Thinner ninth-gen iPad due this fall with a faster processor
You can add one more device to the avalanche of new products expected from Apple this fall. Along with a new iPad mini, MacBook Pro, Apple Watch, and, of course, the iPhone 13, Apple is also expected to give the entry-level iPad a minor refresh.
According to Mark Gurman of Bloomberg, the ninth-generation iPad will feature a design that’s similar to the current model, which arrived in 2020 with an A12 Bionic processor. Along with the usual processor bump (likely to the A14 Bionic), Gurman says the new iPad will feature a “thinner form factor” but likely retain the home button. The current iPad is 0.29 inches (7.5 mm) thick while the thinnest iPad ever made, the iPad Air 2, was 0.24 inches (6.1 mm) thick.
Last year’s tame redesign followed a bigger upgrade in 2019 that brought a larger 10.2-inch display (versus 9.7 inches) as well as Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard support. Gurman says the new iPad will be “geared toward students,” which has been Apple’s target audience with the entry-level iPad for the past few years.
The new iPad will reportedly keep the Lightning port, despite the iPad Pro and iPad Air moving to USB-C. The iPad mini is also rumored to adopt USB-C with its upcoming revision.
The new iPad is expected to be released this fall, but the timing isn’t certain. Apple has numerous products on deck to launch between September and November. The new iPad could arrive alongside the iPhone 13, M1X MacBook Pro, or at its own event. Apple is also expected to launch a redesigned iPad mini that looks like a smaller iPad Air, with a Touch ID-enabled power button and a Liquid Retina display.
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Michael Simon has been covering Apple since the iPod was the iWalk. His obsession with technology goes back to his first PC—the IBM Thinkpad with the lift-up keyboard for swapping out the drive. He’s still waiting for that to come back in style tbh.