Apple has seen a slump in iPad sales along with the shrinking of the global tablet market in 2016, and might be ready to introduce a new 10.5-inch tablet in addition to its 7.9-inch iPad mini, 12.9-inch iPad Pro and the 9.7-inch iPad according to a report.
Speaking to Digitimes, a Taiwan-based supply chain maker said that Apple finds the 10-inch screen as a popular size for the education sector and enterprises in the US, and might be aiming to address it with the new model. The source also added that the 9.7-inch iPad might be too small for the segment, with the 12.9-inch iPad Pro being seen as too expensive a purchase – necessitating for the new iPad size.
It is believed that the 10.5-inch version of the iPad will be shipping with Apple’s A10X CPU, which also powers the iPad Pro. Shipments of the new iPad version will be reaching two million units in Q1 2017, with 5-6 million total units being shipped in a years period, the source said, according to the Digitimes report.
Apple is also expected to launch a lower-priced version of the 9.7-inch iPad that will help the company compete with more reasonably priced Android tablets.
An earlier report by MacRumours quoting an Asia supply chain source said that Apple will be launching a 10.9-inch version in 2017 with a bezel-less design. According to the report, the 10.9-inch iPad with its bezel-less design will have the same footprint as the current 9.7-inch model, and might not feature the home button on the front of the tablet.
Japanese blog Macotakara has said that the iPad Pro 2017 will have a 12MP camera with a dual-tone flash along with a P3 display resolution. The new iPad Pro series will come equipped with quad-microphones, and will still be shipping with the 3.5mm headphone jack.
A Barclays report says that a new 9.7-inch iPad Pro might also be on the cards as a low-cost version. Ming-Chi Kuo, an analyst with KGI Securities expects big changes (like an OLED display) to only feature in the iPad series in 2018.