How Tim Cook's "exciting product" coming this week could turn around slumping iPad sales

Apple Pencil over drawing of Apple Logo
(Image credit: Apple)

Apple CEO Tim Cook had big news on Thursday: An "exciting product announcement" is right around the corner. 

The hint comes just days before a virtual Apple event that's expected to center on the iPad and Apple Pencil and might even include a long-awaited upgrade to the iPad Pro. The timing couldn't be better — Apple's quarterly earnings report showed a slump in iPad sales. 

Could this event, and the mysterious new product expected to be announced at it, help iPad sales bounce back after a dip in early 2024? 

Here's a look at what Apple might have in store for Tuesday morning.

Tim Cook hints at new product ahead of May iPad event

Apple Event Let Loose

(Image credit: Laptop Mag / Apple)

On Thursday, Apple released its Q2 2024 earnings report, a press release, and an investor call. Tim Cook commented in the press release: "We’re also looking forward to an exciting product announcement next week and an incredible Worldwide Developers Conference next month." 

This hint about an imminent product announcement excites Apple fans, and we may already know what Cook could be referring to — or at least when

Apple has a virtual event slated for May 7, this coming Tuesday. The event, titled "Let Loose," is expected to spotlight the iPad and Apple Pencil. Last year was the first year Apple didn't launch an iPad since it launched the original back in 2010. So, Apple has been building up to this event for a while now. 

Tim Cook took to X last week to drum up excitement for it, posting a promo GIF with the caption, "Pencil us i" for May 7!" 

This post, along with Cook's comment in the earnings report press release, clearly points to the May 7 event as the date of the "exciting product announcement." It also significantly narrows down what this mysterious new product could be, considering the "Let Loose" event is all about the iPad and Apple Pencil. 

Could a new iPad or Apple Pencil turn around iPad sales? 

Apple Pencil drawing on iPad

(Image credit: Apple)

The timing of Tim Cook's hint likely wasn't a coincidence. Apple's Q2 2024 earnings report released on Thursday revealed a drop in iPad sales year-over-year for the second consecutive quarter. Apple's consolidated financial statement for Q2 2024 shows that the iPad product category generated $5.5 billion compared to $6.6 billion in Q2 2023. iPad revenue was also $1.5 billion lower year-over-year in Q1 2024.

This downward trend could be the result of the long wait since the last new iPads were released in 2022. If the May 7 event includes an "exciting product announcement," it could be just what Apple needs to help iPad sales bounce back.

Apple could potentially unveil a few long-overdue products on May 7. The first candidate is the highly anticipated OLED iPad Pro. A major display update could go a long way to revamp excitement around the iPad and encourage existing users to upgrade. Apple should also have an easier time convincing people to trade in their iPads since it's been a while since the last new model came out. 

Apple is also likely to unveil a redesigned high-end Apple Pencil on May 7. The Pencil is featured front and center in the event's advertising, and Tim Cook's post on X clearly referred to it. 

Apple analyst Mark Gurman reported this week that the new Apple Pencil is expected to feature haptic feedback and squeeze-activated controls. It will replace the second-generation Apple Pencil from 2018. 

One final new product we could see on May 7 is a Magic Keyboard refresh. The Magic Keyboard is Apple's premium magnetic keyboard accessory for the iPad. It hasn't had an update since 2021, so it would be no surprise if Apple revealed a redesigned version to accompany the new Apple Pencil and iPad Pro. 

Stevie Bonifield
Freelance Writer

Stevie Bonifield is a freelance tech journalist specializing in keyboards, peripherals, gaming gear, and mobile tech. Outside of writing, Stevie loves indie games, photography, and building way too many custom keyboards