Uh, Tim, you forgot something: Where’s the Touch ID on new iPad Air, new iPad mini?

“This afternoon, Apple rolled out the latest iterations of its tablet line: the iPad Air and the new iPad mini. Though the new iPads are smaller, lighter, and faster than the previous models, they lack the great new Touch ID fingerprint reader of the iPhone 5s,” Max Eddy reports for PC Magazine.

“One of the signature features of OS X Mavericks, Apple’s newest desktop operating system, is cloud synching for your passwords between desktop, iPad, and iPhone. If someone nabbed your iPad, they’d be able to log in to all of your saved sites and use saved credit card numbers,” Eddy reports. “Including Touch ID on the iPhone made a lot of sense. The default four-digit passcodes are easy to break, and easy to learn just by watching someone use their device. Also, Apple said that a whopping 50 percent of its users didn’t even bother with a passcode. Touch ID, which can quickly authenticate you via your fingerprint, was meant to solve those problems.”

iPhone 5s' ID fingerprint identity sensor
iPhone 5s’ Touch ID fingerprint identity sensor

Eddy reports, “But the iPad Air and the new iPad mini, which have access to just about everything your iPhone has thanks to iCloud and other services, is stuck with the standard passcode. And, we have to assume, a huge number of users that simply don’t bother with security… Touch ID, or its next iteration, is coming to iPad but it’s not coming today. Which is a shame, but we probably won’t have long to wait. In the meantime, be sure to lock down your iPad just as carefully as you do your iPhone.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: “We probably won’t have long to wait?” That depends on your definition of long, we suppose. The lack of Touch ID anywhere was today’s most glaring omission.


  1. If touch id was going to cause a shortage issue right before the holidays due to them not being able to produce enough of the sensors then I’m ok with it and we can live with it. I hope it’s not because they are having technical issues with it. My 5s has been 99% spot on so I’d say the former is probably likely.

    1. Another reason may be that usage is much different between devices. People tend to carry their iPhones with them everywhere and are constantly turning the device on and off throughout the day in contrast to iPads which are more commonly used in stationary environments (home, office, school) where passcode security is sufficient for most users.

      Not to mention the cost factor. iPads @ $399 and $499 have a much lower profit margin than $650 (non-subsidized) iPhone for essentially the same technology and component costs.

      1. This.

        One of the reasons Microsoft (and others) have failed to produce a viable tablet computer was that they did not understand WHY and HOW such a device would be used. They did not realize that desktop computers (even when portable as a laptop), tablets and phones are different devices with different requirements and different usage profiles.

        1. I keep hearing this, but find it hard to believe that an iPad doesn’t get used out often enough to warrant this. Maybe it’s me living in the SF Bay Area but every day I see iPads being used like they do in the commercials. In parks, on trains, at work meetings, at lunch… I actually lose my iPad more than my phone since my phone goes in to my pocket. Luckily Find My Phone works on my iPad because I’ve used it to get my iPad back about 4 times this year… all reasons why TouchID would be a fantastic solution for iPads.

          I find it very unlikely that it is not included because Apple thinks it is not needed. It must be a shortage of parts or some other reason. I’m thinking of holding out past the holidays to see if a new iPad will come out with these the way new iPads came out 4 months later with faster CPU and lightning connectors last time.

      2. can’t people just admit apple like to fuck with consumers? it’s that simple. stop making excuses for them. then when they release touch id next year it makes you want to trade your air for more money.

      3. I agreed with this until I turned on iCloud Keychains on my iPad last night – in order to have that running on an iPad it requires a PASSCODE for the device now – Touch ID (in my opinion) is now a requirement for an iPad w/ iCloud Keychains turned on!

    2. I’d point out also that iPads aren’t being stolen out of people’s hands by the hundreds every day as are iPhones. The problem simply doesn’t exist in the level required to make the ID sensor system necessary as it did on the iPhone world.

