“One of the more disappointing aspects of Apple’s December quarter earnings report was the nearly 25% y/y decline in iPad unit shipments. Apple has clearly needed to do more than introduce the iPad Pro,” Mark Hibben writes for Seeking Alpha. “Apple’s next-gen iPad Air will be part this effort.”
“Only, it won’t be called iPad Air 3, if rumors are correct. Instead, it will be identified as an iPad Pro model, but with a 9.7-inch screen,” Hibben writes. “Whatever the device is to be called, it will be considerably beefed up from the iPad Air 2. Rumor has it that it will receive the A9x SOC from the iPad Pro, and feature support for a detachable keyboard and Apple Pencil as well.”
“The rumor indicates that Apple is moving out fairly aggressively to enhance the utility of iPad. There have been rumors for some time of a March event, and it’s now thought that the new iPad will make its debut then,” Hibben writes. “Why the lag time between the large-sized iPad Pro and this new mid-sized version? I really think it was just due to A9x availability. The A9x is thought to be fabricated exclusively by TSMC (NYSE:TSM). TSMC was still ramping their 16nm FinFET process as of the end of the year, and there just weren’t enough of the A9x processors to go around.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: That 9.7-inch iPad Pro is quickly going to become the best-selling iPad model with millions of units in users hands by WWDC 2016 and millions of Apple Pencils sold to accompany them at $99 a pop.