Monday November 11, 2013 4:18 pm PST by Juli Clover
Apple will launch its long awaited Retina iPad mini on November 12, according to multiple sources citing a posting by Apple on the company's GSX site for service providers. Apple plans to launch the tablet in the United States, Australia, China (Wi-Fi only), Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, and Singapore.
While a release time beyond 'November 12' was unavailable, Apple has previously launched its products via press release at around 5:30 AM. It is possible that the company will notify consumers of the mini's availability with a press release before initiating sales in-store and online. It is, however, already November 12 in a number of countries around the world, including New Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong, China, Singapore, and Japan.
While the quiet release of an iPad is unusual for the company, it could be due to reports of severe supply constraints of the Retina iPad mini. According to reports, display problems have caused serious production issues, and it is unlikely Apple will have enough supply of the tablet to meet demand.
Apple's Retina iPad mini has the same general design of the original mini, though it is slightly heavier and thicker. The tablet includes a Retina display with a 2048 x 1536 resolution, along with an A7 processor and the M7 coprocessor originally introduced in the iPhone 5s.
The Retina iPad mini will retail for $399 for the entry-level 16 GB Wi-Fi model with an extra $100 for each capacity increment and $130 for cellular connectivity.
Update: All of Apple's online stores around the world have gone offline. It is unclear, however, if the downtime is related to preparations for a Retina iPad mini launch or simply scheduled maintenance that commonly occurs at this time of day.
Friday November 8, 2013 5:33 am PST by Richard Padilla
Last week, a report from Japanese business newspaper Nikkei shed light on the production issues surrounding the forthcoming Retina iPad mini, stating that Apple is now turning to rival Samsung as suppliers Sharp and LG Display have failed to produce an ample supply of displays for the new tablet. Now, a report from Korean website ETNews (via Unwired View) has elaborated on the matter, with Sharp's IGZO panels for the Retina iPad mini said to be suffering from screen burn-in issues.
While the burn-in issue is reportedly invisible to users, the panels do not meet Apple's specifications and thus the high rejection rate has resulted in low panel yields for the tablet. As noted in a report earlier this week analyzing the new iPad Air's use of IGZO technology, Sharp has experienced difficulties ramping up production of its IGZO panels in the past, with it taking until now for Apple to bring the technology to its products.
The burn-in problem was caused by the drastic reduction of the pixel size. The resolution of the 7.9-inch iPad mini with Retina display is 2048×1536, about four times clearer than the existing 1024×768 products. LG Display used the amorphous silicon (a-Si) for the substrate, whereas Sharp used IGZO. The pixel of the smartphone display is smaller than that of the iPad mini Retina panel, but as the Low Temperature Polycrystalline Silicon (LTPS) technology is used, it can be produced stably. The pixel of the iPad mini Retina is the smallest among those products using a-Si. Sharp failed to solve the chronic problem of IGZO, i.e. uniformity, and its yield went down.
The report also elaborates on how Apple may be negotiating with Samsung to produce displays for the device starting next year, turning back to its rival in part due to Samsung's experience solving a similar problem with third-generation iPad's move to a Retina display.
Apple is negotiating with Samsung Display for the supply of displays starting next year. Apple discussed cooperation with Samsung Display when it was planning on the iPad mini Retina. AUO, which was the iPad mini display supplier, was excluded from the retina version because of its yield problem. Apple was planning to receive 15 million panels from LG Display, Sharp and Samsung Display at the end of this year. However, as the negotiation with Samsung Display fell through, only LG Display and Sharp made it to the final list of primary suppliers.
If the issue of screen burn-in persists, the report also states that Apple may move to LTPS technology such as that seen in the Kindle Fire HDX, as it is less prone to the problem. However, while LTPS is commonly used on displays for smaller devices such as the iPhone, Apple is unlikely to mass produce the displays for larger screens in part due to scalability issues that simply won't support the tens of millions of tablets that the company is producing each year.
