Apple Rumored To Ship Three New iPad Pros In Spring 2017

The rumor mill is running once again. This time, eyes are on the next iPad — or rather, the next set of iPads. In fact, these iPads are supposed to be a new lineup of iPad Pros.

According to a report by Japanese site Mac Otakara, Apple is expected to ship three new iPad Pros in the spring of 2017. These new iPads include the regular 12.9-inch model, as well as two new size options: a 7.9-inch and a 10.1-inch model. That doesn’t seem to be the only upgrade for Apple’s iPad Pros. It seems these new models get some hardware improvements as well.

The report states that the 12.9-inch iPad Pro will get an iSight camera that outputs 12 million pixels, the True Tone flash that has been featured on every iteration of iPhone since the introduction of the iPhone 5S back in 2013, and a “True Tone display correspondence to Display P3 will be adopted.”

The current, smaller iPad Pro — the 9.7-inch model — will see a slight screen increase, jumping to 10.1-inches. This will change the dimensions slightly by 1-cm in length and 0.5-mm in width. So it gets just a teeny bit longer and just a teeny bit wider. Though the report doesn’t explicitly state, it can be inferred that this iPad Pro will see the same hardware upgrades as the 12.9-inch model.

Lastly, the iPad Mini 4 is supposed to renew as an iPad Pro. It will retain the same 7.9-inch display size, but will see some new internal updates. It’s expected to receive the Smart Connector, the four speaker output that the current iPad Pros use — though it’s unknown whether these will be the same stereo speakers used in the current iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus — and the same iSight camera, True Tone flash, and True Tone display as the expected 12.9-inch iPad Pro. If Apple is going to place this iPad in the Pro lineup, perhaps they’ll call it the iPad Mini Pro instead of the iPad Min 5.

Additionally, the entire lineup will change from the dual microphone setup to a quad microphone setup. And interestingly, these iPads are going to retain the 3.5-mm headphone jack, indicating that Apple isn’t ready to kill off the audio jack just yet — the iPhone is, maybe, just an introduction to the world of wireless technology.

This report claims their information comes from “well-placed sources,” though Mac Otakara doesn’t explicitly name their sources. According to Mac Rumors, “Mac Otakara does not have a perfect track record with Apple rumors, but its sources have proven accurate on multiple occasions in the past.” They state that Mac Otakara‘s post back in November of 2015 hinted at Apple removing the headphone jack — which evidently came true. And another post seemed to confirm the rumored iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus “Jet Black” color option. The site also “accurately leaked the iPhone 7’s naming scheme, pressure-sensitive Home button, and larger earpiece cutout,” according to Mac Rumors. Perhaps inaccurate in the past, it now seems Mac Otakara may be the site to keep an eye on in terms of Apple leaks and rumors.

The first iPad Pro was introduced in November of 2015, and was initially met with a bit of skepticism: an iPad that featured a 12.9-inch display seemed awkward to some. However, after long usage, the iPad Pro become loved ubiquitously by tech critics and fans alike. In March, 2016, just four months after the launch of the iPad Pro, Apple introduced a new, smaller 9.7-inch iPad Pro. This iPad Pro curbed those weary of a larger iPad Pro, delivering the same power and features as its bigger counterpart, but in a significantly smaller chasis.

Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide product marketing, talks about the new iPad Pro
[Image by Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP Images]

Given Apple’s track record, the iPad Pro may be due for a refresh. This trio of iPad Pros are expected to launch in the spring of next year, but that could be anywhere between March and June.

[Featured Image by Eric Risberg/AP Images]