Tag Archive: ipad mini 4

September 2015: Apple announces iPad Pro and iPad mini 4

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On Wednesday, Apple held their final special media event of the year to announce the rest of their 2015 product lineup. At the event, they showed off the long-rumored iPad Pro and nearly missed telling us about the new iPad mini 4. The iPad Pro is more powerful than the iPad Air 2, yet it has an incredibly thin design and comes with a few new accessories. The iPad mini 4 is now a miniature version of the iPad Air 2, except for a few changes. The iPad Air 3, as expected, was not announced and will likely be held off until 2016.

iPad Pro

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The iPad Pro has a massive 12.9″ display, which is 3″ larger diagonally than the iPad Air 2.

The first-generation iPad Pro was announced at Apple’s special media event on September 9th, 2015. This “monster of an iPad” joins the iPad mini 4, iPad mini 2 and iPad Air 2 in this year’s iPad lineup.

  • display12.9-inch Retina display (diagonal), with a resolution of 2732-by-2048 at 264ppi
  • dimensions: 12 inches tall, 8.68 inches wide and .27 inches thin (or 6.9mm); 1.56lbs for Wi-Fi only model and 1.59lbs for Wi-Fi + Cellular model
  • processor: A9X chip with embedded M9 coprocessor
  • connectivity: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.2
  • cameras: 8MP iSight rear camera with 1080p HD video recording, Slo-mo up to 120fps and Time-lapse; 1.2MP front camera with 720p HD video recording
  • payments: Touch ID and Apple Pay in apps only
  • battery: up to 10 hours on Wi-Fi and up to 9 hours on cellular data network
  • other features: ultra-slim design with fully laminated display and dual-microphones like iPad Air 2, Smart Connector, four stereo speakers, new accessories, exclusive iOS 9 features
  • colors, storage and pricing: silver, gold and space gray; 32GB Wi-Fi only for $799, 128GB Wi-Fi only for $949 and 128GB Wi-Fi + Cellular for $1079
  • release date: November 2015

Apple also announced the new Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard as optional accessories to use with they Pad Pro. The Apple Pencil is a pressure-sensitive stylus that was engineered to be highly responsive, draw lines of any weight (including shading) and work for 12 hours. It charges with the Lightning connector at the top of the pencil that connects directly to the iPad Pro. The Apple Pencil is available for $99. The Smart Keyboard is like Apple’s Smart Cover except it includes a keyboard and contact points for the iPad Pro’s Smart Connector. It has woven fabric covering all the keys with a stain- and water-resistant finish. The keyboard is available for $160.

iPad mini 4

The iPad mini 4 is a miniature version of the iPad Air 2.

The iPad mini 4 is a miniature version of the iPad Air 2.

The fourth-generation iPad mini 4 was quickly squeezed into the presentation on September 9th. Like last year’s announcement for the mini, Apple didn’t give it much air time. It’s rumored that this tablet will be the final generation of the iPad mini.

  • display: 7.9-inch Retina display (diagonal), with a resolution of 2048-by-1536 at 326ppi
  • dimensions: 8 inches tall, 5.3 inches wide and .24 inches thin (or 6.1mm); 0.65lbs for Wi-Fi only model and 0.67lbs for Wi-Fi + Cellular model
  • processor: A8 chip with M9 coprocessor
  • connectivity: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.2
  • cameras: 8MP iSight rear camera with 1080p HD video recording, Slo-mo up to 120fps and Time-lapse; 1.2MP front camera with 720p HD video recording
  • payments: Touch ID and Apple Pay in apps only
  • battery: up to 10 hours on Wi-Fi and up to 9 hours on cellular data network
  • overall changes: iPad Air 2 packed into the iPad mini 4
  • colors, storage and pricing: silver, gold and space gray; Wi-Fi only starting at $399 for 16GB and Wi-Fi + Cellular starting at $529 for 16GB
  • release date: September 9th, 2015

Leaked CAD images reveal iPad mini 4 have same design as iPad Air 2

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On Monday, CAD images of the 4th generation iPad mini were leaked online revealing that it will (as the rumors suggested) have the same form factor as the iPad Air 2.

Screen Shot 2015-08-10 at 11.21.52 AM

The iPad mini 4, like the iPad Air 2, will see changes in its external design to accommodate the slimmer body. The thickness will drop from 7.1mm to 6.5mm. The mute switch will be replaced with a second microphone, the speaker holes on the bottom will change from a double line to a single line and the volume buttons will be recessed. The new display will also be full laminated with an anti-glare coating. The iPad mini will, in every aspect, be a miniature version of the iPad Air 2.

The iPad mini is also rumored to be powered by the A8 processor and come with an 8MP rear camera.

iPad mini 4 coming with new thin design, 8MP camera

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As we anticipated last year, the iPad mini 4 will be receiving the major updates that its previous generation should have received when it was released in 2014. The third generation only saw minor updates, like an additional storage capacity, a gold color option and Touch ID. The iPad Air 2, which was released at the same time, had fresh internal specifications and a much thinner design. Japanese blog, Macotakara, is reporting that the iPad mini 4 will be receiving major updates to be like the iPad Air 2.