Apple CEO Tim Cook stated last week during the company's fourth quarter earnings call that it was "unclear whether we will have enough for the quarter or not," as the company has only promised that the tablet will arrive by the the end of November. As noted by Apple during the introduction of the second-generation iPad mini, a Retina display has been one of the most requested features for the smaller iPad since its release last year.
Update: MacRumors spoke with Ray Soneira of DisplayMate Technologies, who noted that LG is almost certainly not using a-Si for its Retina iPad mini display panels due to significant power issues with trying to drive a display of that pixel density using the technology. The company has also been shipping its own IGZO display panels for some time now, and Soneira pointed out that "it would be very inefficient to engineer the iPad mini to ship using two significantly different display technologies."
Soneira also clarified that "burn-in" is the incorrect term for what would be happening with these LCDs. It would be a short-term image retention issue perhaps similar to what some early Retina MacBook Pro users experienced, although it appears in this case that the effect is invisible to users.
Wednesday November 6, 2013 5:15 am PST by Richard Padilla
Apple is set to add new manufacturing partners in Asia to handle production of its current line of iOS devices, reports The Wall Street Journal.
The company will contract with Wistron to produce the cheaper iPhone 5c and Compal Communications to assemble the iPad mini, though the report does not say whether the latter will assemble the iPad mini or Retina iPad mini. Apple is reportedly expanding its supplier list as its primary supplier, Foxconn, is focused on producing the iPhone 5s.
Furthermore, Apple is reportedly said to be unhappy with the labor issues that have surrounded Foxconn over the past few years, along with the repair costs said to have come with the high return rate of defective iPhones:
Hon Hai, also known as Foxconn, has also been under scrutiny for its labor practices, creating a headache for Apple, they said. According to J.P. Morgan analyst Alvin Kwock, the high return rate of defective iPhone 5 smartphones also led to tensions between Apple and Hon Hai over which company would be responsible for repair-work costs.
Last month, Apple notified Pegatron and Foxconn that it would be reducing orders of the iPhone 5c, with another report stating that iPhone 5s production was to be boosted by 75 percent to meet demand. The iPhone 5s remains in very short supply, with carriers such as Verizon and T-Mobile indicating that they could have sold even more units of the device had supplies been readily available. The iPhone 5c, in contrast, has seen good supplies throughout Apple's distribution channels, allowing the company to meet demand.
"Apple has raised this quarter's iPhone 5S orders from Hon Hai as demand has been stronger than expected. But it takes time to boost production capacity and Apple can't find other assemblers to increase production to meet demand immediately," said the Hon Hai executive.
Meanwhile, Apple's upcoming iPad mini with Retina display is said to be in very short supply, with Apple CEO Tim Cook stating last week during the company's fourth quarter earnings call that it was "unclear whether we will have enough for the quarter or not" and a report last week stating that the company is turning to Samsung as low display yields for the Retina iPad mini continue. Currently, it is not known when specifically the second-generation iPad mini will be released, as Apple has only stated that the tablet will be out by the end of November.
Thursday October 31, 2013 11:59 pm PDT by Richard Padilla
A new report from Japanese business newspaper Nikkei [Google Translation] (via CNET) has shed light on the production issues surrounding the forthcoming Retina iPad Mini, with Apple now turning to rival Samsung as suppliers Sharp and LG Display have failed to produce an adequate supply of displays for the new tablet.
Apple CEO Tim Cook stated earlier this week during the company's fourth quarter earnings call that that it was “unclear whether we will have enough for the quarter or not,” with a report on Wednesday stating that Sharp’s low yield of displays was reportedly tied to the shortage.
It was notably reported back in August that Samsung had become the primary iPad display supplier, as the Korean company along with LG and Japan Display was said to be supplying 7.9-inch panels for the next-generation iPad mini. The Wall Street Journal also commented in July that the Retina iPad mini would use screens from Samsung, LG, and Sharp.
Apple has been reported to be seeking to reduce its reliance on Samsung as a component supplier due to continuing tensions between the two companies as they have increasingly become top competitors in the mobile device market. However, it has been reported for several months now that Apple would be returning to Samsung as a display supplier due to its technological advantages and production capacity.
