Archive of iPad Mini Rumors

Apple held a second hardware-centric fall event this morning in New York City, where the company launched updated iPad Pro models, a refreshed version of the MacBook Air, and a new Mac mini.

Prior to the event, though, there were rumors suggesting we'd also see some other products that didn't end up making an appearance.

iMac


Rumors suggested Apple was working on updated iMac models with new processors, but it doesn't look like the iMac lineup is going to get a 2018 refresh at this point.


There wasn't a lot of detail on what to expect from a new iMac, but Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo did say Apple was working on a version with an upgraded processor and a "significant display performance upgrade."

With no new iMac making an appearance at today's event, we don't know when we'll see an updated version.

MacBook


Prior to today's event, there was a lot of confusion over a rumored lower-cost notebook, which turned out to be a MacBook Air. It wasn't clear if the device would be in the MacBook Air or the MacBook family for good reason - it was rumored to be a 13-inch machine with a MacBook Air style design, a lower price tag, and a Retina display.

Those options turned out to be true, and the new MacBook Air is slimmer with thinner bezels, a faster processor, built-in Touch ID, and a Retina display, the feature previously differentiating the MacBook Air from the 12-inch MacBook.


Now that this new $1,199 MacBook Air with 8th-Gen Intel processors, Touch ID, T2 chip, and a slimmer chassis exists, it's not entirely clear what Apple plans to do with the 12-inch MacBook lineup, which starts at just $100 more.

There were rumors the 12-inch MacBook lineup would also be updated at today's event, but it wasn't refreshed.

Is this the end of the MacBook? It's not clear what Apple has in store for its thinnest, lightest machine, nor when it might see an update. With faster 8th-Gen processors and a Retina display in the new MacBook Air, the only real distinguishing feature between the MacBook and the MacBook Air is the MacBook's smaller size.

iPad mini


Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said just ahead of Apple's event that a new iPad mini is in the works, but he wasn't sure if it would be included in the October 30th product unveilings. As it turns out, it wasn't, and if a new iPad mini is in development, there's no word on when we'll see it launch.


AirPower and AirPods


There was some speculation that Apple could still debut the AirPower charging mat and compatible AirPods at its October event, but that didn't happen.


We have no idea when we might expect to see the AirPower launch, if it is indeed still in the works, nor when Apple will launch updated AirPods. At this point, it looks like we may not see these products until sometime in 2019.

Mac Pro


We were hoping to get a little peek at Apple's work on its promised high-end high-throughput modular Mac Pro that Apple is developing for release in 2019, but it looks like we're going to have a longer wait to get our first glimpse at Apple's pro-focused machine.

Missing iPhone XR Cases and iPad Smart Covers


It's still not clear why Apple hasn't introduced cases for the iPhone XR, especially after mentioning special clear cases for the device in the iPhone XR press release in some countries, but following today's event, there's still no sign of Apple-designed iPhone XR cases.

Apple also did not introduce new Smart Covers for its updated 11 and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models, but there are new Smart Folio options and the new Smart Keyboard Folio.
While Apple introduced iPhones back in September, there are still a number of products that the company is planning to refresh before the end of the year, necessitating a second fall 2018 event, set to be held on Tuesday, October 30 in New York City.

Apple's October event will focus on the iPad and the Mac, and below, we've rounded up everything we expect to see along with a few other products that might possibly make an appearance at the keynote.

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iPad Pro


Apple is working on updated iPad Pro models that adopt an iPhone XS-style design with slimmer bezels and no Home button, with the iPads instead set to gain a TrueDepth camera system that will replace Touch ID with Face ID for biometric authentication purposes. The design of the iPad Pro has been confirmed by Apple in several leaked icons discovered in iOS 12.


Though the iPhone XS uses a notch for the TrueDepth camera, the upcoming iPad Pro models are expected to feature slim top, bottom, and side bezels all around the display. Apple is not planning to use an OLED display for the new iPads due to cost and production issues.

2018 iPad Pro mockup via iDropNews

Recent CAD drawings sourced from a case maker along with additional leaks have given us some insight into the dimensions of the new iPad Pro models. The smaller iPad Pro is expected to be 7 inches wide (178.52mm) and 9.7 inches tall (247.64mm), while the larger model will be 8.5 inches wide (215mm) and 11 inches tall (280.66mm).

