Apple Spring event is coming — but when will we see new iPad Pro, iPad mini 6 and AirTags?

iPad Pro 11-inch 2021
(Image credit: Pigtou)

An Apple Spring event is happening, where we could see a new iPad Pro 2021, the AirTags and more. But the date seems to be up in the air. 

Taiwan’s Economic Daily News reports that Apple’s next big event will take place on Tuesday March 16. Suffice it to say that translation engines aren’t much help on the nature of its sources, but the article does cite two Twitter accounts — @LeaksApplePro and @FrontTron — as independently coming up with the same date.

Not so fast, though. One of the most reliable Apple reporters around, Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, says in no uncertain terms that said date is off the table.    

It gets more interesting. @LeaksApplePro responded, saying he would “investigate a bit more” before tweeting later that there would definitely be an event in March, albeit with no confirmation of the 16th.   

So while you should certainly take the March 16 date with a whole shaker of salt, something is coming. Spring events have long been a feature in the Apple calendar, with the 2020 iPad Pro debuting on March 18. In 2019, it was March 25 and in 2018 it fell on March 27, so later is certainly possible.

There’s a long list of things we might see at the Apple Spring 2021 event, but the report keeps the list of likely candidates to three: a new iPad Pro, a refreshed iPad mini and the long awaited AirTags

The star of the show will undoubtedly be the 2021 iPad Pro. While it’s not expected to be a dramatic redesign, the tablet is tipped to receive an upgraded mini-LED display, new built-in magnets to up its accessory game and 5G for those prepared to pay extra for a cellular model. 

Next up is the iPad mini 6, which hasn’t seen a refresh since 2019. That may seem a long time in Apple terms, but it’s worth remembering that before that the company hadn’t released a new mini tablet since 2015. In any case, this could be more of a dramatic redesign, given the 2019 version looked a lot like its 2015 predecessor. The rumors point to smaller bezels, which could stretch the display to 8.4 inches

Finally, there's the AirTags. The product finder will reportedly sync with other devices via the U1 Ultra Wideband sensor, making it a rival for Tile. While AirTags has been apparently finished for some time, it's been a no-show for the last few events. This time, maybe? Leaker Jon Prosser seems to think so, tweeting last week that they’re “still on for March” and that he hasn’t “heard of any further delays this time.” 

Other possibilities not mentioned include AirPods 3, AirPods Pro 2 and refreshed 2021 iMacspossibly with Apple Silicon inside – but there’s only so much that can be covered in a single event, and Prosser doesn’t seem to think these are likely this time around. 

We should (hopefully) know for sure next month.    

Alan Martin

Freelance contributor Alan has been writing about tech for over a decade, covering phones, drones and everything in between. Previously Deputy Editor of tech site Alphr, his words are found all over the web and in the occasional magazine too. When not weighing up the pros and cons of the latest smartwatch, you'll probably find him tackling his ever-growing games backlog. Or, more likely, playing Spelunky for the millionth time.