While supplies of the Retina iPad mini will be constrained, supplies of the iPad Air are expected to be more plentiful, with the company will offer same day in-store pickup for orders of the new full-sized tablet. As noted by Apple during the introduction of the second-generation iPad mini, a Retina display has been one of the most requested features for the smaller iPad since its release last year.
Thursday October 31, 2013 12:39 am PDT by Richard Padilla
UK Carrier Three has announced that it will be the first British carrier to offer cellular models of the iPad Air on November 1 and the iPad mini with Retina Display upon its release, reports Engadget.
The carrier will offer an entry-level 1GB data plan starting at £7.50 per month on contract, in addition to the £499 up-front cost for the tablet itself. For £25 a month, the carrier is offering a 15GB data plan, which will also be offered on contract. Initially, celluar models of the iPad Air purchased on the carrier will be restricted to 3G data, as Three will begin rolling out its faster 4G LTE networks in December, with service first launching in London, Birmingham, Manchester, and Reading.
Three also announced that cellular versions of the Retina iPad mini will be avaliable through its services with the same data plans offered alongside iPad Air, however it still remains unclear as to when specific release of the second-generation iPad mini will be due to tight supplies.
The iPad Air will be available beginning on Friday, November 1, with initial online orders beginning at 12:01 AM Pacific Time in the United States and at varying times in other countries. Apple retail locations will open at 8 AM local time on Friday to begin in-store sales.
Wednesday October 30, 2013 7:02 pm PDT by Juli Clover
A product listing for the Retina iPad mini with a release date of November 21 has appeared on Target.com, suggesting Apple's new tablet could make its debut on the Thursday before Thanksgiving. Thus far, Apple has not provided a prospective release date for its iPad mini with Retina Display, offering up only broad November launch plans.
While the November 21 launch date listed on the Target website could be a simple guess by the company, it is a logical release day for the tablet because it falls before Thanksgiving and more importantly, before Black Friday, which is a major shopping holiday in the United States.
A late November launch also gives Apple an opportunity to focus its attention on the iPad Air for the majority of the month. It is unclear, however, why Apple would choose to launch the Retina mini on a Thursday, as product releases typically fall on a Friday.
Apple's Retina iPad mini, which includes an A7 processor, is said to be in very short supply. According to a recent report, stock of the Retina iPad mini will be "ridiculously tight" until early 2014.
Though supplies of the Retina mini will be low, Apple is said to have a large quantity of iPad Airs available for purchase, which will likely alleviate some of the demand for the smaller tablet. Apple's iPad Air will go on sale this Friday, with online orders beginning at 12:01 AM in the United States and at varying times in other countries.
Wednesday October 30, 2013 3:06 am PDT by Richard Padilla
A day after Apple CEO Tim Cook stated that it is unclear as to whether Apple will have enough supply of the Retina iPad mini to meet market demand, Digitimes is reporting that Japanese manufacturer Sharp is tied to the shortage, citing low yield rates of displays from the company.
Multiple sources have suggested that the Retina iPad mini will be in limited supply throughout 2013, which has been all but confirmed by Apple's nebulous November release date. According to a report from last week, following its November debut, Retina iPad mini supplies could be "ridiculously tight" until 2014.
However, while supplies of the Retina iPad mini will be constrained, supplies of the iPad Air are expected to be more plentiful, as the company will offer same day in-store pickup for orders of the new full-sized tablet. As noted by Apple during the introduction of the second-generation iPad mini, a Retina display has been one of the most requested features for the smaller iPad since its release last year.
Monday October 28, 2013 3:03 pm PDT by Juli Clover
During today's fourth quarter earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook commented on the Retina iPad mini, noting that it is unclear whether Apple will have enough supplies to meet demand for the tablet.
According to Cook, while Apple is aware of how many Retina iPad minis the company can produce, it is unclear how much demand will exist for the tablet. As noted by Apple during the Retina mini's second-generation introduction, a Retina display has been one of the most requested features for the tablet.