The smaller of the two iPad Pro models may be as thin as 5.86mm, and it's not clear how thick the larger iPad Pro model will be. It could be as thin, or somewhat thicker like the current 12.9-inch iPad Pro. Bezels for both iPad Pro models could measure in at around 6mm at the top, bottom, and sides.


Based on multiple leaks, Apple is apparently relocating the magnetic Smart Connector on the new iPad Pro models from the side to the bottom near the Lightning port, which could perhaps require a new vertically oriented Smart Keyboard. It's not clear why Apple is making this change, and it's not known if Apple is indeed releasing a new Smart Keyboard that connects differently.

Originally, it was thought that Apple was relocating the connector because Face ID would be limited to portrait orientation since that's the way it works on the iPhone, but code in iOS 12.1 suggests that after being set up vertically, Face ID will work on the iPad in both portrait and landscape modes.

Design wise, the new iPad Pro models are said to feature a "diamond cut" at both the front and the back, which suggests the tablets could have a design similar to the iPhone SE with beveled edges. Antenna lines on the device may also be located at the top and bottom, similar to the iPhone 7, rather than in a block at the top.

Renderings of 12.9-inch iPad Pro based on alleged CAD drawings

There are other major changes in store for the iPad Pro. Apple is said to be planning to eliminate the headphone jack from the iPad lineup like it did in the iPhone starting with the iPhone 7, and it's rumored to use a USB-C port instead of a Lightning port.

A USB-C port would allow for faster charging and new functionality not possible via Lightning such as the ability to drive a 4K monitor.

Inside, the new iPad Pro models are said to be equipped with an A12X Bionic processor that's even faster than the A12 chip in the new iPhone lineup.

Renderings of 12.9-inch iPad Pro based on alleged CAD drawings

For more on the iPad Pro, make sure to check out our iPad Pro roundup.

Apple Pencil 2


Alongside new iPad Pro models, Apple is said to be planning to introduce a second-generation Apple Pencil with a new design.


Little detail is known about the new Apple Pencil, but it could feature an AirPods-like pairing experience with the ability to switch the Apple Pencil between devices without the need to plug it into a Lightning port.

It will attach magnetically to the side of the new iPad Pro models, and it is said to feature a new charging method, though there are no details on what that charging method might be. It's possible the accessory will charge wirelessly when docked to the iPad Pro, with Apple eliminating the Lightning port.


Rumors have also suggested new Apple Pencil will support tap and swipe gestures, which would allow iPad Pro users to do things like change the size or color of a brush within a sketching app using the sides of the Apple Pencil.

iPad mini


Reliable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo believes Apple is working on an upgraded iPad mini that features an upgraded processor and a lower-cost display panel, which suggests it will be more affordable than the current version.

Kuo wasn't entirely sure if Apple plans to release the iPad mini at its October event or at a later date in 2018 or early 2019, but there's a possibility it will be unveiled alongside new iPad Pro models.


We don't have any other information about the new iPad mini at this point in time, but it sounds like it's not going to get the same design refinements that are coming to Apple's iPad Pro lineup.

For more on the iPad mini, check out our iPad mini roundup.

MacBook Air


Apple has a 13-inch MacBook Air replacement in the works, which has been the subject of rumors for more than a year now. It's still not clear whether Apple plans to label the machine as MacBook Air or a MacBook, but some concrete details about the upcoming notebook can be gleaned from everything we've heard.

Positioned as an entry-level low-cost machine in Apple's product lineup, the notebook will be 13 inches in size and it will feature a Retina display. It is said to be similar in design to the current 13-inch MacBook Air, but with slimmer bezels.


It's not entirely clear how Apple will distinguish this machine from the 12-inch MacBook if it's going to be a MacBook Air with a Retina display, but if the design is similar to the current MacBook Air, the 12-inch MacBook will still be Apple's lightest machine, justifying its higher price tag.

Various pricing rumors have suggested that it could be available for anywhere from $799 to $1,200, but the most reliable source, Bloomberg, believes it will cost under $1,000.

Whiskey Lake chips appropriate for a MacBook Air-like machine were announced by Intel in August, and so Apple could potentially be planning to use these chips in the device.

