Is the 'iPad Pro' going to be unveiled at Apple's special event? Here's what to expect

Apple's event invite teased that it'd been "way too long" - but exactly which products will be getting updated on Thursday?

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The Independent Tech

Apple’s not finished with us yet.

Following the unveiling of the new iPhone 6, 6 Plus and Apple Watch last month, the US tech giant is now preparing to take the wraps off a couple of new iPads and perhaps a new iMac at an event in Cupertino this Thursday.

In contrast to the big iPhone reveal this is likely to be a low-key affair. Apple knows that its tablet game can’t match the iPhone in terms of pure hype, but with sales of the iPad slowly dipping they’ll be looking to give people some good reasons to upgrade.

This doesn’t just mean making thinner, lighter hardware – Apple's software will be getting the big sell too, with the latest version of their desktop operating system (that’s OS X Yosemite) offering all sorts of cool features for people who have more than one Apple device.

Here’s what we’re expecting to hear on the 16th:

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The iPad Air was first unveiled October last year.

New iPads

Apple’s current tablet line-up is comprised of the iPad Air and iPad Mini, with a 9.7-inch and 7.9-inch display respectively. We’re expecting the iPad Air to definitely get a refresh, with Apple introducing its Touch ID fingerprint sensor to the larger tablet as well as a new processor (the same A8 that’s in the iPhone 6) and more storage.

The iPad Mini is also likely to get an upgrade, though it’s not certain if Touch ID will be on the cards for Apple’s smaller tablet. A new gold colour option, faster processor and anti-glare screen however, are hopefully in the works.

There’s also been a lot of talk recently about a new, bigger tablet – the 12.9-inch ‘iPad Pro’ – but even if Apple is planning such a beast (it could work well for businesses) then we definitely won’t be seeing anything about this until next year.

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iPhone aside, there's nothing more 'Apple' than the sleek lines of the Mac.

A new Mac

Apple’s computer business may still be titchy compared to sales of Windows devices, but the company continues to shift more and more of them, with Mac sales up 18 per cent to 4.4 million in their most recently reported quarter.

It’s likely that in order to boost this figure the company will be refreshing their all-in-one iMac, which hasn’t changed its design (although it’s become slimmer and slimmer) in two years. Rumours suggest that the major improvement however will be to the screen, with a new Retina display doubling the 27-inch model’s current 2560 x 1440 display (although it likely won’t make Retina standard on all models).

There’s also a possibility that Apple’s most affordable computer, the box-only Mac Mini (keyboard, mouse and monitor sold separately), will be upgraded with more storage and the latest Intel processors – although even if this is unveiled, it won’t be shipping until next year.

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The 11- and 13-inch MacBook Air were unveiled back in October 2010.

A super-slim MacBook Air?

Like the so-called ‘iPad Pro’, this is a rumour that’s been circulating for a while but that isn’t likely to go on sale until next year. Apple’s lightest laptop the MacBook Air was unveiled four years ago and hasn’t changed its design since, showing off the same unibody aluminium case.

But new cool-running processors mean that Apple will be able to remove the fans from the laptop and create an even slimmer design, with the rumour mill suggesting that it’ll come with a new, Retina 12-inch display (current MacBook Airs are 11- or 13-inches).

However, while Apple reveal a little bit about the new laptop later this week, there’s no way it’s going to be going on sale until next year, with the WSJ suggesting that it’ll be starting mass production this December.

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OS X Yosemite will be available as a free download to Mac users.

The big roll-out of OS X Yosemite

Apple unveiled the latest ­version of their desktop operating system at their developers’ conference earlier this year, but October 16 is set to be the software’s big launch as it goes out of beta and becomes available to consumers around the world.

Yosemite offers only a few visual changes that bring it into line with the sleek, slightly pastel-shaded look of iOS 8, but there’s a bunch of new features available – many of which will reward users who have not only an Apple computer but phone as well.

These include better message syncing across devices, being able to take a phone call on your Mac or MacBook and – best of all – it’ll be free.

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Apple's invite for the October 16th event - as cryptic as always.

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