Digitimes shares what it believes to be Apple’s iPad roadmap for the rest of 2013. According to the site, a redesigned version of the full-sized iPad with a 9.7-inch display will go into production in July-August and begin shipping at some point in Q3 of this year. The report also shares that Apple will begin shipments with 5 million units during that quarter. As for what this new iPad model will include, the report repeats our previous claims of a thinner, lighter, iPad mini-like body with narrower bezels. Digitimes previously claimed that the new iPad could weigh in at under one pound (for comparison, the iPad mini weighs 0.68 pounds)…
As for the next-generation iPad mini, today’s report claims that Apple is seeking to release that product a few months after the fifth-generation iPad in order to retain interest in a redesigned full-sized iPad. The report claims that full-sized iPad sales have been somewhat affected, in its current generation, due to the near-simultaneous release of the original iPad mini last fall.
With the addition of the next-generation iPad, Apple’s 9.7-inch iPad shipments are expected to total at around eight million units in the third quarter and will have a chance to rise further in the fourth due to seasonality, the sources noted.
As for the second-generation iPad mini, some market watchers believe the delay is because 9.7-inch iPad sales were seriously impacted by iPad mini in 2012, and so to avoid the situation from happening again, Apple has turned its product focus for 2013 to the new 9.7-inch iPad.
However, some market watchers believe the delay is due to the supply chain being unable to meet the mass-production schedule.
Market watchers originally estimated Apple’s tablet shipments to reach 80-100 million units in 2013 with iPad mini accounting for 35% of the volume and 9.7-inch iPads 65%. However, with iPad mini’s volume production delayed to the fourth quarter, total iPad shipments for 2013 may be lower.
Another potential reason for an iPad mini delay has to do with Apple’s manufacturing partners’ ability to produce the tablets. Reports from earlier this year claimed that both of Apple’s iPad lines were set to receive updates in either March or April. Digitimes says that the next iPad mini could arrive by November, which would pin the launch approximately one year since the original device’s release and right before the major holidays.
An analyst, back in January, claimed that the new iPad mini would arrive following the next full-sized iPad. Digitimes is known for a “hit-or-miss” track record with Apple-related reports. However, the site has shared remarkably accurate information regarding the last few iPad updates. For instance, the site first claimed that Apple would release two 9.7-inch iPad models in 2012 (in addition to the iPad mini).
The next-generation iPad mini could receive a Retina display to match the resolution of its larger sibling, according to several recent reports. Other than a new display, chatter in regards to many other second-generation iPad mini features has not been present.