For more on the mixed rumors we've been hearing about the 13-inch low-cost notebook, check out our MacBook Air roundup.

MacBook


Regardless of whether the rumored lower-cost 13-inch notebook is positioned as a MacBook Air or a MacBook, rumors suggest Apple is planning to maintain the 12-inch MacBook lineup and a MacBook refresh is said to be in the works.

Upgraded 12-inch MacBooks are likely to feature Intel's 8th-generation Amber Lake Y-series processors, announced in August. These chips bring processor and battery improvements, so new MacBooks could offer both faster performance and longer battery life.


Aside from upgraded Intel chips, there's been little information on what else Apple might add to a refreshed MacBook lineup.

For more on the MacBook, check out our 12-inch MacBook roundup.

iMac


Apple refreshes its iMac lineup on a regular basis, and reliable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo recently said that an updated model is in the works and set to launch at Apple's October 30th event.

We're expecting new iMacs that feature upgraded 8th-generation Intel processors, improved GPUs, and perhaps the adoption of the T2 chip that was introduced in the iMac Pro and has since been added to the MacBook Pro.


For more on the iMac, make sure to check out our iMac roundup.

Mac mini


Apple is working on a refreshed version of the Mac mini that's focused on the pro user base. The upgraded device will feature new storage and processor options, and because Apple is aiming it at pro users, some models could be more expensive than previous Mac mini products.

We don't have a lot of additional information available on what to expect from the Mac mini, but one rumor suggested the higher-end model "won't be so mini anymore," hinting at one configuration with a larger size to accommodate higher-end components.


Given that the new Mac mini is going to be a pro-focused machine, it's not clear what chips it will adopt, but Intel this year has announced 8th-generation processors appropriate for both desktop and notebook machines. Past Mac mini models have used the same chips as the 13-inch MacBook Pro, but Apple may be planning to opt for more powerful chips for a pro Mac mini model.

For everything we've heard on the Mac mini, check out our Mac mini roundup.

Other Possibilities


Mac Pro Preview


Apple last year announced work on a high-end high-throughput modular Mac Pro that will facilitate regular upgrades to meet the needs of Apple's pro user base.

Apple has said this new, redesigned Mac Pro will launch at some point in 2019, but in the past, the company has provided us with early previews and the work on the Mac Pro is no secret, so it's possible we'll get a little taste of what to expect at this fall Mac-focused event.

Modular Mac Pro concept from Curved.de

For more on Apple's work on a redesigned Mac Pro, check out our Mac Pro roundup.

iMac Pro


As should come as no surprise, Apple is working on a next-generation iMac Pro model, which Bloomberg confirmed this afternoon. There are no new chips available that would be appropriate for an upgraded iMac Pro right now, but it's possible Apple will give us some details on when we can expect a refreshed iMac Pro machine.


AirPower and AirPods


We're still waiting on the AirPower, the three-device charging mat that Apple introduced in September 2017. When it made its debut, Apple said it would launch at some point in 2018, and we've got a few months to go, so it could potentially make an appearance at the October event.

We're not counting on it though, as Apple made no mention of the AirPower at its September iPhone-focused event, where a launch would have made more sense.


The AirPower is designed to charge the Apple Watch (Series 3 and 4), glass-backed iPhones, and AirPods all at the same time, with a wireless charging case required to enable wireless charging for the AirPods.

Alongside the AirPower, Apple is supposed to be introducing a new AirPods Charging Case that adds wireless charging to the earbuds, so if we see the launch of the AirPower, AirPods are likely to launch alongside it.

In addition to wireless charging, refreshed AirPods could gain an upgraded wireless chip that supports hands-free "Hey Siri" functionality. With "Hey Siri" support, AirPod owners will be able to activate Siri without needing to double tap on the AirPods with a finger.

Existing AirPods Charging Case next to redesigned AirPods Charging Case with wireless charging capabilities

No other major changes are rumored for the AirPods this year, but there have been some hints that Apple is working on a set of Apple-branded high-end over-ear headphones that could launch in late 2018 at the earliest, so we may see a mention of them. Rumors on a launch date have been mixed, though, so Apple may not be ready to debut these until 2019.

For more information on the AirPods, check out our AirPods roundup.