      1. There wasnt any less the sensitive data on my iPad as there were on my iPad. Differences is my phone stays securely in pocket unlike my my iPad which don’t fit in my pocket. Story being ran into the store for a minute to find my car broken into and my iPad gone. Phone nicely in my pocket though

    3. I have a 64GB LTE iPad 3 and would have actually considered upgrading to the new iPad Air if it had Touch ID but without it I just don’t see a reason to upgrade. Yes, it’s lighter and slightly smaller and of course faster, but I have never used my current iPad and thought it was too slow, and it already has the Retina Display. It just seems to me that this is typical of how Apple operates, they are very aware that the way to keep the revenue coming is to make the product great but, leave a feature that everyone would like to have so that the next incremental update is a sure bet. I expect to see the next iPad come out with 128GB and Photo ID. And needless to say, I will buy that, so I guess I will hold on to my iPhone 5 until the 6 is released and upgrade my iPad at that time also.

        1. You are absolutely right, I didn’t realize they had them with 128GB.
          That is even more discouraging for me then, I would have upgraded to a iPad Air from my iPad 3 but I just can’t see it being worth the trouble for me without Touch ID.

          I use my iPad 3 just as much as my iPhone 5 as the screen on the iPhone is too small to really be preferred over my iPad. I always reach for my iPad first and I have both with me about 90% of the time.

    4. My guess is Apple didn’t have enough sensors to incorporate into the iPad. Rumor had it that the new iPhone’s were delayed because of production issues with touch I’D. They can barely keep up with production for iPhone, let alone having to meet the demands of producing them for iPad’ s as well.

      My guess, we’ll see a new iPad model mid-cycle, say sometime this spring called the iPad Pro. It will be the iPad Air with touch I’D and aimed at the enterprise and professional users.

      I’m sure Apple was very aware of this and would have loved to incorporate this into the new iPad. Touch ID is one of the biggest features that distinguishes the iPhone from other smart phones. This distinction would have went a long way to set it apart from other tablets. At least they have the 64 bit A7 processor, which blows the competition out of the water processorwise, touch ID would have driven the final nail home into all the non-Apple tablets.

      I’d be surprised if we have to wait an entire year to see this. You know that all of Apple’s competitors are rushing to get their own touch sensors incorporated into their devices.

  2. The other omission is gold iPads. Given that gold iPhones are flying off the shelf, it’s hard to understand how Apple did not extend it’s money-printing capabilities by giving people a matching set.

  3. The Touch ID has been well discussed as the key component that slows down supply of the iPhone 5s. No way in the world they are going to have their two flagship devices in crazy short supply during the biggest buying season of the year. Too many people will feel forced to buy other products for the gift giving season.

        1. Of course, being as paranoid as you seem to be, your fingertips have probably been filed down or acid washed so you have no fingerprints? Guess you won’t be needing touch id or probably any id in your world?

    1. You’re making me laugh. You’ve probably already been fingerprinted a number of times. If Google can get away with invasion of privacy, then Apple should also be able to get away with it. Apple will never remove Touch ID and every Android smartphone next year will have a fingerprint scanner just because Apple has one. With Android’s open nature the NSA will be able to harvest fingerprints from Android devices with the greatest of ease.

  4. Touch ID will probably come on the iPad Pro that many people are speculating about. And as a brand new feature around security, it still needs real-world testing, despite Apple’s exceptional care and attention. Having it on just one device is a smart decision right now.

    1. Agreed, this is Apple’s way of testing the waters on one of their most important devices, which will (provided no long-term issues appear) drive demand for it on future devices.

      And this is the perfect thing to help encourage people to buy the iPad Pro if it ever comes to fruition.

    2. If we’re discussing this in this forum, you can bet the house that this was heavily discussed by the Apple team. What better way to test the waters, than to just test this, and see how well it floats on one device to see how accepting and wanting users would be to Touch ID? Apple isn’t hung up like others, who try to jam pack every feature into a device, just so they can say, ours has this and that, and the iPad doesn’t. Apple will not incorporate a feature unless: They can meet component production, it works flawlessly and elegantly, and it’s something the users really want and need.

