Video killed the radio star, “iPhablets” did the same with 4-inch iPhones, and now it seems the once uber-popular iPad mini is about to be sacrificed in the name of progress as well.
The reportedly “disrupted” 2017 iPad lineup has been rumored time and time again to shake things up in terms of their predecessors’ screen sizes, possibly including at least one trendy bezelless model. Reputable KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claims this “narrow bezel design”-sporting high-ender will measure between 10 and 10.5 inches in diagonal, thus likely squeezing into the traditional body of a 9.7-inch iPad.
Meanwhile, the next-gen 9.7-incher should actually be the “low-priced option”, replacing 7.9-inchers at the base of the totem pole, with a “second generation of the existing 12.9” iPad Pro” allegedly set to complete the Q2 2017 trio.
Unsurprisingly, it sounds like only the two fancier, larger variants will pack an A10X chip manufactured by TSMC on a 10nm node, whereas the “entry-level”, lower-cost 9.7-inch 2017 iPad is currently expected to settle for last year’s Apple-designed A9X processor, but produced by Samsung this time around.
Unfortunately, the rest of the specifications, as well as the no doubt revised branding strategy, still remain under wraps. What’s practically guaranteed is a hike in the family’s average selling price, and a smaller decline in yearly shipments than before, to 35 million units or so.