It is no secret that the majority of Apple’s product lines receive annual refreshes, notwithstanding the Mac mini and, of course, the Mac Pro.

While Apple does tend to stick to fairly rigid release timelines, it is still sometimes a bit of a guessing game to know exactly what will be released when.

Taiwanese website DigiTimes, famous for its chequered reliability, claims that some of Apple’s suppliers are set to benefit from increased orders for new iPads, MacBooks and Apple Watches during the year.

Although some Taiwan makers in the iPhone X supply chain have been affected by Apple’s move to scale back shipments of the device, some others including Career Technology, E&R Engineering, ShunSin Technology and Superior Plating Technology (SPT) are poised to benefit from new or increased orders from the client to support production of its next-generation iPad, MacBook and Apple Watch models in 2018, according to industry sources.

The report then goes on to suggest that we should see Apple’s annual refresh cycle begin in March, although it does not go into specifics as to which device will be the first out the door.

These makers have cutting-edge technologies or have newly tapped into the supply chains of Apple’s consumer devices. Among them, SPT, which boasts pearl bright nickel processing technology, is ready to enjoy sizeable orders from Apple, which will incorporate the technology to process adapters for its new-generation iPhone, iPad and MacBook devices, slated for debut starting in March 2018.

Given previous timescales the smart money would be on a refreshed iPad arriving first, with the Apple Watch and iPhone seemingly set to a release cadence that will see them arrive in or around September time. Apple has also not launched a new MacBook in March since 2015, again suggesting that will arrive a little later in the year. The wildcard here is the iPhone SE 2, which is one iPhone that did arrive in March two years ago. We have been hearing rumors of an iPhone SE refresh for some time now, suggesting there is still the possibility it is this device that will kick Apple’s 2018 launch cycle into gear.

(source: DigiTimes)

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