iPad 5 release date, price, features & specs rumours
Posted on 10 May 2013 at 15:03, by David Ludlow
Our iPad 5 release date, specs, features & price rumours article is updated regularly, so check back for the latest update. Updated on the 10th May with more launch information and .
From Apple's point of view, the new model made sense, even if it was a minor upgrade. It added the same Apple A6 processor (technically, the A6X with quad-core graphics) and Lightning connector as used on the iPhone 5, putting Apple's mobile products in line with each other.
However, the iPad 4 was hardly going to garner the same levels of excitement and interest as the iPad 3. It's no wonder that everyone's excited to see what Apple can do with the iPhone 5. We round up the latest rumours here.
iPAD 5 RELEASE DATE
Pretty much every month has been mooted for the launch of the iPad 5 and, as usual, Apple is staying steadfastly quiet on the matter. So, we'll just round up what's been said and how likely we think it's going to be.
First, the easy one: the rumoured launch date of March 2013 is, of course, completely wrong. Initial rumours were based on the fact that Apple releases products once a year. Assuming that the iPad 4 was just a tweak, March 2013 was a year after the launch of the iPad 3.
So, with that date out, what's next? All of the most recent information seems to point to Apple gearing up for a June launch for its tablet. This would give it enough distance from the iPad 4 to warrant a new model, without running the risk of annoying its customers by releasing three new iPads within a year.
According to information from the latest case leaks, Tactus has said it's been told that the iPad 5 will be announced on the 18th of June and will go on sale just nine days later on the 27th June. This information is from a case manufacturer that showed off its iPad 5 case, which it built based on leaked moulds.
Again, we wouldn't put too much stock in this information. While case manufacturers can build mock-ups based on leaked specs and, in some cases, leaked moulds, this says nothing about a launch date. Case manufacturers, in our experience, don't usually have the inside track on a launch date and the 18th June seems like a date that's been plucked out of the air.
In a recent investor call from Apple, an Autumn launch for the iPad 5 came out as a distinct possibility. Tim Cook, Apple CEO, said: "Our teams are hard at work on some amazing new hardware, software, and services that we can’t wait to introduce this fall and throughout 2014." Cook definitely seems to be suggesting that we're going to have to wait a few more months to get an iPad 5.
iPAD 5 MANUFACTURER
Could a later than expected launch date be down to manufacturing issues and Apple changing manufacturer? According to the latest rumours, Apple is moving manufacturing away from long-term partner, Foxconn.
Nothing official has been said, but it goes along these lines. Foxconn saw a dip in review in April, which people initially put down to lower-than-expected iPad and iPhone sales. However, Apple's quarterly reports showed that there was no dip in sales, so the Foxconn revenue has to be accountable elsewhere.
So, the rumour is that Apple has moved part of its manufacturing business away from Foxconn. The move is said to be because of management changes at Foxconn making the company less reliable. However, if the move is true, Apple will have to set up a new production line elsewhere, which would take time and money. It's all hearsay and conjecture, though, so we wouldn't read too much into this.
iPAD 5 DESIGN
If there's one thing that everybody seems to agree on, it's that the iPad 5 will be based on the iPad Mini. In other words, it's going to have narrower bezels and be a lot thinner. The latest leak comes from Tactus, with a picture that allegedly shows the rear shell of the iPad 5.
It's hard to tell anything from the low-resolution photo, but what you can see is that the rear shell shows a tablet that's thinner than the iPad.
What's more convincing is that there have been leaks of cases showing the same kind of thing. First, BGR reported images found on Alibaba, a Chinese e-commerce site, which showed that the new iPad 5 would be styled on the iPad Mini.
Next, MacRumours displayed some pictures from MiniSuit, showing how the new iPad 5 case stacked up against the iPad Mini and iPad 4 cases.
Yet another case leak, over at EnGadget, backs up the initial claim that the iPad 5 will follow the same design cues as the iPad Mini. At the Hong Kong Electronics Fair, EnGadget managed to get some pics of another case. According to staff on the booth, the case is based on a leaked mould.
Compared to cases made for the current iPad, the new case again shows a thinner and smaller tablet is in the works. It also shows that the new tablet is likely to have the same size screen as the iPad 4. Overall, it's hard to argue that the new case doesn't point towards the iPad 5 looking like a large iPad Mini.
Tactus has found a similar case design from the Far East. From the picture below, you can see the iPad 4 case on the right (blue) and the iPad 5 case on the left (green). The iPad 5 case is allegedly made from a leaked mould, and shows that the new tablet is going to be thinner and slimmer than the previous model.
There's not too much in it, but from the slimmer size the most obvious observation is that the iPad 5 will have a 9.7in screen, like the iPad 4, but a thinner bezel. In other words, as everyone's been saying, the iPad 5 is going to look like a large iPad Mini.
Cases are often a good indicator of what a product will look like. Case manufacturers often get hold of early spec information so that they can start to make products before a product is officially launched. It can be a gamble, but getting it right and being first to market can bay dividends. Typically, case manufacturers don't start producing samples until we're near launch, in order to get their product as accurate as possible, hinting that the iPad 5 is very close to production.
