The new Apple iPad might skip the M3 altogether

Apple’s “Let Loose” event next week promises a flurry of exciting announcements. While new iPad Pro models and accessories are a given, a reliable source hints at a surprising upgrade – the M4 chip could be making its debut.

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Mark Gurman, a well-respected Apple reporter, claims in his latest Power On newsletter that Apple might leapfrog the M3 entirely for its 2024 iPad lineup. Instead, these iPads could boast the next-generation M4 chipset, offering a significant jump in processing power. This news comes just six months after the M3’s introduction with late 2023 MacBook Pros.

The M4’s key highlight is expected to be a powerful new neural engine, propelling on-device AI capabilities. Apple has been playing catch-up in the AI race, but this could change. Gurman suggests Apple might unveil AI-focused features for iPhones with iOS 18 at WWDC, while simultaneously launching M4-powered iPads for a powerful AI one-two punch. He even speculates that these iPads could be Apple’s first “truly AI-powered devices.”

Beyond the chip, design changes are also rumoured. The new iPad Pro models could feature a slimmer profile, a repositioned FaceTime camera, and, most notably, the first-ever OLED displays for iPads. According to a report by DSC, these OLED displays will be top-of-the-line, offering superior brightness, better battery life, and long lifespans.

Apple Pencil enthusiasts are also in for a treat. Gurman suggests a new Apple Pencil with a built-in taptic engine, providing subtle feedback during specific actions like brush changes. This could be linked to potential “squeeze” gesture support for the new Pencil.

The event will also likely see the unveiling of a new 12.9-inch iPad Air and a refreshed Magic Keyboard. With the event just a week away, the wait for Apple’s latest innovations won’t be long.