How to Watch


Apple's event will kick off at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time, three hours earlier than events are normally held. This year's event is happening earlier because it's taking place on the East Coast instead of the West Coast.

Apple is planning to live stream the product unveilings on its event website and through the Events app on the Apple TV.

For those unable to watch, MacRumors will have live coverage both here on MacRumors.com and on our MacRumorsLive Twitter account, along with continuing coverage over the course of the next few weeks.

What are you most looking forward to seeing Apple introduce this year? Let us know in the comments.
Ahead of Apple's October 30th event, respected Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo shared some details about what we can expect to see Apple to unveil during the event as well as information on other products that we might see from Apple in late 2018 or early 2019.

Kuo has several interesting predictions, including an updated iPad mini and details on the launch of the AirPower.


iPad Pro


Kuo says that we can expect to see two new iPad Pro models that are equipped with USB-C, improved displays, and an Apple Pencil with a new design. Further details were not shared on what improvements to expect with the displays or what a redesigned Apple Pencil might look like.

All of these features have been previously rumored for Apple's upcoming iPad Pro models, which are also expected to feature Face ID, edge to edge screens, and no Home button.

iPad mini


Kuo says that Apple will launch a new version of the iPad mini, which has not seen an update in several years. Kuo says the device will feature an upgraded processor and a lower-cost panel.

Kuo does not know, however, if Apple will announce it during the media event or launch it sometime later in the year/early next year, but if an updated model is in the works, it makes sense for it to launch alongside the iPad Pro.

Mac models


At Apple's event, we can expect to see several Mac updates with upgraded processors and other internal improvements. Kuo says we can count on a new low-cost notebook and updates to the MacBook, iMac, and Mac mini.

AirPower and AirPods


According to Kuo, Apple could launch new AirPods and the AirPower either late in the fourth quarter of 2018 or early in the first quarter of 2019, but he doesn't yet know the company's specific plans.

It's possible that if Apple is planning on debuting the AirPower before the end of 2018 as promised, it could be mentioned at the October event, but Kuo doesn't say either way. The AirPower, first unveiled in September 2017, is meant to charge three devices at once, including an iPhone, the AirPods, and the Apple Watch, but it's been delayed for several months now.

As for the AirPods, we can expect to see an upgraded wireless charging case that will work with the AirPower along with a new wireless chip that enables "Hey Siri" functionality.

Apple's October event is set to take place on Tuesday, October 30 at 10:00 a.m. Eastern Time. This year's event is being held earlier in the day than normal because it is being hosted in New York City instead of Cupertino.

Apple will provide a live stream of the event on its event website and through the Events app on the Apple TV, but for those who can't watch, MacRumors will provide live coverage both here on MacRumors.com and through our MacRumorsLive Twitter account.
Bloomberg's Mark Gurman and Debby Wu today previewed details about Apple's widely rumored trio of 2018 iPhones. Towards the end of the report, there are also a few details about the Apple Watch and iPad that we've highlighted below.


The first noteworthy tidbit is that Apple Watch Series 4 models will be compatible with existing bands, as they are said to have a similar physical size as Series 3 models and earlier. Gurman already said as much earlier this year, but there were some lingering concerns from MacRumors readers in our discussion forums.

Apple Watch Series 4 models are still expected to have up to 15 percent larger displays, as a result of slimmer bezels around the screen. They're also expected to have slightly longer battery life, along with new health and fitness features.

The second tidbit worth singling out is that the iPad mini won't be updated this year, according to Gurman. That information corroborates DigiTimes, which recently reported that "Apple so far has no further plan for the iPad mini series," which hasn't been refreshed since the iPad mini 4 launched in September 2015.

Apple's focus on the lower-cost 9.7-inch iPad may result in the iPad mini line being discontinued eventually, although Gurman hasn't specified.

We're likely just a few weeks away from Apple's usual September event at Steve Jobs Theater, with invites to the media likely to be issued this week. In addition to the new iPhones and Apple Watch Series 4 models, Apple is expected to unveil two new iPad Pros with Face ID, new AirPods, and AirPower pricing and availability.
Apple will launch its much-rumored "entry-level" MacBook in September, according to a report by DigiTimes outlining Apple's upcoming product launches. The website says the new MacBook will be priced at $1200, according to industry sources, and will be powered by 14-nanometer Kaby Lake CPU architecture, following delays to Intel's 10-nm rollout.