Rumours that the iPad 5 will look like the iPad Mini continue, with a photo appearing that is allegedly the front of the new tablet. As you can see from the image below, the front has a thinner bezel than the existing iPad. However, we wouldn't necessarily believe this picture, as it could be faked or simply a Chinese clone.
iPAD 5 SCREEN
Apple has always been known for its amazing displays on its tablets, and the iPad 5 should be no different. Industry insiders are strongly tipping Apple's new tablet to use the latest technology and it seems entirely possible that it will use an IGZO (Indium Gallium Zinc Oxide) screen.
IGZO screens use up to 90 per cent less power when displaying still images, which would be great for battery life, and are considerably thinner than existing technology. IGZO would fit in well with reports that the new iPad will be as thin as 7.2mm, as reported by 9to5Mac.
There's even more evidence that Apple is thinking about IGZO, as CES 2013 was the first time that we saw the Sharp IGZO display. The model we saw was a 32in 4K display, but that's not to say that the technology can't successfully be shrunk down to fit the iPad.
It's also clear that if Apple wants to mimic the iPad Mini's design with the iPad 5, it's going to have to slim down the screen technology to fit. While IGZO will do that it's also rumoured that the iPad 5 will get a slimmer LED backlight. This will let Apple make a smaller, thinner iPad, not to mention saving on cost.
While all of this technology is really interesting, the fact is that Apple already has thinner touchscreen technology. For the iPad Mini 2, it used GF2 (also called GF Ditto) technology. It was this tech that allowed Apple to make the Mini much thinner than the existing iPad. You can argue that with a lower-resolution screen, the iPad Mini required less tech, but it's important to note that the Mini is also thinner than the iPad 2.
Originally, the GF2 technology was blamed for the high price of the Mini and the initial shipping delays down to production issues. However, Apple has now ironed those problems out, meaning that GF2 is a valid technology for the new iPad.
iPAD 5 RESOLUTION
The main question now is, what size will that display be? The iPad 3 and iPad 4 both had 9.7in 4:3 displays with a resolution of 2,048x1,536. It's entirely possible that Apple will stick with this resolution and size for the iPad 5, particularly if the design rumours are true. These point to a thinner 9.7in device that take on the design elements of the iPad mini.
If the iPad 5 has a 9.7in screen, then it's more than likely it'll keep the same resolution as the previous two iPads. According to Apple, its existing iPad has a Retina display, which means you can't see the individual pixels when used at a normal distance. In other words, it means that adding more resolution is technically pointless, as you wouldn't get any benefit.
That's not to say that Apple won't try something completely different, particular as its competition has caught up, such as with the Google Nexus 10, which has a screen resolution of 2,560x1,600. At 300ppi, Google's tablet has a higher pixel density than the iPad 5's 264ppi.
iPAD 5 WIRELESS CHARGING
Wireless charging seems to be something that every company is investigating, but the Apple could do it a different way with the iPad 5.
AppleInsider has found a new Apple Patent, which covers a new Smart Cover that houses the inductive charging transmitter. When the cover is connected to the iPad and closed, it activates and lets you charge the device via a wireless charger.
It's important to point out that the current generation iPads don't have the wireless charging circuitry in them, so the new Smart Cover wouldn't work. That could mean that this is a new feature for the iPad 5 and iPad Mini 2.
iPAD 5 CAMERA
The iPad usually seems to be a about a generation behind the iPhone in terms of camera quality. So, the iPad 4 has the 5-megapixel sensor of the iPhone 4S, while the iPhone 5 has an 8-megapixel sensor. With the iPhone 5S and iPhone 6 rumoured to be moving to a 12-megapixel sensor, it most likely means an upgrade to the iPad 5. So, we're likely to see an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera on the iPad 5, which should improve the quality of the tablet's shots.
iPAD 5 STORAGE
It would seem that a 128GB model is now absolutely certain, as Apple released a 128GB iPad 4, doubling the maximum amount of storage available on its tablets.
This update was said to be about increasing the variety of uses for the tablet, with Apple stating that more storage was good for large files for use in applications such as CAD and music production. It's also a more useful amount of storage for photos and videos.
The update to the iPad 4 was a completely new model with a new price, so we'd expect the same range of capacities and prices to be available from the iPad 5: 16GB, 32GB, 64GB and 128GB. With Apple now using 128GB storage in its tablets, the question is whether or not it will provide the same range of capacities in its iPhone and iPad Mini range, too.
iPAD 5 PRICE
If there's one thing that we can be more certain of, it's price. Apple typically prices its new products at the same price as the outgoing models. If that's true, the iPad 5 should start at £399 for the 16GB model, £479 for 32GB, £559 for 64GB and, if the £80 price increase per model holds out, £639 for 128GB. Of course, it could be that the 16GB model is dropped, and the 32GB model starts at £399, with 128GB for £559. Mobile 4G versions should cost £100 more.
As we reported above about the new storage capacities, Apple introduced a 128GB iPad 4 for £639 (Wi-Fi only) and £739 (Wi-Fi + Cellular), which is just what we predicted it would cost. By that token, we'd guess that the iPad 5 will go on sale for the same prices as the existing iPad.
So, first apple increased the weight of iPad (3&4 compared to 2) and now reduced it… how it is a good thing? I think its cheating with consumers… no wonder, apple is going down… consumer is awake!
Small shop owners increase prices by 50% the first day and then give 50% discount... Its only 25% discount actually... Nice tactic and the consumer feel happy that it is saving 50%!!!
By anujbeinghuman on 20 Apr 2013
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