Multiple sources have suggested that the Retina iPad mini will be in short supply throughout 2013, which has been all but confirmed by Apple's nebulous November release date. According to a report from last week, following its November debut, Retina iPad mini supplies could be "ridiculously tight" until 2014. Cook did not offer any further information on a prospective launch date.
While supplies of the Retina iPad mini will be constrained, supplies of the iPad Air are expected to be more plentiful. When the iPad Air goes on sale on November 1, the company is expected to offer same day in-store pickup for orders. On account of high quantities of the iPad Air, Cook was positive about overall iPad sales during the quarter, stating "I think it's going to be an iPad Christmas."
Cook also confirmed that Apple has had a significant backlog on iPhone 5s supplies, but is working to build up stock each week. He remains confident that Apple will be able to continue to build up its iPhone 5s supplies as it launches in additional countries around the world in the coming weeks. Currently, iPhone 5s shipping times in the United States and multiple other countries remain at 2 to 3 weeks.
Thursday October 24, 2013 7:43 pm PDT by Husain Sumra
The new Space Gray version of the non-Retina Display iPad mini has begun appearing in Apple retail stores, according to 9to5Mac. The color change was announced alongside the the debut of the iPad mini with Retina Display at Apple's media event on Tuesday.
Although the new color is available in select Apple Stores, the tablet is reportedly not yet available in all of the retail stores. The model, which only comes with 16GB, has been available in Apple's website since Tuesday, but it was previously unknown when it would appear in its retail locations.
The new Space Gray color replaces the older iPad mini's slate black color and starts at $299 for the Wi-Fi version and $429 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular variation.
Thursday October 24, 2013 7:55 am PDT by Eric Slivka
Following concerns expressed during the lead-up to this week's Apple media event that the company would be unable to launch the Retina iPad mini in any significant volume before the end of the year, supply chain analysts continue to expect very low supplies of the device when it launches next month.
Shortly after Apple announced the new Retina iPad mini, IHS iSuppli analyst Rhoda Alexander noted that supplies will indeed be "severely constrained", according to CNET.
"The supply for that product is severely constrained," said Rhoda Alexander, director of Tablet and Monitor Research at IHS iSuppli.
"We don't expect to see meaningful volume until first quarter [of 2014]."
Alexander expanded a bit more in comments shared by The Telegraph yesterday, calling the supplies "ridiculously tight" at one-third the levels seen for last year's launch of the original iPad mini.
Rhoda Alexander, director of tablet research at IHS electronis and media, said: "The supply of the Retina Mini is going to be ridiculously tight in the fourth quarter.
"Apple’s 2013 iPad shipment growth is shaping up to be comparatively modest and the shift in launch cycles has played a major role in the slowdown."
Production of the Retina display panels for the new iPad mini is said to be the bottleneck for Apple, with Apple's suppliers needing to optimize processes for building displays with the same number of pixels as the full-size iPad but at the higher pixel density of the iPhone and iPod touch.
Alexander is certainly not the only analyst to be predicting tight supplies of the new iPad mini, with KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo making similar claims. Kuo's modeling has Apple shipping only a little over 2.2 million Retina iPad mini units during the fourth quarter due to those low supplies and a mid-quarter launch, compared to nearly 6.6 million units of the non-Retina iPad mini.
Apple's own announcements have also suggested low availability of the Retina iPad mini, with the company introducing the device at Tuesday's event but declining to announce an exact launch date in specifying only "November". And with the iPad Air launching on November 1, it seems clear that Apple is struggling to produce the new Retina iPad mini in quantities sufficient enough to allow it to launch as the holiday shopping season kicks off at the end of November.
Tuesday October 22, 2013 2:00 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Following Apple’s iPad-centric event where the company unveiled its latest iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina display, event attendees have been able to go hands-on with the new devices, which will be available in November. Below are some first impressions of Apple’s newest tablets, both of which feature some radical improvements.
According to Engadget, the iPad Air is much slimmer and lighter, but it doesn’t feel cheap. While the size differences aren’t immediately apparent, the lighter weight is noticeable and the A7 processor is a major improvement.
