NCR - Digital-First Banking Tracker - October 2023 Banner

Apple’s New Macs Could Debut at Pre-Halloween Event

person carrying Mac laptop

Apple is reportedly offering its fans a pre-Halloween treat: a glimpse at new Mac laptops.

As CNBC reported Tuesday (Oct. 24), the tech giant has sent out invitations for a launch event due to be streamed on its website Oct. 30. The report notes that the laptops are expected to be announced, as its iMac and some Macbooks haven’t gotten an update this year.

The tagline on the invite is “scary fast,” per CNBC, which argues that this suggests chip news. The company is expected to eventually unveil faster M3 chips to bolster Mac sales, which fell 7% on an annual basis in the June quarter.

The news comes as Apple deals with declining device sales on other fronts. Last week saw reports that CEO Tim Cook had made a surprise vist to China, an Apple manufacturing hub that also serves as one of the company’s biggest markets, accounting for about 20% of the its yearly revenue.

“Despite the popularity of Apple devices, particularly iPhones, in China, the company is facing challenges such as increased competition from domestic rivals, a sluggish consumer economy and Chinese officials’ growing suspicion of American tech companies,” PYMNTS wrote.

Cook’s visit apparently included time with Chinese Commerce Minister Wang Wentao, who assured him that the country would continue to expand market access for foreign companies and create a market-oriented business environment.

Recent reports show that consumers in China have been less enthusiastic about the new iPhone 15 than the iPhone 14 amid lukewarm consumption and competition from companies like Huawei.

The launch of the iPhone followed the debut of a new Huawei phone, and happened amid reports that the Chinese government was imposing a ban on iPhone use by government agencies and state-run businesses.

Although it’s unclear how wide-ranging the iPhone ban would be, China’s state-owned companies include PetroChina, an oil company with millions of employees.

Meanwhile, PYMNTS noted last month that while Apple’s device rollouts continue to be closely watched, those devices act as an on-ramp to the services ecosystem.

“Services, of course, has been the revenue driver that has been outpacing the earnings from the screens and watches that adorn our palms and wrists,” that report said.

Apple’s most recent quarterly earnings showed revenues from hardware falling 4.7%, while services-related sales increased by 8.2%.