What to Expect From the May 7 Apple Event

Apple is set to hold its first event of the year next Tuesday, and the focus will be on the iPad. The iPad Pro and iPad Air models are set to be updated, and Apple also plans to refresh some of its ‌iPad‌ accessories. The video-based event will last for about 35 minutes.

This guide features details on everything that we're expecting to see at the "Let Loose" event that will take place on May 7.

iPad Pro

The ‌iPad Pro‌ models will be the star of Apple's event, featuring the first larger form factor OLED displays. OLED display technology will bring deeper blacks, better contrast, more vibrant colors, and better power efficiency.

Apple is said to be using the "best OLED panels on the market" with higher brightness, extended battery life, 120Hz ProMotion refresh rates, and a long lifetime for the OLED technology. OLED displays have pixels that can be controlled individually, so high dynamic range content looks more realistic and true-to-life.

iPad Pro 2024 Will Be a Huge Upgrade Thumb 1
The ‌iPad Pro‌ models will be available in 11.1-inch and 12.9-inch sizes, and both models will be thinner with slimmed down bezels. The 11.1-inch ‌iPad Pro‌ is expected to be 5.1mm thick, down from 5.9mm, while the 12.9-inch model will be 5mm thick, down from 6.4mm. The tablets will be roughly the same size as the current models, with small changes to the length and width.

It's not entirely clear which M-series chip the ‌iPad Pro‌ models will use, and there is a possibility that these will be the first devices equipped with the AI-focused next-generation M4 chip. If that doesn't happen, Apple will use the M3 that's in the iMac and MacBook Air. Either way, it'll mark a massive improvement.

Along with slimmed down bezels, the ‌iPad Pro‌'s front-facing camera is expected to be relocated to the side of the device rather than the top, so the camera will be upright when the ‌iPad‌ is in a landscape orientation. That makes more sense for video calls and filming done when the ‌iPad‌ is used with a keyboard.

There have been rumors of possible MagSafe charging support and up to 4TB of storage, and we could also see prices go up. Multiple sources have said that the OLED technology will make the 2024 ‌iPad Pro‌ models more expensive, but just how much more expensive remains to be seen. Rumors have ranged from $160 more to $700 more.

For more on the rumors that we've heard so far about the ‌iPad Pro‌, we have a dedicated 2024 iPad Pro guide.

iPad Air

The ‌iPad Air‌ will get a refresh alongside the ‌iPad Pro‌, and for the first time, Apple is splitting the Air lineup and introducing two models. The first ‌iPad Air‌ will be a direct successor to the current version, measuring in at 10.9 inches. The second model will come in at 12.9 inches, similar to the ‌iPad Pro‌.

iPad Air 12
Offering the ‌iPad Air‌ in two screen sizes will allow customers who want a large screen at a more affordable price than the ‌iPad Pro‌ to have that option. The 10.9 and 12.9-inch ‌iPad Air‌ models will not have the same OLED screen technology Apple is bringing to the ‌iPad Pro‌, instead using LCD, and that will keep costs lower.

We are not expecting design changes to the ‌iPad Air‌, except for the new, larger size. Both models will look like the ‌iPad Air‌ 4, featuring an edge-to-edge display with slim bezels and an aluminum chassis with flat, rounded edges. The ‌iPad Air‌ will be thicker than the ‌iPad Pro‌, and it will have thicker bezels.

Leaked iPad Air images point to a rear camera with a protruding pill-shaped camera bump that's similar to the design we're expecting to see with the iPhone 16. The front camera could be repositioned so that it will be at the top of the ‌iPad Air‌ when it's in landscape mode, allowing it to be in the right orientation for video calls when it's used with a keyboard. The current version has the camera at the top when it is in portrait mode.

While we won't see notable design updates, Apple may introduce new color options. The existing model comes in a range of pastel shades, so Apple could tweak the color selection.

We have more on what's expected for the ‌iPad Air‌ in our iPad Air guide.

Apple Pencil

The ‌iPad Pro‌ and ‌iPad Air‌ will be accompanied by an updated version of the Apple Pencil, which Apple might call the Apple Pencil 3. It isn't yet clear if there will be design changes, but it is expected to be the first ‌Apple Pencil‌ that supports haptic feedback.

black and white apple pencil feature
How that haptic feedback will be used remains to be seen, but code in iOS 17.5 suggested there will be a "squeeze" gesture that could do things like activate different tools and settings in apps.