Naturally, iOS 7 looks great on that Retina display – but you knew that already right? What’s really notable here, however, is just how zippy things are, thanks to the inclusion of an A7 chip, the same one introduced on the iPhone 5s. You really notice that speed when launching apps like iMovie, which boots up in an an instant. With a chip like this, you should be getting around the new free version of iLife pretty swiftly.
The Verge calls the iPad Air "really beautiful," with "cleaner bezels" and a thinner profile. It’s notably faster with the A7 processor, and fits better in a single hand.
Long story short: it looks and feels like a larger (but not that much larger) iPad mini, and that’s mostly a really good thing. It’s really beautiful, with cleaner bezels, a much thinner profile, and sharper, boxier edges.
Along with the new A7 processor and a handful of under-the-hood improvements, this is just about the upgrade we expected, but more than ever the iPad Air feels like you’re just holding a big screen full of the internet. That’s probably a good thing.
SlashGear notes that there’s a definite "wow-factor" when picking up the iPad Air.
The slimmed down bezels on the sides make a considerable difference to how it feels in your hand, leaving the tablet as a whole feeling somewhere in-between the 4:3 aspect of its display and the 16:9 of most rival Android slates. There’s still enough room to grip it, however, without overlapping the display too considerably.
It’s the little details that you notice after a while, however. The chamfering to the casing where it meets the toughened glass of the fascia, for instance, or the slimline side controls and lock-switch. Unfortunately there’s no Touch ID embedded into the home button, but we can see ourselves holding the iPad Air for longer periods since the 1-pound weight is almost a third reduction on the old model.
iPad mini with Retina Display
Apple’s newest iPad mini is similar to the first iPad mini, though it is slightly thicker and heavier. Engadget didn’t notice any major changes to the feel, but did note that the processor seems faster than the original.
There isn’t much on the outside that we haven’t seen before – in fact, it still sports the same home button, indicating that it doesn’t feature Touch ID – but there is one glaring exception: the Retina display. When compared to the original iPad mini that came out last year, this is a rather significant bump in pixel density, and we came away much more impressed with the mini as a result.
According to CNET, the iPad mini feels exactly like the first generation version and looks even sharper than the full-sized iPad Air.
However, while it feels great, it’s all about that screen. And given the Mini’s smaller 7.9-inch size, it looks even sharper than the full-size iPad Air. But to take advantage of the new pixel-dense screen, you will be paying up over last year’s Mini. It’s gorgeous, though, so I’d imagine the new premium will definitely be worth it to some people.
The Verge notes that the Retina mini is noticeably faster and smoother, with sharper, more readable text.
The same 7.9-inch display now features four times the pixels, a full 2048 x 1536 resolution, which makes text sharp and readable. Just as importantly, it makes iOS 7 look much better than it does on the original iPad mini, which often feels a little out of place on lower resolutions. iOS 7 also benefits from the iPad mini’s new 64-bit A7 processor, making scrolling and everything else notably faster and smoother.
TechCrunch calls the Retina mini’s screen "excellent," noting that it will be a dramatic change for users who are coming from a first generation device.
The eye-boggling 2048 x 1536 screen looks excellent in person, and for anyone coming from a generation one device it’s going to be a dramatic change. The iPad mini itself is very slightly thicker and heavier than its predecessor to accommodate the Retina Display with the same battery life, adding 0.01 inches and 0.05 pounds to the specs of the original, but that makes minimal difference to the actual feel of the product in the hand.
Apple’s iPad Air will be available beginning on November 1, while the Retina mini will come later in the month. Both tablets feature a 64-bit A7 processor, Retina screens, and ultra-thin designs.
Tuesday October 22, 2013 12:07 pm PDT by Husain Sumra
With the introduction of new iPad models today, T-Mobile USA is for the first time offering official support for cellular versions of the device. In a twist, T-Mobile is offering an entry-level data package with 200 MB free of charge. Higher-limit packages are available with 2.5 GB for $30 per month or 4.5 GB for $50 per month.
