Confirming earlier reports, Apple just sent out invitations to a special event in San Francisco on October 22 where the tech behemoth will likely debut multiple new iPads, and possibly the new operating system, Mac OS X Mavericks, as well as new MacBook Pros, iPods, and other goodies.
Multiple journalists reported receiving the invites in the mail this afternoon. Apple is expected to unveil new iPads and iPad minis, and probably a litany of other smaller joys. The new iPads, expected to be called the iPad 5s, should get the upgrade to Apple's super fast A5 chip first built into the iPhone 5S. They'll also get a slimmer, thinner body design, possibly some new color options, and maybe even the new TouchID fingerprint scanner if we're all really lucky. The new iPad minis should be upgraded to Retina Display capabilities to combat advances made by other mini tablets.
The event's tagline, "we still have a lot to cover," indicates this is the leftover pile of Apple announcements for this year after the new iPhone event. Some tech observers think the tagline is both an indication of what's to come and a subtle critical response. NBC's William Rothman writes:
Critics have said Apple didn't roll out enough products so far in 2013, so maybe this is Apple's rebuttal. After all, in addition to iPads, there's a MacBook Pro refresh due, and the official debut of the shiny black jet-engine-shaped Mac Pro, too. It wouldn't be weird to see upgraded iPods and Apple TV set-top devices, too — all in all, "a lot."
Whereas others feel like the invitation's message, and overall design, are pointing towards a total makeover of Apple design aesthetics. Gizmodo's Brian Barnett guesses color could invade the whole range of Apple products:
While Apple normally plants hints of what's to come in its invites, it's not entirely clear that they have here; the color options are reminiscent of the iPhone palette, which could imply that the iPod touch is going to get a new color scheme, although there have been zero rumors to that effect. And the "have a lot to cover" could imply an improved Smart Cover design, or just an array of new Smart Cover colors. Or, you know, Apple's just got more to talk about.
For now, we'll just have to wait and see.