  5. My guess is that Apple uses iPhone as an experimental tech testing field. They stick something radical on it (like Siri, or TouchID) and test the waters. I’d be willing to bet that TouchID will be on the next generation of iPads.

  6. I wonder if an iPad Pro is on its way next year. What would it include aside from Touch ID? Inductive charger on a Smart Cover? I think so. Not sure how it would have a bigger screen. Perhaps Apple is planning on new software for dealing with the larger form factor. That would be a massive, massive job, but that wouldn’t stop Apple if they saw opportunity.

  7. Keep in mind that the iPad mini is 7.37mm thick, and the iPad Air is 7.5mm where the iPhone 5s is 7.6mm.
    That may not seem like much but have you seen the inside of one of those things? There’s not much room in there.

    1. The passcode, coupled with failed login count wipe, is enough to secure your precious info.

      with 10,000 possible codes, and only 10 chances, how is it possible to “easily guess” your code? So thoughtless…

      These writers not only don’t think, but when they try, they kick the ball down the wrong end of the field… It’s like progressing backwards…

  8. Whatever Apple’s reasons, I would have bought a new iPad mini with Retina right now if it had TouchID. But without it, I have no reason to upgrade my current iPad mini. Yes, Retina’s great, but not enough on its own to compel me to buy another of something I already have. So I’ll wait for the next iteration.

    That’s just me, though. They’ll continue to sell like hotcakes because they are superb products with or without TouchID.

  9. It makes sense, an iPhone is a personal tool, an iPad is like a computer which is used by many in a house. Unless Apple allows multiple users to log in to a iPad a touch Id will not make sense.

  10. While I would’ve liked to have had Touch ID on my new iPads, I’d rather not have to wait due to component constraints, like I have with my 5S Gold. As it is, I’m worried about the iPad mini being constrained due to the retina display. I don’t see how they can come close to meeting demand for it.

    Also, for me, my passcode is something I enter many times a day on my iPhone, but on my iPads, it’s usually just a couple of times when I go to use my iPad for a prolonged period of time.

  11. iPads aren’t snatched out of hands on subway platforms like iPhones. Police departments were not asking for a solution to stolen iPads like they were for stolen phones. Insisting on Touch ID for iPads is a typical techie reaction: apply a technology because we have it not because it solves a problem.

    1. TOUCH ID does not solve the problem. If anything Activation Lock does, and even then IPHONES are still sold for parts if they cannot be used normally. Nothing will stop the theft of phones. Touch ID only makes it easier for someone to login to there device.

  12. I won’t need touch ID or a flash or better camera BUT I would need more RAM in order to support future generations iOS.

    And the BEST thing Apple could do is offer an elegant microSD Card tray to expand iPad’s internal memoy.

    1. I believe that RAM requires constant power to maintain its contents, so the less RAM in use, the lower the power drain.
      So Apple optimizes code to minimize the need for extra RAM, reducing the need for a larger battery. Everything is a trade-off. If you’re going to run RAM hungry apps at higher clock speeds, you’re going to need a larger battery, and larger case to match.

      I don’t think it’s coincidental that so many other vendor’s phones are so much larger. They’re easier to design and build. Combine that with marketing to convince people bigger is better, and knocking out new models every few months is a cinch.

  13. And Tim, how can I change the tags of my books in iBooks? Did you forget this function too or are you all a bunch of illiterates at Apple ? (Oh, we love music and we love photos. Aren’t our kids cute?)

  14. Apple won’t put touch Id into other devices until they have got user feedback.

    Touch id is going to be a top tier product feature only and then eventually filter down the product line.

    Think iPad Pro and you now know what iPad will have touch id

  15. I have a 5S and the fp scanner is good but not perfect. There is a significant false negative scan rate which necessitates digit code input.
    Eventually all devices will likely have biometric keys but I doubt that the absence on the new iPads will limit the sales -personally I love the new mini and predict that it will sell out promptly

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