What to expect amid the bevy of conflicting iPad

In his email communication on Sunday, Mark Gurman of Bloomberg initially stated that iPad refreshes were forthcoming before the year's end. However, he later revised his statement, suggesting that while newer models of the entry-level iPad, iPad Air, and iPad mini were in development with enhanced chips, he did not believe that any significant updates were imminent.

What to expect amid the bevy of conflicting iPad

Subsequently, Supercharged published an article on Monday citing insider sources familiar with Apple's media plans. According to these sources, Apple intended to release updated versions of the iPad Air, iPad mini, and iPad as early as Tuesday, October 17. Allegedly, the iPad Air would receive an upgrade from the M1 chip to the M2, the iPad mini would transition from the A15 to the A16 chip, and the iPad would also experience an improvement, likely from the A14 to the A16 chip. However, the report did not specify this last chip upgrade.

An initial rumor had circulated suggesting that Apple planned to introduce a new display controller to address the "jelly scrolling" problem reported by some users of the current iPad mini model. Supercharged indicated that these changes would constitute the only modifications to the new iPads, which would be announced through press releases and media briefings rather than a keynote event. It should be noted that previous Apple product updates, such as the M2 Pro and M2 Max MacBook Pro, were similarly unveiled via this alternative method.

9to5Mac initially supported Supercharged's claims, but later retracted their support and instead indicated that they had received information concerning a new version of the Apple Pencil. This support came from the Japanese website Macotakara, which reported the upcoming release of the Pencil 3 rather than an iPad update. The Pencil 3 was reported to feature various pointer attachments suited for different use cases, such as painting or drawing.

Both Gurman and 9to5Mac have accurately predicted some of Apple's past developments, although occasionally their understanding of specific details or timelines has been imperfect. While some sources suggest that iPad refreshes are slated for this week and others deny it, it is not inconceivable to anticipate updates to the iPad Air, iPad mini, and iPad alongside a Pencil refresh.

Further investigation reveals that it is unlikely for Apple to unveil a new Pencil separately from a new iPad launch. When the first-generation Pencil was introduced, it coincided with the first iPad Pro release, and the second-generation Pencil accompanied the third-generation iPad Pro. Since the Air and mini already support the second-generation Pencil, refreshing both devices could serve as an appropriate occasion to debut a new Pencil. This interpretation does not necessarily contradict Gurman's initial prediction since he stated that updates of significant importance were not imminent. Chip upgrades and a new Pencil would not be considered groundbreaking for most iPad users.

Regardless, the iPad Air and iPad mini have not undergone updates for a considerable period and are due for a refresh. Apple historically introduces new products around this time of year when the initial excitement surrounding the new iPhones and Watches begins to subside. In conclusion, while we must await further developments, it appears plausible that something of mild interest may transpire in the realm of iPads within the next few days.

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