Apple Store goes down to get ready for pre-orders of the new iPads

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The online Apple Store is down as Apple readies the site to take pre-orders of the new iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3.

The iPad Air 2 is 18% thinner than the original Air, adds Touch ID, M8 motion-sensing chip and an AX8 processor that Apple says is 40% faster than the previous model. It also has camera and wifi improvements, and is available in gold …  Read more

What to expect (and not to expect) at Apple’s iPad/Mac event tomorrow

Tim Cook

It looks like Apple’s event tomorrow will focus on new iPad models as rumored, but there are bound to be a lot of announcements beyond just the new iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3. Below we’ve put together some of our expectations for other possibilities at the event, including likely announcements for new Macs, software updates and a couple of possible surprises you might not be expecting. Read more

KGI: 27″ Retina iMac ready to roll, 21″ next year, iPad Air 2 supply constrained, iPad minis to see minimal updates

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KGI has published a new research note indicating that the 27″ model of the new “Retina” iMac will begin shipping before the end of this year. However, according to the note, a 21-inch version which is currently in development will not be released until the beginning of 2015, probably alongside other products “early 2015″ like the Apple Watch and Photos for Mac.

With regards to the iPad Air 2, KGI says that constrained supplies are likely, with a possible initial shipment of only 7-9 million. Compare that to the original iPad Air, which kicked of sales with 12 million units. The iPad mini will be updated, but the changes will be more conservative than those coming to the Air. A 12.9″ iPad is also said to be in development, though no timeline seems to have been set for its release.

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Latest iPad Air 2 component leak shows A8X chip & 2GB RAM

A8X iPad

Following component leaks over the weekend purporting to show an A8X chip and Touch ID button destined for new iPads, additional photos re-published by blog apple.club.tw point to a closer look at the modified system-on-a-chip as well as what appears to be 2GB of RAM for application memory. The purported increase in RAM on the updated tablet would double that of the current generation iPad Air (and iPhone 6 for that matter) and make more more powerful multitasking on the device. Read more

Report claims next-gen iPad Air will double RAM amount to 2GB

iPad Air

A new report from Asian site TechNews.tw claims information from the Apply supply chain points to the next generation iPad Air doubling up on RAM from 1GB to 2GB. The additional memory would benefit system performance, especially during multitasking, when more memory-intesive tasks like browsing multiple websites in Safari and using other apps requires more RAM to function smoothly.

While most of the parts and component leaks out of the supply chain have centered around the next generation iPhone, which is expected to debut at an Apple event next month, the new report that the next generation iPad Air will double its memory follows a Bloomberg report earlier this month that new iPads with an anti-reflective coating over the display have entered production. Read more

Deep iPad discounts at Staples and Target: $199 16GB Minis ($100 off), Airs $130 off AC(starting at $369)

From 9to5Toys.com:

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Confirming our report from earlier this month, Target has revived its $199 iPad mini sale (Direct Link) this morning. At the time of posting it’s available both online at Target.com and at Target retail locations. That’s even $30 less than the retail price of top Android tablets Nexus 7 or Kindle HDX.

We’ve been told by a Target rep that quantities are limited and as such we highly recommend picking one up today. This deal is $100 better than retail and $20 less than Apple charges for a refurbished model. The non-Retina iPad mini features a 7.9-inch LED-backlit display, 10-hour battery life, and dual-core A5 chip.

Seperately, Staples is offering all WiFi-enabled iPad Airs (Space Gray or Silver) for $30 off (Direct link). Coupon code 79449 drops them another $100 yielding $369/$469/$569 on 16/32/64GB Wifi models.

As we’ve said before, these deals often sell out quick so if you are going to make a move, do so quickly.

Also, Apple is widely expected to update its iPads again in October but these prices are at or below what we expect current models to drop to so you are getting Apple’s holiday prices today. Read more

Bloomberg says new iPads (with anti-reflective coating) go into production

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While most of the Apple-watching world has its sights focused on the next iPhone, Apple has put next-generation versions of the iPad into production. That’s according to Bloomberg News, which says that the new full-sized iPad Air model will be announced later this quarter or early next quarter and that the new 7.9-inch model will hit the market by the end of the year:

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Apple ‘tentatively’ plans mid-September iPhone event as iOS 8 nears completion

iPhone 6

Apple is gearing up for its first major hardware and software launches of 2014. The Cupertino-based company is “tentatively” planning a keynote address in mid-September to announce the iPhone 6 and provide final details on iOS 8, according to sources briefed on the plans.

These people say that the second and third weeks of September are the mostly likely weeks for the event to be held, but they add that manufacturing uncertainties could alter the event’s timeframe. A decision has not been finalized, and sources made it clear that the plans are in flux.

The event will showcase at least the new iPhone 6 with a 4.7-inch screen, the sources say, but a final decision on debuting the larger, 5.5-inch “phablet” model at the event has not been made. The 4.7-inch variant of the new phone is farther along in both internal testing and manufacturing preparation, the sources added.

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Opinion: Will the iPad be left behind in the shift to larger iPhones?

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With Apple reporting lower-than-expected iPad sales for the second quarter in a row, it’s likely that Tim Cook will be once again be called on to reassure investors that the decline in year-on-year sales won’t continue indefinitely.

Cook has been very bullish on the iPad, despite the numbers, pointing especially to growing sales in the education sector and the opportunity for tablet growth in enterprise.

The penetration in business is low, it’s only 20 percent. If you looked at the penetration of notebooks in business it would be over 60 percent. We think there is a substantial upside in business.”

I think he’s right, especially with the IBM partnership. I mentioned in my opinion piece then that increasing penetration in enterprise could also help drive consumer migration from Android, as it gives people exposure to iOS devices. But the impact this has could well be offset by the iPhone 6 …  Read more

Will Apple also update the next iPads with rounded edges? (Poll)

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One of our favorite designers of Apple concepts, Martin Hajek, has put together this visual showing how a new iPad mini design might compare with the existing one if it were based on the design of the iPhone 6.

The existing design, top, has the familiar flat front and tapered, chamfered edge. The bottom one, Hajek’s concept, has the rounded edge now familiar from countless iPhone 6 renders, mockups and purported leaked parts

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New iPad Air with same design, 8MP rear camera, and more efficient A8 chip enters production this month

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Apple is reportedly set to begin production of its next-generation iPad Air this month with display components going into mass production in the middle of this month and components such as the processor and camera sensors going into production next month. The design of the sixth-generation full sized iPad will mimic that of the current model and the display resolution will stay at 2048 x 1536, according to ETNews.

The new iPad Air will sport a more advanced A8 processor, which sources previously noted focuses on efficiency and battery performance for the iPhone (likely for the iPad too):

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