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Citing reliable sources, Macotakara says that the iPad mini 4 will be adopting several of the iPad Air 2’s hardware like it’s decreased thickness and higher-MP iSight camera. The current generation iPad mini is 7.5mm, but the report says that Apple will be changing the display on the new iPad mini to be fully laminated which will decrease the thickness to 6.5mm (matching the iPad Air 2). In addition, we should see the 5MP rear camera increase up to the iPad Air 2’s 8MP camera. We will probably also see internal specs updates to match the iPad Air 2’s hardware, like the A8X processor and faster Wi-Fi connectivity.

Despite rumors about the iPad Air 3 being delayed until 2016, we expect to see it alongside the iPad mini 4 and the iPad Pro in the fall. It has also been rumored that the iPad mini 4 will be the final generation before its discontinued.

Two reports claim iPad Pro coming in October alongside iPad mini 4

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This past week, two new reports came out about the iPad lineup with details for the release date of each model. The iPad Pro, which has been rumored for years, will finally be announced alongside the iPad mini 4 in October. The iPad Air 3 will apparently be put off until 2016. The first report comes to us from Economic Daily News and cites their source as an analyst so it’s based on someone’s thoughts versus someone actually working within the company. The second one, which is from DigiTimes, cites inside sources so it’s more likely to be correct.

A concept by Martin Hajek for the iPad Pro vs the iPad Air

Economic Daily News reports that Apple will be launching the iPad Pro and iPad mini 4 in October, as anticipated, but will hold off on the iPad Air 3 to focus their efforts on the larger tablet. The iPad Air 3 will wait until 2016 to get updated. It also says the fourth generation of the iPad mini will be final generation as Apple plans to discontinue it in favor of other similar products, like the iPhone 6 Plus with 5.5″ display. Apple may be seeing cannibalization in sales with their iPhone lineup versus the iPad lineup. The iPad mini used to be thought of as a smaller iPad, but now it’s more of a larger iPhone 6 Plus. I have both the iPhone 6 Plus and the iPad mini 2, but I don’t use my tablet as much as I did when I had the 4″ iPhone 5. The 6 Plus could replace the iPad mini or the mini could be used in conjunction with a smaller iPhone. If Apple comes out with the rumored 4″ iPhone 6c then perhaps the iPad mini would continue to have a place. Currently, I highly doubt Apple will discontinuing any iPad model any time soon and I doubt they would skip updating the iPad Air.

For the second report, DigiTimes writes that the iPad Pro will be announced in October and then released in mid-November. Apple is apparently “cautious” about placing orders so they are waiting until September for suppliers to start producing parts. Current rumors suggest the iPad Pro will have a 12.9″ Force Touch display with A9 processor and 2GB of RAM. It is also rumored to come with Apple’s first stylus, a USB-C port and NFC connectivity.

iPad Pro Mockup: Martin Hajek

Sources: Economic Daily News and DigiTimes

Leaked pictures show rear shell of iPad mini 4

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On Tuesday, Nowhereelse.fr posted a few pictures of the alleged rear shell for the iPad mini 4. The third generation iPad mini, which was released in October, only came with modest updates like Touch ID. The fourth generation device is rumored to have a design similar to the iPad Air 2.

iPad-Mini-4-01

Citing one of the site’s “most loyal moles”, the pictures and video show the rear shell for the cellular model of the iPad mini 4. Like the iPad Air 2 design, the volume/mute switch was removed and there’s a microphone hole in its place. The top has a space for the plastic cellular antenna and the bottom has ten holes on each side of the Lightning port for the speakers (versus the two rows of fourteen that previous generations of iPad mini have). On the back, the microphone has been moved from the center to next to the camera.

After the third generation iPad mini came out last year, it was rumored that we would see the fourth generation in spring 2015. We incorrectly guessed it would be announced at the Apple Watch event in early March, but there’s still an opportunity for it to come out at WWDC in early June (which is technically still spring).  It would be an out-of-cycle refresh, but it might be what Apple is planning to do in order to differentiate it from the iPad Air. With two tablets featuring the same design and specs, price will most likely be the deciding factor for consumers and they will likely go with the less expensive (iPad mini) model. So by separating their releases by 6 months or so, this will allow consumers to think differently of the tablets.

The iPad mini 4 is expected to have its processor upgraded to the A8 processor and faster 802.11ac Wi-Fi.

Expectations for Monday's Spring Forward Event: Apple Watch, Apple TV, MacBook Air

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The first special media event of the year, which starts at 10am Pacific time on March 9th, will most certainly be focused on the Apple Watch. Rumors have also suggested we may see a 12-inch MacBook Air, 4th generation Apple TV, iPad Pro, iOS 8.2 and more. Here we go through all the rumored products and tell you how likely/not likely they will be at the event.

Apple Watch

42mm case, 18-karat yellow gold, sapphire crystal, Retina display with midnight blue leather 18-karat yellow gold buckle, credit: Apple.com

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The Apple Watch, without a doubt, will be the focus of the event. The event occurs after Daylight Savings Time in the United States where our clocks “spring forward”, Tim Cook said the Apple Watch would be shipping in April and tons of reports have come out this past week about the Apple Watch.

