Apple has started production on two new iPad versions to be released this year, according to published reports. Apple’s new tablet models could be on the market as soon as the end of September, or possibly October.
The launch comes after the iPad suffered consecutive quarters of year-on-year declines in sales. The new iPad and iPad mini models are expected to retain their current 9.7-inch and 7.9-inch screens, respectively, according to a report by Bloomberg.
All the Better To Read With
The new models could be easier to read: they are said to come with a new anti-glare coating for the screens that could allow users to read text even in direct sunlight. That could help make the devices more competitive with consumers looking for an electronic reader they can take with them to the beach. Amazon’s Kindle device, for example, has had a similar anti-glare coating for years.
The iPad, meanwhile, could sport a new, slimmer form. Purported photos of the new model seem to indicate a thinner design. It may also come with a touch identification fingerprint reader, similar to the one found on the iPhone 5s.
iPhone Finally Coming to the Big Screen
Apple is also rumored to be launching the much-awaited iPhone 6 on September 9. One of the most talked-about features rumored for the new iPhone are the screen sizes of the new models. The first model is purported to be coming in at 4.7 inches. Although not large by competitor standards (Samsung phones have had larger screens since the Galaxy S3 launched in 2012), the increased size would still represent a big step up from the 4-inch screens sported by the iPhone 5 and 5s.
But Apple apparently has an even bigger model in the works, with the larger version to come with a 5.5-inch screen. That size is even bigger than the 5.1-inch screen of the Galaxy S5. Almost half of all smartphones priced at more than $500 come with a 5-inch or larger screens, and the iPhone would allow Apple to finally join their ranks. The screens are reportedly made of sapphire glass for increased durability.
Faster Chip, Better Wi-Fi
The new phones are also rumored to come with the new 2.0 GHz A8 chip. That would represent a step up from the 1.3 GHz A7 chips running on the iPhone 5 and 5s models. The chip upgrade should result in noticeably faster rendering times for graphics.
They will also run on the faster 802.11ac Wi-Fi protocol. Apple is also said to be working on a Wi-Fi chip of its own that could potentially replace the one currently suppled by Broadcom. However, this technology is said to still be in the development stage and will not be available for the September release. A space on the phone has also been reserved for a near field communication chip that would allow users to use their phones as electronic payment devices.