There were rumors of interchangeable magnetic tips at one point, but we don't know if that's actually a feature that's coming or an inaccurate rumor. Deeper integration with the Vision Pro is a possibility, and it could perhaps work with drawing apps that support visionOS. There's also a chance that we could see the ‌Apple Pencil‌ come in both black and white rather than just white.

There is a reference to an "‌Apple Pencil‌ Pro" on Apple's homepage in Japan, and as it is related to the event, it suggests that Apple might be planning to give the new ‌Apple Pencil‌ a Pro moniker.

Apple's homepage further hints at some kind of erase feature, with the logo on the site able to be erased to reveal a new logo.

Magic Keyboard

Apple plans to overhaul the Magic Keyboard, introducing a sturdier frame made from aluminum rather than the polyurethane material used for the current version. While the frame and area around the keyboard will be made from aluminum, the exterior shell will still be made from silicone.

magic keyboard yellow 1
With the aluminum build, an ‌iPad‌ and Magic Keyboard combo will more closely resemble a MacBook, both in terms of looks and functionality. There will be a larger trackpad that is similar to the trackpad on a MacBook, so the keyboard will offer a MacBook-like typing and navigating experience.

Apple is using more premium materials for the new Magic Keyboard, so it could be more expensive. The current model is priced starting at $299 for the 11-inch version. The new Magic Keyboard is likely to work with both the upcoming ‌iPad Air‌ and ‌iPad Pro‌ models as they are similar in size (11.1 and 12.9 inches for the ‌iPad Pro‌ and 10.9 and 12.9 inches for the ‌iPad Air‌).

Other Accessories

Apple refreshes its selection of Apple Watch bands, iPhone cases, and ‌iPad‌ cases regularly, introducing new color options. We could see new summer colors for many accessories, and Apple will need to update its ‌iPad‌ cases to accommodate the new designs.

Vision Pro Expansion

Rumors suggest that Apple will expand the Vision Pro headset to additional countries before WWDC, and we're getting short on time. We could see Apple bring the Vision Pro to countries like the UK, Canada, China, and more as part of the May 7 event.

Apple Vision Pro with battery Feature Blue Magenta

How to Watch

The "Let Loose" event is set to take place on Tuesday, May 7 at 7:00 a.m. Pacific Time or 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time. Apple will live stream the event on its website and on YouTube, plus there is an option to watch it on the Apple TV. The event will last for approximately 35 minutes.

Those unable to watch or those who want to follow along with MacRumors can visit MacRumors.com for the liveblog or follow us on Twitter at MacRumorsLive for live tweet coverage.

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Top Rated Comments

Mazda 3s Avatar
4 weeks ago
Until Apple can make a software/OS usage case to leverage the performance of these ultra fast chips they put in iPads, I’ll be sitting this one out.

I have an 11-inch iPad Pro with M1 and have had little reason to upgrade. It’s fast, the battery lasts forever, and it’s my go-to consumption device. I use it for:

Vegging out after work, i.e., YouTube, Safari, reading books.
When traveling. Instead of lugging my 14-inch MBP on the airplane, I take my iPad
Sketching out projects around the house and yard that I want to work on, etc.

None of what I do requires a new tablet. M1 is already overkill. The M2 iPad Pros are crazy fast too. All this power with training wheels still in the OS department.
Score: 34 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ghanwani Avatar
4 weeks ago
I expect to be disappointed and will be disappointed if my expectations are not met.
Score: 28 Votes (Like | Disagree)
lkrupp Avatar
4 weeks ago

I expect to be disappointed and will be disappointed if my expectations are not met.
That explains almost every post in the MacRumors forums for years now.
Score: 25 Votes (Like | Disagree)
tomchr9 Avatar
4 weeks ago
What to expect?

Well, I can certainly do without the bland gallery of people uniformly wearing shirt, jeans and sneakers, devoid of any trace of a human personality, robotic body language and artificial hand gestures, delivering yet another presentation filled with Apple idiosyncrasies and platitudes. Welcome to the cult of Apple. Christ, this is getting so old.

The all new iPad Pro - now with a notch of its own, sigh. Why not a Dynamic Island, while you are at it? Ffs, Apple make up your damn mind, Notch or Dynamic Island. Stop meandering. Slimming the bezels of an iPad is a exercise in futility. Hard Pass

iPad Air, Apple Pencil and Apple Magic Keyboard, meh. By the way, drop the corny "Magic" designation, already!
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
erikkfi Avatar
4 weeks ago
That's the iPad Pro render from hell. If the iPad Pro gets a notch I'm exiting the whole ecosystem.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Gator5000e Avatar
4 weeks ago
I can only imaging how expensive the Pro series will be.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)