Earlier iPad Air 2, iPad Mini 3 Release Date On July 2014 with Minor Feature Upgrades; iPad Pro on Q1 2015 – Analyst

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By Erik Pineda | April 11, 2014 11:42 AM EST

Release date of the sixth-generation iPad, the second iPad Air that is, could be as early as July 2014 along with the third iPad Mini with both devices offering incremental bump ups from their immediate predecessors.

Reuters
An illustration picture shows application icons on an Apple Ipad tablet held by a woman in Bordeaux, Southwestern France, February 4, 2013.

From November last year, the iPad Air sequel is likely to land earlier this 2014, says KGI Securities analyst Ming-chi Kuo in a new research note published by MacRumors. The report is looking into a Q3 2014 rollout for the twin iOS slates, meaning waiting time theoretically starts between July and September of the same year.

"We think the upgraded iPad Air will be launched earlier in 2014 than the iPad Air was in 2013," Kuo wrote.

In the same note, the highly-credible Apple watcher backpedalled on his earlier assertion that the iPad Mini 3 will skip 2014, stressing that the tech giant has decided to focus instead on the reinvigorated original 9.7-inch iPad.

There will be two iPads after all in the current year, Kuo said in amending his earlier readings.

"We previously thought Apple would not release a new version of the iPad Mini this year, but we now think Apple will launch an upgraded version with same form factor," MacRumors reported the KGI analyst as saying.

It is likely too that the Mini 3 will be subjected to crucial design corrections as Kuo told Apple Insider that the modifications implemented by Apple with the Retina-toting iPad Mini 2 "proved unpopular among consumers."

"We think iPad Mini with Retina display made the same mistake, explaining why it's not selling as well as the previous generation of iPad Mini," Kuo wrote, hinting as well that Retina will remain as the strongest selling point of the third make.

But really, the biggest iPad changes to anticipate this year, according to BGR, amount to three things - "A8 processor, Touch ID (fingerprint recognition), and main camera resolution of 8MP."

These improvements are very specific for the smaller iPad in order to shore up its unexpected weak sales number when compared to the first iPad Mini as Kuo noted that Apple is hoping that a faster processor and fingerprint scanner would "boost shipments of iPad mini with Retina display."

In the same research note that exposed the flood of new products that Apple will unleash in 2014, Kuo insisted that there will only be two iPad builds to come out in the year.

The rumoured 12.9-inch iPad Pro will have to wait for a release date in the first quarter of 2015 as Kuo believes that the final make of the biggest iPad will be centred on mobile entertainment and productivity, adding that efforts of which are now underway.

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(Photo: Reuters / )
An illustration picture shows application icons on an Apple Ipad tablet held by a woman in Bordeaux, Southwestern France, February 4, 2013.
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