Earlier this year, DigiTimes said that Apple will release the first MacBook Air with a Retina display in the second half of 2018, and claimed that it will be a 13-inch model in a separate report. It also recently said Quanta will assemble new "inexpensive notebooks" for Apple in the fourth quarter. However, the idea of a $1200 MacBook Air leaves the question of a sub-$1000 MacBook offering wide open.

TrendForce believes Apple will release a new MacBook Air in September or October, while both Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo and Bloomberg reporter Mark Gurman expect Apple to release a new entry-level notebook later this year. Whether that's a MacBook or a MacBook Air remains unclear, but Gurman expects at least one of them to have a $999 starting price.

Today's DigiTimes report also claims Apple will use the September event to announce the "launch schedule" for its wireless AirPower charger, costing in the region of $160-$190. Apple previewed its multi-device AirPower charging mat at its iPhone X event last September, and confirmed that it will be released at some point in 2018, but it has yet to reveal how much it will cost. An earlier rumor citing "industry insiders" has suggested a price point of around $149.

Apple is expected to announce two new iPad Pro models this September measuring in at 11 and 12.9-inches, featuring slimmer bezels and a TrueDepth camera with support for Face ID. DigiTimes claims the two redesigned iPad Pros will sit alongside Apple's 9.7-inch iPad and iPad mini 4 to complete its tablet lineup, but notably the report also claims Apple has "no further plan" for the iPad mini.

Elsewhere in today's round-up, DigiTimes claims Apple's next-generation iPad Pro models will come with a newly designed 18-watt USB-C power adapter for faster charging. Apple is rumored to be including the more powerful charger with its new trio of iPhones coming this year, but this is the first time we've heard that it could also feature as part of Apple's iPad lineup. The adapter would presumably connect to the iPads with a Lightning to USB-C cable, also included in the box.

Apple's iPads have traditionally come with 10–12W adapters, so including the 18W USB-C power adapter would make sense as it would allow for faster charging without requiring users to purchase separate charging accessories at additional cost. Apple's current iPad Pro models already support fast charging using one of Apple's USB-C charge adapters paired with a Lightning cable. With this setup, a 2017 iPad Pro can be charged in half the time.

Lastly, today's DigiTimes report reiterates previous rumors surrounding Apple's new 2018 iPhone lineup, which is expected to include two OLED models measuring in at 5.8 and 6.5 inches, and a 6.1-inch lower-cost LCD model. All three will feature Face ID and edge-to-edge displays.
Apple today reduced the price of AppleCare+ for 9.7-inch iPad and iPad mini models to $69 in the United States, down from $99.


AppleCare+ was previously $99 for any iPad, but that price now applies to iPad Pro models only. The lower $69 price for the iPad and iPad mini has been offered by select Best Buy stores for the past several months.

AppleCare+ is an optional warranty plan that extends an iPad's or iPad mini's warranty period to two years from the original purchase date of the device, and adds up to two incidents of accidental damage coverage, each subject to a service fee of $49 plus applicable taxes in the United States.

AppleCare+ for iPad also provides 24/7 priority access to support advisors via online chat or phone for up to two years after the device's original purchase date. Without the plan, iPad owners are covered by Apple's limited one-year warranty and an initial 90 days of complimentary telephone support.

Apple charges out-of-warranty repair fees of $299 for the iPad mini 3 and iPad mini 4 and $249 for most 9.7-inch iPad models, including the sixth-generation model introduced at its education event today. By comparison, the upfront cost of AppleCare+ for iPad plus one incidental fee is $118, so the warranty can pay for itself.

AppleCare+ pricing for 9.7-inch iPad and iPad mini models has also been reduced in other countries, including Australia, Canada, Singapore, and the United Kingdom. Prices vary based on local currencies.

(Thanks, Christian!)
iPad remains the world's most popular tablet by a significant margin, having outsold competing devices from rivals Samsung and Amazon combined last year, according to data shared by research firm IDC today.


Apple sold a total of 43.8 million iPad units in 2017, as confirmed by its quarterly earnings results, while IDC estimates that Samsung and Amazon shipped 24.9 million and 16.7 million tablets respectively on the year. The combined Samsung-Amazon total of 41.6 million tablets is 2.2 million lower than iPad sales.

