3 Confirmed iPad Air 2 Features on Q3 2014 Release Date? Touch ID, 8MP Rear Cam & A8 Chip

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By Erik Pineda | May 1, 2014 4:20 PM EST

Key upgrades for the iPad Air 2 on its 2014 release date started coming out in April, the latest of which is the Touch ID fingerprint scanner that Apple had unpacked in late 2013.

REUTERS/Robert Galbraith
Apple Inc CEO Tim Cook speaks about the new iPad Air and the iPad mini with Retnia display during an Apple event in San Francisco, California October 22, 2013.

Prior to that, some of the likely specs and features of the sixth-generation 9.7-inch iPad were hinted in a research note published last month by KGI Securities analyst Ming-chi Kuo, who is known for his spot-on predictions of earlier iPhones and iPads.

So below is what constitutes as the banner iPad Air 2 capabilities that according to Kuo are incremental bump ups from the 2013 build:

Touch ID

From Apple Insider, it appears that Apple is extending the fingerprint scanner that greeted millions of iPhone 5S buyers last year. This was revealed in iOS 7.1 codes that the same report said will surely find their way in iOS 8 - the software that experts said will power the 2014 iOS devices.

Pretty much, the same Touch ID framework that was used in the 5S will be in the second Air model and according to Apple Insider, the treatment is spread out in all the fresh iPad models to come out this year.

That means both the iPad Air 2 and the iPad Mini 3 will receive the biometric security feature. It is interesting to note that Kuo expects of an enhanced Touch ID feature in the iPhone 6, leaving it safe to assume that a better fingerprint reader will arrive with the upcoming iOS slates.

8MP shooter

Rumours have it that the next iPhone camera will stick with the 8MP sensor and Kuo is in agreement. He added, however, that the same shooting attributes will regale iPad buyers this year.

Expected feature upgrades for the iPad Air 2 cam are electronic image stabilisation (EMS) and larger camera pixel size, which according to new reports will be stuffed with the enhanced iPhone 6 shooter.

64-bit A8 chip

Like it did with the iPhone 5S and iPads last year, Apple is deploying 64-bit mobile computing this year and in the case of the iPhone 6, iPad Mini 3 and iPad Air 2 it will be the A8 chip processor, replacing last year's A7.

With the upgrade, the iPad Air 2 is expected to perform faster and better than the previous edition, ensuring as well that the device is ever more powerful despite its slimmer and lighter build.

The iPad Air 2 release date, basing on Kuo's fearless forecast, will happen earlier this year - the actual arrival likely between late September and early October 2014, which the analyst added also holds true for the third iPad Mini instalment.

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(Photo: REUTERS/Robert Galbraith / )
Apple Inc CEO Tim Cook speaks about the new iPad Air and the iPad mini with Retnia display during an Apple event in San Francisco, California October 22, 2013.
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