBook Air 15-inch M2 is arguably the best 15-inch laptop on the market for the money until Apple announces a follow-up. It packs a gorgeous Liquid Retina display (2880 x 1864), Apple's M2 CPU w/ 8-core GPU, 8GB of RAM, 256GB SSD, and a better six-speaker sound system than you'll find on the 13-inch model. In our <a href="https://www.tomsguide.com/reviews/macbook-air-15-inch-m2" data-link-merchant="tomsguide.com"" data-link-merchant="bestbuy.com"">MacBook Air 15-inch review, we called the Editor's Choice laptop an unbeatable combo of stellar performance, long-lasting battery life, and sleek design.
Price check: <a href="https://target.georiot.com/Proxy.ashx?tsid=45724&GR_URL=https%3A%2F%2Famazon.com%2FApple-2023-MacBook-Laptop-chip%2Fdp%2FB0C7686169%3Ftag%3Dhawk-future-20%26ascsubtag%3Dhawk-custom-tracking-20" data-link-merchant="Amazon US"" data-link-merchant="tomsguide.com"" data-link-merchant="bestbuy.com"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">sold out @ Amazon | <a href="https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1770936-REG/apple_mqkr3ll_a_15_macbook_air_silver.html?BI=20811&KBID=16572&SID=hawk-custom-tracking" data-link-merchant="bhphotovideo.com"" data-link-merchant="Amazon US"" data-link-merchant="tomsguide.com"" data-link-merchant="bestbuy.com"" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">$1,099 @ B&H Photo

What is unlikely?

Apple HomePod 2 listing

(Image credit: Future)

Based on past trends, we’re getting towards that window of time where Apple starts to announce some new variants of current products. But given how dense the new launch slate is looking, I’m guessing the following won’t see the light of day until at least a little later on this year:

  • A new color for iPhone 15 and 15 Plus: If this does happen, let it be put on the record that I’d love to see how the phone’s pastel finish plays with a deep scarlet red. Expect these in May.
  • A new HomePod with a screen: The rumor mill has started being whipped up around this next generation HomePod with a display on it. However, there’s no confirmation that it's ready for primetime yet. My guess would be that WWDC in June is going to be the time to unveil it.
  • A brand new Apple TV: According to reports at the beginning of last year, the company is planning an Apple TV 4K refresh for the first half of 2024. If this March announcement was an event, I’d be more keen to suggest this is coming sooner rather than later. But I’d probably look more towards May with something like this, alongside the new iPhone 15 color.

Whatever happens, we can expect the floodgates to open this week. Keep an eye on Tom’s Guide as we’ll be reporting on the latest from Apple as (and if) it happens.

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Jason England
Managing Editor — Computing

Jason brings a decade of tech and gaming journalism experience to his role as a Managing Editor of Computing at Tom's Guide. He has previously written for Laptop Mag, Tom's Hardware, Kotaku, Stuff and BBC Science Focus. In his spare time, you'll find Jason looking for good dogs to pet or thinking about eating pizza if he isn't already.