Apple captured a 26.8 percent share of the tablet market in 2017, meaning that roughly one in every four tablets sold last year was an iPad. Apple's tablet market share rose 2.5 percentage points year-on-year.


Last week, Apple reported revenue of $5.8 billion from iPad sales in the fourth quarter of 2017, representing growth of six percent compared to the year-ago quarter. Apple's average selling price of an iPad was $445, up slightly from $423 in year-ago quarter, suggesting more higher-priced iPad Pro sales.

Apple's growth in iPad sales, albeit relatively flat, contrasted with the overall tablet market's 6.5 percent decline in shipments in 2017 compared to 2016. iPad has been the world's most popular tablet since shortly after it launched.

Shifting focus to this year, Apple is rumored to launch at least one new iPad Pro model with slimmer bezels, no home button, and Face ID. We haven't heard much about the lower-cost 9.7-inch iPad and iPad mini, but each could certainly receive a routine speed bump this year among other upgrades as well.
Waiting for an iPad mini 5? You may be disappointed. BGR, citing a source close to Apple, claims the 7.9-inch tablet is being phased out. The report doesn't offer a timeline as to when the iPad mini will be discontinued, and its sources couldn't confirm if the iPad mini 4 will remain on sale for a period of time.


Apple is rumored to introduce a new 10.5-inch iPad Pro as early as the WWDC 2017 keynote on June 5, so it's conceivable to think the iPad mini could be axed then if the report is accurate. Apple's tablet lineup would then consist of the iPad Pro in 12.9-inch, 10.5-inch, and 9.7-inch sizes, and the new low-cost 9.7-inch iPad.

Apple launched the original iPad mini in 2012. Since the iPhone 6 Plus launched in 2014, it's been speculated that the 5.5-inch smartphone may be at least partially cannibalizing sales of the iPad mini, but Apple doesn't break out its tablet sales numbers on a model-by-model basis, so it's hard to say for sure.

Nearly two months ago, Apple discontinued the iPad mini 2 and stopped selling a 32GB version of the iPad mini 4. It also lowered the starting price of the 128GB iPad mini 4 to $399, which was previously the 32GB model's price point.

Japanese blog Mac Otakara claimed Apple would release a 7.9-inch iPad Pro in March with a Smart Connector, True Tone display, four speakers and microphones, a 12-megapixel rear camera with True Tone flash, and an improved processor, but it's already May and the rumor has yet to materialize.
Apple took down its online store early this morning as the company prepares to launch its special edition (PRODUCT)RED iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus in more than 40 countries and regions around the world.


Internet users attempting to access the store section of the U.S. site are being met with the familiar "We've got something special in store for you" placeholder, accompanied by a relaunch time of 8:01 a.m. Pacific Time, which is when Apple previously said it would officially be launching the new red colorway iPhone.

Today Apple is also launching a new lower priced 9.7-inch iPad to replace the iPad Air 2, as well as new storage tier options for the iPhone SE and the iPad mini 4.

The PRODUCT(RED) iPhone 7 will be available in 128GB and 256GB storage capacities for the same $749/$849 and $869/$969 prices as the equivalent iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus models in standard colors. The anodized aluminum's vibrant red finish has a white Apple logo and white front bezels.

Apple's new tablet, which it is simply calling "iPad", is Apple's new entry-level model at the 9.7-inch size, starting at $329 for 32GB and $429 for 128GB. The device will be available in more than 20 countries and regions.

The new 32GB and 128GB storage capacities for the iPhone SE will cost $399 and $499 respectively, replacing the original 16GB ($399) and 64GB ($449) storage capacities. All other specs for the smaller profile handset remain the same.

The new 128GB model iPad mini 4 with Wi-Fi will start at $399, which was previously the price for the 32GB model with Wi-Fi, which has been discontinued. A cellular model with 128GB of storage will also be available for $529.

During Tuesday's announcement of the new products, Apple also launched new Apple Watch bands and iPhone cases in new colors.

Despite the unusually early shuttering of the store, it's very unlikely that it relates to anything other than updates to the online ordering process to reflect the new products, but we'll keep readers updated as soon as we learn more.

