Apple is said to be working on two new iPads for 2019 that will borrow the thin bezel design first seen with the 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro at the end of October. China Times reported last week that Apple is working on iPad mini 5 as successor to iPad mini 4 and a new 10-inch iPad that could replace the 9.7-inch iPad announced at the education event early this year. Now, first images depicting what could be the iPad mini 5 have surfaced online, suggesting Apple is indeed working on a successor to iPad mini 4, which was announced in September of 2015.
Slashleaks shared images of what looks like a case for the new iPad mini 5 on Twitter. If these images end up becoming real then we are looking at the smaller iPad getting a camera configuration similar to that of the new iPad Pro. The case shows an oblong camera cutout that matches the layout of iPad Pro’s camera configuration. This means that the iPad mini 5 could get a flash component to go along with its camera. Another major design change is that the microphone is being moved to the center of the device, it is not clear whether it will make the device any less sturdier in terms of build quality.
— /LEAKS (@Slashleaks) 24 December 2018
The alleged case also shows a cutout for what looks like the headphone jack, which could be a big surprise. Apple has already dropped headphone jack from all the devices that have launched since iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus in 2016. The cutout is placed in the top right corner or top left when you look at the front side of the device. There is another cutout in the middle of the device, which points at Apple bringing its smart connector to the smaller version of its tablet this year.
Watch: Apple iPad Pro 2018 First Look
The iPad mini 5 case leak does not offer anything specific about the device itself. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, who has the most reliable track record with Apple leaks, had predicted that the iPad mini 5 will arrive in either late 2018 or early 2019. The China Times report claims the device will launch during the first quarter of 2019.
The report also added that Apple will stick to low price for the mini iPad and it might miss out on liquid Retina display and Face ID support. Apple sells the iPad mini 4 only in 128GB storage model for $399, which is $70 more than the 32GB variant of 9.7-inch iPad. The new iPad mini 5 is tipped to be priced closer to $300 (around Rs 21,000) when it goes on sale.