The fifth-gen iPad will drop the same month as the next iPhone, rumours suggest, as the third quarter shapes up to be marked by a tsunami of new Apple products.

According to sources cited by Taiwanese site DigiTimes, which admittedly has a somewhat chequered record with leaks, the full-size Apple tablet’s next incarnation is on course to drop in three months time.

The 9.7-inch slate’s features purportedly take in a “slimmer bezel design to allow a bigger viewing area” and a longer-life battery.

Would-be iPad mini 2 buyers might have to kick their heels a while longer, however. The way DigiTimes tells it, the smaller tablet’s spec sheet is still in flux, a factor that could jeopardise a September launch date.

Apple could even yet decide to drop the Retina Display that features on the tablet, a development that’s surely related to rumours that retaining that screen’s high-density qualities in a smaller display is more of a challenge than expected.

ipad mini 2 render

The tech giant has also asked component suppliers to reduce the bezel size, in a bid to retain the screen’s 7.9-inch dimensions while shrinking the overall size of the device.

DigiTimes states: “As for the new 7.9-inch iPad mini, the sources pointed out that Apple is still considering whether to adopt a Retina Display for the device, and if the company decides to do so, the product’s release may be delayed to the end of the fourth quarter.”

September is also expected to see the arrival of a new iPhone or iPhones, amid speculation that 2013 could be the year Apple finally makes good on rumours of a cheaper, entry-level smartphone.



By Jonathan Leggett