The announcement of T-Mobile iPad Air and iPad mini with Retina Display models comes just days after CEO John Legere hint at the prospect of the carrier adding iPads to its lineup.
Previously, T-Mobile customers had to put SIM cards from the carrier into cellular iPads that were carrier-unlocked. Now, T-Mobile customers will have the same low barriers of entry to the cellular iPads as Verizon, AT&T and Sprint customers.
The iPad Air will be available on November 1, while the iPad mini with Retina Display will be available later in November.
Tuesday October 22, 2013 11:56 am PDT by Husain Sumra
As part of its iPad mini update today adding a Retina display to its smaller iPad line, Apple also introduced new 128 GB variations for the first time.
The new models, which offer double the storage capacity of the previous high-end iPad mini, will come with a $100 premium available in all combinations of space gray and silver and Wi-Fi/Wi-Fi + Cellular models.
The move comes almost eight months after Apple announced that the full-sized iPad would be receiving a 128GB variation.
The iPad mini with Retina Display is currently unavailable, but will arrive in November.
Tuesday October 22, 2013 11:04 am PDT by Juli Clover
As part of its iPad lineup update announced today, Apple introduced the second-generation iPad mini, which as expected is equipped with a 7.9-inch Retina display with a resolution of 2048x1536, matching the resolution of the full-sized Retina iPad. The Retina iPad mini is slightly thicker than the original iPad mini, measuring in at 7.5 mm thick and 0.73 pounds (0.75 pounds for cellular-capable models) compared to 7.2 millimeters and 0.68 pounds for the original generation. The new iPad mini will launch on an unspecified date in November and will be available in both white/silver and black/space gray options.
Internally, the Retina iPad mini includes a 64-bit A7 processor, M7 motion co-processor, and an upgraded 5-megapixel rear iSight camera with a backside illumination sensor and 1080p HD video capability. Meanwhile, the front of the device now features a new FaceTime HD camera with larger pixels that is also accompanied by dual microphones. The new iPad mini also now features multiple-input and multiple-output (MIMO) technology that offers up to 2x faster Wi-Fi, with both 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi and LTE cellular models that available with up to 10 hours of battery life.
Apple has raised the price of the iPad with the inclusion of a Retina screen, and will offer it in 16, 32, 64, and new 128 GB models, beginning at $399 in the United States.
In addition to offering the Retina iPad mini, Apple will continue to sell the existing iPad mini at a lower price, offering only the low-end 16 GB model at $299 for Wi-Fi and $429 for Wi-Fi + Cellular. The first-generation black models will also see a shift from the previous slate shell to Apple's new space gray color.
The new iPad mini will be available next month, while the first-generation models at $299/$429 are available immediately.
Tuesday October 22, 2013 8:47 am PDT by Jordan Golson
Apple's highly anticipated October media event is being held today at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco. The event begins at 10:00 AM Pacific Time / 1:00 PM Eastern Time, and Apple is expected to unveil a number of new products including updated iPads, new Retina MacBook Pros, and new iLife and iWork offerings.
The company should also be providing final looks at the redesigned Mac Pro and OS X Mavericks before their public launches in the coming weeks. Our expectations for these updates are summarized in the Roundups section of our site.
Apple will be providing a live video stream on its website for Mac and iOS users and via Apple TV.
In addition, we will be updating this article with summary coverage and issuing Twitter updates through our @MacRumorsLive account as the event unfolds. Separate news stories regarding the event announcements will go out through our @MacRumors account.
Apple's online stores around the world are currently down in advance of the event.
Sunday October 20, 2013 8:23 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Apple will introduce a high resolution Retina iPad mini and a thinner, lighter version of the standard 9.7-inch iPad during its Tuesday event, reports The Wall Street Journal, confirming months of product leaks and rumors.
Apple is now readying a revamped iPad Mini with a high-resolution "retina" display. It’s also working on a thinner, lighter version of its standard 9.7-inch iPad, using a thin film instead of the glass found in existing models, based on information from the company’s parts suppliers.
