Since the first game-changing iPad debuted in 2010, Apple has improved the display resolution on its tablet, slimmed down its design, and packed it with a speedier processor. Meanwhile, more than 375,000 tablet-optimized apps have made their way to the App Store, giving Apple a huge advantage over the Android competition. So what should you expect from the iPad 5? From design and specs to possible availability, here’s a roundup of some of the most plausible rumors from around the Web.
If there’s one rumored feature we can count on for the iPad 5, it’s likely to be a slimmer and sleeker design. Reportedly leaked photos of Apple’s next generation iPad have shown a front plate with thinner side bezels. This would make the screen look larger without actually having to compromise the size of the tablet. Photos posted by Sonny Dickson, the renowned Apple leakster that tipped us to the iPhone 5s, revealed these allegedly thinner side bezels that are reminiscent of the iPad Mini. At the same time, CNETis reporting that Apple will make its tablet sleeker by reducing the size of its LED backlight. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo wrote in April that he expects the new iPad to be 15 percent thinner and 25 percent lighter than the fourth-generation iPad.
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There’s a lot that can be gathered from examining the history of Apple’s product launches, which leads us to believe a new iPad launch is on tap for October. Apple announced its fourth-generation iPad alongside the iPad Mini in October of 2012, so it’s about time for a refresh.What’s more, credible Apple bloggers such as iLounge’s Editor-in-Chief Jeremy Horwitz are also reporting that an October release date is likely.
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Thinner, Brighter Display
While there’s some debate about the type of display technology that will appear in the fifth-generation iPad, reports suggest that the display will be brighter and more efficient. KGI Securities analyst Ming- Chi Kuo speculates that the iPad 5 will come with GF2 technology built into its display, according to TechRadar. This is the same display tech built into the iPad Mini, which is supposed to make the iPad 5’s display brighter and thinner than its predecessor. At 432 lux, the iPad Mini’s display is noticeably brighter than the fourth generation iPad’s 346 lux display. Meanwhile, Jeremy Horwitzis speculating that IGZO screen technology may be more sensible for the iPad 5.
A speedier processor is fairly standard for next-generation product launches, so we’re expecting to see faster internal components in the next iPad. However, there’s been some debate about what type of chip Apple will use to power the iPad 5. Brian White of Topeka Capital Markets predicted that an A6X processor would be used in Apple’s next tablet. But now that the iPhone 5shas arrived sporting an A7 chip, that seems more likely. Conflicting reports from Patently Apple and MacRumors suggest that we’ll see either an A7 chip or an A7X chip, but we’ll have to wait until Apple makes the announcement to learn more.
TechRadar speculates that Apple will keep with the same pricing conventions it has with iPads thus far. This means we may expect the iPad 5 to start at $499 for the Wi-Fi only 16GB, $599 for the 32GB version and $799 for 64GB. Is it possible that Apple will start at a lower price to combat cheaper Android slates? We doubt it. That's what the iPad mini is for, and even that smaller tablet carries a $100 premium relative to the new Nexus 7.