A date has been officially set. On Tuesday, March 8, Apple will hold its "Peak Performance" event. During it, the company is widely expected to unveil at least two new devices: the iPhone SE Generation 3 and the iPad Air Generation 5.
The Apple Maven will cover the event in real time, via live blog, starting at 9:50 a.m. Cupertino time (Pacific). For now, we discuss whether the new product introductions could have a meaningful impact on Apple stock (AAPL) - Get Apple Inc. Report.
(Read more from Apple Maven: Apple Stock: Resilient To Turbulence In 2022)
What Apple could unveil
It is nearly a certainty that the iPhone SE will be the star of the show. The second generation model, whose price starts at a very modest $399 in the US, is still not 5G-equipped and has not been updated in nearly two years.
The most recent iPad Air was unveiled in September 2020. It is currently the oldest device in Apple’s tablet lineup, since the regular iPad, iPad mini and iPad Pro have all been refreshed within the past 12 months. Expect an A15 bionic chip, better camera and 5G to be the key new features.
It is possible that a new Mac device will be introduced as well. Apple has been slowly upgrading all its desktops and laptops with a version of its home-made M1 chips. Left to be equipped with them is the iMac 27-inch and Mac Pro.
Very unlikely to be discussed are brand-new product categories. Apple’s mixed reality device is expected to be launched within the next 12 months, maybe this year already. Could CEO Tim Cook and his team have a nice surprise up their sleeves?
Do the new products matter?
On the day that Apple announced the upcoming event, Apple stock climbed 2%. The spike was barely any more pronounced than the S&P 500’s climb. It seems clear that simply confirming the event was not enough to turn investors significantly more bullish towards AAPL.
The question then becomes: could Apple stock rally just before or shortly after the product launch event? This is likely going to depend on what, exactly, the company plans on announcing.
As I explained a couple of weeks ago, the new iPhone SE could help to boost sales among the more price-sensitive consumers, particularly in emerging markets. But because most investors probably already expect the new model to come out next week, it is unlikely that the device will do much to the stock price in the short term.
What could really move the needle is the introduction of Apple’s AR and VR goggles. I suspect that Wall Street analysts have yet to fully quantify Apple’s metaverse opportunity, and a new product here could get the ball rolling. But again, mixed reality is unlikely to be a topic of conversation this early in 2022.
In the end, I believe that the decision to own Apple stock should be based on the company’s business fundamentals and longer-term prospects, not on what happens to the product portfolio in the next few days.
(Disclaimers: this is not investment advice. The author may be long one or more stocks mentioned in this report. Also, the article may contain affiliate links. These partnerships do not influence editorial content. Thanks for supporting The Apple Maven)