While a fifth-generation iPad with thinner side bezels and an overall smaller size has been widely expected, the release of the Retina iPad mini has been less certain, given multiple reports in the last few weeks suggesting serious supply chain issues.
Rendering of the fifth-generation iPad between iPad mini and fourth-generation iPad
It was unclear whether the Retina iPad mini would be ready for Tuesday’s announcements, but in addition to The Wall Street Journal, two reliable sources, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo and AllThingsD, have also indicated that the Retina iPad mini will make its debut on October 22.
Alongside a Retina screen, the iPad mini is expected to include an A7 processor, while the full-sized iPad will offer an A7X processor. Both iPads will include upgraded cameras, and could also offer Apple’s new M7 motion tracking chip. AllThingsD has also indicated that Haswell MacBook Pros will be unveiled during the event.
Finally, I’m told we’re likely to see a slate of new MacBook Pros upgraded with Intel’s latest Haswell processors. Apple brought Haswell to its MacBook Airs earlier this year, giving them a nice boost in battery life and graphics. It has been expected to do the same for its professional laptops ever since. Tuesday should see the announcement of that move.
Aside from the iPads and the Haswell MacBook Pros, Apple is expected to announce a number of other hardware and software products, including Mavericks, revamped versions of iLife and iWork for both Mac and iOS, the redesigned Mac Pro, and possibly a new display to go with it. A minor update to the Apple TV may also be included, and it’s possible that the Mac mini could be updated as well.
Saturday October 19, 2013 11:07 pm PDT by Eric Slivka
High-profile KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has released a new research report outlining some of his expectations for Apple October 22 media event, focusing on the company's iPad and Retina MacBook Pro lineups.
In line with our previously summarized expectations, Kuo believes that Apple will be introducing a thinner and lighter fifth-generation iPad, as well as a new iPad mini with Retina display. The latter has been the subject of considerable debate, with some sources believing that Apple is not yet ready to bring Retina displays to the iPad mini, but while Kuo believes that Apple will indeed be able to introduce a Retina iPad mini, supplies will be highly constrained at first.
Kuo also weighs in on several other rumored additions for the iPad and iPad mini, claiming that "probably" neither a Touch ID fingerprint sensor nor a gold color option will be available in either line. He believes that production of components related to those features are still being prioritized for the iPhone 5s, which remains in very tight supply, and thus will not yet be able to make their way into the iPad lineup.
As for other upgrades, Kuo believes that the fifth-generation iPad will adopt a new A7X chip while the new iPad mini will be equipped with a slightly less powerful A7 chip like the one found in the iPhone 5s. Kuo also reiterates his earlier claim that the rear camera on Apple's new iPads will be upgraded to 8 megapixels. Finally, Kuo believes that both the fifth-generation iPad and the second-generation iPad mini will include Apple's new "M7" chip that debuted in the iPhone 5s, offering significant improvements for motion tracking.
Alongside the iPad updates, Kuo also believes that Apple will be introducing its Retina MacBook Pro on Tuesday, moving to Intel's latest Haswell chips for improved performance and battery life while also upgrading the FaceTime camera to 1080p quality, a claim he has made in the past.
Overall, Kuo unsurprisingly believes that the new fifth-generation iPad will drive a significant increase in sales for Apple's full-size iPad, while the new iPad mini will result in a more modest bump due to the very tight initial supplies. He also predicts a very strong bump for the Retina MacBook Pro, as pent-up demand for new Haswell models should lead to strong sales heading into the holidays.
Unaddressed is Apple's Mac Pro, which is expected to be given its full introduction on Tuesday in advance of a launch before the end of the year, but Kuo has generally not covered Apple's Mac Pro line in his report.
Kuo has been fairly accurate with his claims over the past several years, earning him significant attention from the rumor community. He has, however, had some misses, as seen with his prediction that the Retina MacBook Pro would be updated at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference back in June. That update had been widely expected, but did not come to pass and customers are still waiting for the new models to appear over four months later.
