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8 things we didn't see at Apple's September event: AirPods 3, new MacBook Pros and more

Although Apple unveiled the iPhone 13, Apple Watch 7 and iPad Mini last week, there are a few more products we're still waiting on.

Apple Event new iPhone 13

Apple CEO Tim Cook is shown above unveiling iPad upgrades at the company's September event. 


Apple showed off a wide collection of new products at its bumper September event. The company took the wraps off its new Apple Watch 7, iPad Mini 6, updated entry-level iPad and iPhone 13 lineup with standard, Mini, Pro and Pro Max models. (Here's how the iPhone 13 versions compare.) Apple's new iPhone and iPad operating system, iOS 15 and iPadOS 15, are also now available to download

Besides the most recent September event, Apple has hosted two other events in 2021. In April, Apple unveiled new iPad upgrades, colorful iMacs, AirTags trackers, a purple iPhone 12 and more. (Here's everything Apple announced in the spring.) Then, two months later, the company held the annual WWDC developers event, where we saw a first look at iOS 15, MacOS Monterey (aka MacOS 12), WatchOS 8 and iPadOS 15

But what didn't Apple announce? Here's a list of products we've been waiting for, including (admittedly) some that are more rumor-mill wishcasting than imminent or expected releases. Still, while we didn't think most of them would make their debut at Apple's recent event, we could see some this fall at a rumored October event. Bloomberg's Mark Gurman says he expects new MacBook Pro models and the AirPods 3 to debut by the end of this year. Several other products, including the new AirPods Pro, an updated iPad Pro, revamped Mac Pros and MacBook Airs with Apple Silicon and more, could arrive in 2022, according to Gurman.

Read more: No Macs at the Apple iPhone 13 event, but the year isn't over yet

Leaked images of the possible third-gen AirPods.


AirPods 3

Rumors that Apple was getting set to release third-gen AirPods have been circulating for some time, with talk of possible delays pushing their release till the third quarter of 2021 -- speculation that seems more accurate now. Often referred to as the AirPods 3, their design, based on possible leaked photos, may share a lot with the AirPods Pro but will not feature noise-isolating ear tips (and may not offer active noise cancellation). 

16-inch MacBook Pro with M1 chip

Currently, the M1-equipped MacBook Pro is only available in a 13-inch model, and it doesn't perform much better than the M1 MacBook Air (which, admittedly, is quite the speed demon). Those waiting for the 16-inch MacBook Pro to get upgraded with the M1 chip, along with a rumored 14-inch Pro model, will have to continue to wait. Apple may be waiting on an even better chip (M2? M1X?) to power them. You can check out all the latest rumors about the 2021 MacBook Pro here

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Larger iMac powered by Apple silicon chips

At Apple's April event, the company gave us new M1-powered iMacs with flatter designs and 24-inch displays (up from 21.5 inches). But the larger 27-inch iMacs remain unchanged for now, despite rumors they are going to mammoth 30-inch screens. Maybe they, too, are awaiting the presumed M1 successor. 

Mac Pro M1

We waited years to get Apple's revamped high-end desktop computer, the Mac Pro. Now it looks like we'll need to wait even longer for an upgraded version of that computer powered by Apple's Intel alternatives. Here, again, we expect Apple to wait for an even more powerful M1 successor, so the delay makes sense.

Midrange Apple display

Apple will sell you its 32-inch 6K Pro Display XDR for a boatload of money (it starts at just under $5,000, and that's without it's nearly $1,000 stand). But owners of Mac Minis (and, now, the Thunderbolt-equipped iPad Pro) are still waiting for something that's a little more affordable. 

Apple Echo Show competitor

After Apple discontinued its HomePod, rumor was that the company had been at work on an Amazon Echo Show competitor that would fuse an entry-level iPad with a speaker. Details remain vague, and it's unclear when such a product might be released. But given that the new iPad Pro includes an ultrawide camera and the Center Stage feature, which can dynamically pan and zoom in on multiple people speaking in a shot, Apple could pull something together without needing the articulating arm on the Echo Show 10.

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Apple soundbar with built-in Apple TV

Another rumored product that makes a lot of sense for Apple to create is a soundbar for your TV that has an Apple TV "box" integrated into it. Roku already offers several soundbars with its smart TV apps built in, and Apple could easily ring the register on larger and more sonically capable models. In addition to amping up the sound from your TV, this sort of TV speaker combo could potentially allow you to stream audio to a set of AirPods Pro or AirPods Max and use Apple's spatial audio virtual-surround feature without disturbing others in your household. 

Apple AR or VR headset

OK, no one seriously expected this long-rumored product to be unveiled at the latest event. But this is the sort of thing -- like the Apple silicon chips last year -- that Apple could conceivably outline months ahead of its release in order to line up developer support. Add an Apple AR or VR headset to the rumor mill for now, but again: Don't hold your breath for it either.