It’s been a long time since we talked about Apple’s plans for a new iPad Air tablet. With the first-gen model launching in fall 2013, and the iPad Air 2 in fall 2014, the smart money might have been on us seeing an iPad Air 3 this past October, but as early as mid-summer, we were hearing rumors that the tablet might sit this year out in favor of what we ultimately got: the iPad Pro and iPad mini 4. But could another iPad Air still be in the works for some future date? A new analyst report suggests that answer is “yes,” and that we could see it land well in advance of next fall.

The research note claims that Apple’s likely looking to introduce the iPad Air 3 sometime in the first half of 2016, though it leaves that launch window nice and wide.

We’ve already heard rumors about a possible March event that may introduce the second-gen Apple Watch, and there’s also been mention that maybe a new, smaller iPhone could show up, too – if we’re really getting an early-year iPad Air 3 as well, its presence at the same event might make a lot of sense.

As for the tablet itself, this report drops one potential bombshell: Apple could skip 3D Touch for the iPad Air 3. The analysis blames hardware production issues for the absent feature, as it doesn’t appear Apple would be able to line up the needed hardware for a 3D Touch iPad Air 3 with the timetable we’re talking about.

Source: 9to5 Mac

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