Apple is expected to announce its fifth-generation 9.7-inch iPad in September as scheduled, while its next-generation iPad mini reportedly may receive further upgrades in specifications, according to sources from the upstream supply chain.
In addition to the Retina Display, the new tablet features a slimmer bezel design to allow a bigger viewing area, while the number of LED tubes used for the device has been reduced from two to one, and battery longevity is also improved.
Digitimes goes on to add that the specs for the next iPad Mini are still up in the air. It might or might not have a Retina Display, but if it does then the release date might be pushed back until the fourth quarter. And if the new iPad Mini doesn't have a Retina Display, many Android tablet makers will say thanks and many bloggers will point and snicker.
If the new iPad does have the bezel mentioned in this rumor, it could look something like this mockup one graphic artist created:
I'm going to go ahead and call the rumor about the new iPad as probably true. It's not that I trust Digitimes, but I will note that there was no iPad launch this Spring. If Apple is going to keep with their current yearly release schedule, the new hardware will have to debut sometime this Fall.
And the other reason I tend to believe this rumor is that schematics for what was claimed to be the new iPad leaked a couple weeks ago. The schematics look like the device described by Digitimes, potentially making it one of the first of the many leaks we can expect to see.
Also. I find the rumored thinner bezel to be quite plausible. There's no practical reason for Apple to choose one bezel design over the other, but I expect Apple to change the design of the new 9.7" iPad so it looked more like the iPhone and iPad Mini. It makes sense for Apple to unify the designs of the 2 tablets and their smartphone.
But even though I tend to believe this rumor, I still plan to apply my usual rule of thumb for new Apple products. I don't completely believe the rumors until after a half dozen leaked parts, schematics, and other tangible evidence shows up. That is part of the reason why I am only half convinced that the iWatch exists (the recently filed trademarks are compelling).