Friday October 18, 2013 9:39 am PDT by Eric Slivka
With just four days to go until Apple's October 22 media event in San Francisco, expectations for what will be shown are in many cases continuing to firm up, while in other cases questions remain. Our regularly updated Roundups section continues to offer a good overview of what is expected for each product and highlights the significant number of Apple products due for updates. Among the expectations for next week:
- iPad: Expect a new iPad mini-inspired design that is thinner, narrower, and lighter. [Read More]
- iPad mini: Retina display expected, but there have been questions about production and whether Apple be able to ship the new device in significant quantities, if at all, before the holidays. [Read More]
- OS X Mavericks: Reportedly due for launch before the end of the month, we should see a final unveiling next week. Other software updates including new versions of Apple's iWork and iLife suites, including iWork for iCloud, are also expected. [Read More]
- Mac Pro: Announced by Apple as launching "this fall" following a sneak peek at WWDC in June, Apple's radically redesigned professional desktop should get a thorough introduction next Tuesday. Some have speculated that updated displays may arrive to complement the new Mac Pro, but there has been no specific evidence of a display refresh. [Read More]
- MacBook Pro: An update for Apple's Retina MacBook Pro line has been expected for several months, moving to Intel's new Haswell processors for improved battery life. While it seems that Apple would want to feature the MacBook Pro improvements at its event, the list of products to be covered is beginning to get rather long and so it is unclear if the updated notebooks will make an appearance at or alongside the event or at a separate time. [Read More]
- Mac mini: There have been no specific rumors about the Mac mini, but it too is due for an update to Haswell processors. [Read More]
- An Apple TV wildcard: There have been some rumblings over the past several months that Apple is planning some sort of TV-related announcement for late this year, but there has been no concrete evidence of any imminent introduction. While Apple has been said to be planning its own connected television set product, that product may not be ready and the effort could continue to progress incrementally with an updated set-top box.
Wednesday October 16, 2013 3:05 pm PDT by Jordan Golson
Back in August, T-Mobile CEO John Legere hinted in an interview that T-Mobile would soon be carrying a "whole array of Apple products", with the company expanding their offerings of devices from Apple.
What has two thumbs and is excited for October 22? #thisguy
The tweet may be the CEO's cryptic way of hinting that next-generation cellular iPads may soon be available from Apple and T-Mobile stores preloaded with T-Mobile SIM cards and optimized for the carrier's LTE bands.
Of course, T-Mobile customers have long been able to put SIM cards from the carrier into iPads as Apple's cellular-equipped tablets are not carrier-locked, but being able to purchase them with a T-Mobile SIM already installed will be an added convenience.
AT&T, Sprint and Verizon already offer cellular-equipped iPads at their retail stores and Apple's various retail outlets.
Tuesday October 15, 2013 4:27 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Earlier today Apple sent out invitations to its October 22 media event, which is expected to focus on the fifth-generation iPad and the iPad mini 2. The event will be held at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, but as it did with the iPhone launch, Apple plans to stream the proceedings to a separate London satellite event that international media members have been invited to attend (via 9to5Mac).
For the iPhone event, Apple sent out invitations to media in Berlin, Tokyo, and Beijing, hosting satellite launches in each country. Each event featured a video stream of the announcement in Cupertino, and it is likely the London event, which begins at 6PM local time at the Kings Place hall, will be run in a similar manner.
Along with the London stream, Apple is said to be setting up live streams for its employees to watch the event in Apple offices around the world, and the company will also offer a replay of the event on its website and iTunes after the event has concluded.
Apple did not provide a live stream of the September 10 iPhone event to employees, nor did the company provide an event stream for iOS devices and the Apple TV. In the past, however, Apple has streamed its events live to customers. For example, the 2012 iPad event was available via its website for Mac and iOS users, and there was a dedicated channel on the Apple TV. Apple also streamed its WWDC announcement to the Apple TV.
Apple has not yet announced plans to provide streaming coverage of the event to the general public for the upcoming October 22 event, but it is possible that live streaming will be available given the company's plan to provide feeds for employees.
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