The Apple Watch has three main collections: Apple Watch Sport, Apple Watch and Apple Watch Edition. The Sport model will start at $349, the mid-level watch should be about $499 and the Edition should start at $4,999.  Apple will also have various bands and other accessories for sale too. We predict the official launch of the Apple Watch should be within the first full week of April (perhaps on Friday, April 10).

A report on 9to5Mac recently detailed a few more unannounced features for the Apple Watch: Power Save mode, full Notification Center, Voice Control (not Siri) and a battery that lasts all day with up to five hours of heavy usage.

We expect Apple to spend the first first minutes of the event talking about updates, showing off a few new products and definitely mentioning the huge success that Apple Pay has been. They will then spend a good amount of time answering many of our questions about the Apple Watch including battery life, features, how it will work with the iPhone, etc. and then spend the second half of the event with developers demoing their apps. After the event, Apple will likely invite media into the special white building to test everything out.

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iOS 8.2

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The next major update to iOS 8 is expected to be shown off at Monday’s event and released immediately following it. We talked about Apple’s release notes recently for the final beta sent to carriers and employees, but we believe that there are a few features that have been left out. The update also will allow the iPhone to connect to Apple Watch, the iPhone 5/5s/5c to use Apple Pay (with Apple Watch) and it will come with two new apps. One app, called Companion, will manage settings on the Apple Watch, while the other one, called Fitness, will provide an overview of fitness activities with the watch.

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MacBook Air

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We primarily focus on iOS devices on this blog, but several other blogs have been persistent with rumors about an updated MacBook Air lineup. Whether Apple will reveal the 12-inch MacBook Air or just refreshed MacBook Airs, we are not sure, but we expect that the MacBook Air will make some sort of presence at the event.

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iPad mini 4

iPad mini 3 concept - Martin Hajek

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The 4th generation iPad mini was predicted back in late November to have an early 2015 release. It was believed that Apple purposefully made the iPad mini 3 underwhelming in order to differentiate it from the iPad Air 2. The larger tablet saw many external and internal updates, while the mini only saw new colors, higher storage capacities and Touch ID. SVP Phil Schiller literally spent thirty seconds about the iPad at the event and then moved on to the next topic. The iPad mini 4 will get the A8 processor, faster Wi-Fi and all the updates it should have received in October 2014.

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Apple TV

Apple TV Concept - July 2014

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The 4th generation Apple TV is rumored to have a complete redesign in terms of hardware and software. The unit will become slimmer and the remote will be more tactile and capable. Recent reports have suggested a fall release for this new device so we do not expect it at Monday’s event.

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iPad Pro

iPad Pro concept, credit: Martin Hajek

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According to Bloomberg and Digitimes, production for the iPad Pro has been pushed back to September due to supply issues with the display panel. This means that the iPad Pro will definitely not be at Monday’s event and more likely come out in the Fall.

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Other devices

The fifth generation iPod touch was rumored to come out early this year. There has been little to no evidence suggesting that Apple will launch this device at the event on Monday. Sometime this year we will probably see an update in the iPod lineup, but we don’t expect to see it this month.

Come back here Monday night to see an in-depth report of what Apple announced.

Please note that, with the exception of the Apple Watch picture (credit: Apple.com) and the iOS 8.2 picture (credit: iPhonehack.com), all pictures are concepts provided by Martin Hajek.

Report claims iPad mini 4 coming in early 2015 and will replace two generations

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In October, Apple refreshed their iPad lineup with the introduction of iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3.  The Air gained many improvements, like a thinner body, Touch ID, more efficient A8X processor and higher storage capacity, while the mini only received a couple updates.  We concluded that either Apple was discontinuing the iPad mini or they wanted to differentiate the two products since they are practically the same tablet with two sizes of displays.  Mac Fan is posting some details for the iPad Air Plus in their magazine for January and also claiming the iPad mini 4 will be coming out in the Spring, supporting our theory that Apple wants to differentiate the mini.

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The iPad mini 4 will be receiving the updates it should have received in October.  The processor powering the tablet will be upgraded to the A8X processor, like the iPad Air 2 and unlike the iPad mini 3.  It will also receive the same design that the Air 2 has and the tablet will replace the iPad mini 1st generation and iPad mini 3rd generation.  The iPad mini 4 will come out alongside the iPad Air Plus in the Spring.

It appears that instead of discontinuing the iPad mini, Apple is looking to change the release date so it will be viewed differently than the iPad Air.  Since they are virtually the same tablet with different screen sizes, Apple did not update the iPad mini in October so the Air looks like the superior product. It has the better processor and camera, faster Wi-Fi connection and more features.  When the mini is updated in the Spring, it will look like a better product, but in reality, it will be the same as the iPad Air. Perhaps with six months between the two tablets, they will appear different. Personally, I have the iPad 3 and iPad mini 2, but I prefer my mini.  My full-sized iPad doesn’t have much of a need since my Mac does the same things and it’s a lot more powerful.  My iPhone still has a small screen (iPhone 5) so that’s where my mini comes in.