New Products Hint at the Next Move from Apple Inc. (AAPL)

Apple Inc. (ticker: AAPL) investors and analysts are looking forward to the highly-anticipated unveiling of iPhone 8 in September. However, shareholders were treated to a handful of new product launches this week when the company unveiled a new 9.7-inch iPad, a new special edition red iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, a new batch of Apple Watch bands and a new iPhone and iPad app called Clips.

Apple said the $329 price tag for the new 32 GB iPad base model is its “most affordable price ever.” In addition to the appealing price, the new iPads also have a 3.1 million pixel retina display and twice the storage capacity of previous base models.

According to PCMag, the new iPad has the same screen size and resolution as the 9.7-inch iPad Pro, which starts at $599. The new iPad is also $70 cheaper than the 7.9-inch iPad Mini 4.

Apple’s under-the-radar iPad launch may be the company’s attempt to keep market expectations low after iPad sales have slumped in recent years. Shipments of its iPad declined 19 percent from last year in the critical holiday quarter, and the device now accounts for only about 8 percent of Apple’s total revenue.

Loup Ventures analyst Gene Munster says that the Clips app may be the most important product Apple unveiled this week. “From an announcements standpoint, this Clips product – where they’re starting to get into filters and auto-transcripting – I think that’s more of an indication of where Apple is going long term,” Munster says.

“If you really dig into this Clips, it’s more about them working with filters and augmented reality.”

Apple Watch sales have largely been a disappointment for Apple shareholders, so it’s unlikely the new bands will move the needle for Apple investors.

Nomura also says the special edition iPhone will not have much of an impact. The firm expects “the majority of customers seeking to upgrade their iPhones to wait out this mid-cycle refresh.”

Expectations for the new iPad seem particularly low, which is likely right where Apple wants them. Apple decided to forgo a special product launch event for the new batch of products, instead opting for a simple, low-key product announcement.

Back in January, Munster said…

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