Signs are pointing – nay, flashing – that new iPads are on the way from Apple soon, including apparent tablet testing taking place around the company’s corporate headquarters in Cupertino, Calif.
As spotted by mobile insights firm Fiksu (via TechCrunch), which tracks app usage, four never-before-seen iPad models are being put through the paces in Cupertino and beyond.
Fiksu notes four distinct models – iPad 7,3, iPad 7,4, iPad 7,2 and iPad 7,1 – are popping up in its tracking analytics. Previously, Fiksu picked up iPad model numbers 6,3/6,4 and 6,7/6,8 in the lead up to Apple’s last tablet launch. The iPad Pro 9.7 released in March 2016.
If Fiksu’s data is accurate, Apple is probably testing a quartet of tablets yet may only release two or three. According to the data, the operating system on these clandestine slates is a blend of iOS 10.3 beta and iOS 11, an OS that hasn’t released to the public yet. This could be another sign the tablets are brand-new hardware and not dog-eared devices.
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New iPad launch … next week?
Rumors point to Apple launching three new iPads when the time comes; the updated 12.9-inch , an all-new model in the 10.5- to 10.9-inch range, and an updated . One of the biggest changes we’ll likely see with the new tablets are slimmer bezels.
We may meet these devices sooner rather than later as MacRumors, citing trusted supply chain analysts, says Apple could announce the updated slates later this month. The most likely dates for thioccurrence ? Sometime between March 20 and March 24, the site says.
In case you haven’t checked your calendar yet, that’s next week. While it’d be a tight turnaround for Apple to send out invites for a launch event taking place in seven days, it’s not totally out of the question.
What is more likely, however, is that Apple will either send out invites for an event even later in March or sometime in April. Or, the iPhone maker could simply unveil its new tablets on its website and via press release without the fanfare of an official event.
With Apple CEO Tim Cook teasing “exciting things coming on iPad” during the company’s last earnings call, we have a feeling Apple will want to host an event to show off the innovations it’s been working on, especially as it looks to return the tablet to its former glory after disappointing sales.
With new iPad rumors coming in faster than ever, we’ll likely see what Apple has up its (very big) sleeve before long.