You might want to hold off on buying an iPad right now. According to reputable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, the Cupertino tech giant has a new lineup of iPad Pro and iPad tablets slated for next year, with a "revolutionary" flexible OLED model to follow in 2018.
According to Kuo's latest research (as reported by MacRumors), Apple will release a new 10.5 inch version of the iPad Pro as well as a 12.9-inch iPad Pro 2, both of which may run on a speedy new A10X processor. The company is also reportedly prepping a new "low-cost" 9.7-inch iPad, which could be powered by the current A9X chip.
The iPad Pro currently comes in 12.9-inch and 9.7-inch variations, so the 10.5-inch model could appeal to shoppers who want a bigger-than-normal (but not absolutely massive) productivity tablet. A cheaper 9.7-inch iPad would give budget-conscious customers more options; the 16GB iPad mini 2 is Apple's only slate under $300. As for the mini, there's no word on what this new lineup might mean for Apple's smallest tablet.
But while next year could usher in some welcome iPad refreshes, 2018 may be a year of revolution for Apple's slate. Kuo predicts that the iPad will adopt a flexible AMOLED panel by 2018, which could allow for new, slimmer designs, richer colors and better power consumption. This falls in line with reports of Apple's iPhone adopting OLED, which could happen as soon as next year.
Even with these new models on the horizon, Kuo predicts that tablets will continue to decline, possibly due in part to smartphones continuing to offer bigger and better screens. Still, if you've been eyeing the iPad Pro or 9.7-inch iPad, next year might be a good time to pick one up. Apple's next major launch event is expected to take place on Sept. 7 -- it will likely be focused on new iPhones, but you might want to keep your eyes peeled for new tablets.
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