(Thanks, Andrea!)
Apple today discontinued the iPad mini 2, which launched in November 2013 and was most recently sold for $269 in the United States. Apple's cheapest tablet is now the new 9.7-inch iPad, which starts at $329, while those preferring the 7.9-inch size can purchase the iPad mini 4 with 128GB of storage for $399.


Apple's tablet lineup has now been narrowed down to the iPad Pro in 9.7-inch and 12.9-inch sizes, a low-cost 9.7-inch iPad, and the iPad mini 4. Rumors suggest Apple is also readying a new 10.5-inch iPad Pro with a narrow bezel design, which could be unveiled at a future Spring event, WWDC 2017, or even later.
Apple today announced that the iPad mini 4 now offers more capacity for the same price. The 128GB model with Wi-Fi now starts at $399, which was previously the price for the 32GB model with Wi-Fi, which has been discontinued. A cellular model with 128GB of storage is also available for $529.


Apple has also introduced a new low-cost 9.7-inch iPad and discontinued the iPad mini 2 as part of its tablet lineup refresh. Japanese website Mac Otakara had claimed that Apple would release a 7.9-inch iPad Pro, but other analysts had disagreed, and it turns out the rumor was indeed incorrect, at least for now.

The newly priced iPad mini 4 is available now on Apple.com in Silver, Gold, and Space Gray with next-day shipping.
Multiple new iPad models are being tested in Cupertino and the nearby Bay Area, potentially confirming rumors suggesting several refreshed iPads are launching in the near future.

New iPad model identifiers have been spotted in device data collected by mobile marketing company Fiksu and were shared by TechCrunch this morning. Four identifiers have been popping up in data logs, but that doesn't necessarily correspond to four new devices as WiFi and WiFi + Cellular iPads historically have different model numbers. Fiksu believes the numbers correspond to between two and four new iPads.


Below are the iPad identifiers that have been found along with their corresponding count, as provided by Fiksu. Only a small number of visits have been seen, which Fiksu says is "about the same number we see being tested about a month before release."

- iPad 7,1 - 17
- iPad 7,2 - 11
- iPad 7,3 - 5
- iPad 7,4 - 10

These identifiers are similar to identifiers for existing iPad Pro models, which are as follows:

- 12.9-inch iPad Pro (Wi-Fi) - iPad 6,7
- 12.9 inch iPad Pro (Cellular) - iPad 6,8
- 9.7-inch iPad Pro (Wi-Fi) - iPad 6,3
- 9.7-inch iPad Pro (Cellular) - iPad 6,4

At the very least, the presence of these identifiers suggests there are a minimum of two new iPad models in the works, in line with rumors suggesting Apple is working on both a revamped 10.5-inch iPad Pro that will effectively replace the 9.7-inch iPad Pro and a new 12.9-inch model.

The 10.5-inch iPad Pro is said to feature a nearly bezel-free edge-to-edge display that allows Apple to fit a larger screen in the same 9.7-inch form factor, and it is said to include an A10X processor and Touch ID built directly into the display.

Rumors sourced from reliable KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo have suggested there are supposed to be three new models on the horizon, including a 12.9-inch tablet, a lower-cost 9.7-inch tablet (priced as low as $299), and the flagship 10.5-inch tablet, while Japanese site Mac Otakara has claimed Apple could be working on four iPads, the three mentioned by Kuo along with a 7.9-inch iPad mini Pro model.

Though Fiksu is seeing only four identifiers, it's possible additional iPads are in development but haven't been found in device logs as of yet.

On the other hand, it potentially indicates we're going to get a new 10.5-inch model and a new 12.9-inch model, with no new iPad mini or refreshed lower-end 9.7-inch model. This scenario doesn't fit Mac Otakara's prediction, but should Apple lower the price of the existing 9.7-inch iPad Pro, it does fit in with what Kuo has predicted.

Apple's new iPads could debut as soon as later this month, according to supply chain analysts who shared the information with MacRumors this morning. Apple may be planning an event or a release for late March, perhaps even as early as next week.

Update: Fiksu has released an additional chart that displays the count of new iPad models in its data starting in September. The number of iPad Pro models have been steadily ramping up, leading Fiksu to predict an "imminent" release date within a month.