Back on September 15th, Apple unveiled the fourth-generation iPad Air. At the time, Apple did not reveal a release date for the tablet. But next week, we could know exactly when the new slate will be available for purchase. One of the many Twitter tipsters who set up shop on the social media site disseminated a tweet on Friday
that says Apple will release this information during this Tuesday’s “Hi, Speed” new product event.
The new Apple iPad Air is reportedly being shipped to Apple Stores
The release of the fourth-generation iPad Air is notable because it will be powered by the same A14 Bionic chip that will be found in the 2020 iPhone 12 line. Produced by TSMC using the 5nm process node, this integrated circuit is equipped with 11.8 billion transistors compared to the 8.5 billion that is packed inside the A13 Bionic. With a transistor density of 171.3 million per square mm compared to approximately 100 million per square mm on the 7nm A13 Bionic, the new chip will provide more power while consuming less energy. Compared to the previous generation iPad Air (powered by the 7nm A12 Bionic), Apple says CPU performance will improve by 40%. The latest four-core GPU will deliver a 30% improvement in graphics performance over the third-generation model of the tablet.
Apple Stores have started receiving the fourth-gen iPad Air
The fourth-gen iPad Air also features a major design change. Gone is the Touch ID/Home button, replaced with a fingerprint scanner integrated with the tablet’s power button. This allowed Apple to reduce the size of the bezels providing users with an edge
-to-edge display. The device sports a 10.9-inch Liquid Retina display and carries a 12MP camera on the back. Adorning the front of the slate is a 7MP FaceTime camera. Apple claims that the battery will allow you to view videos and browse the web for up to ten hours while connected to a Wi-Fi network. Over a cellular connection, the battery will power up to nine hours of these activities between charges. And guess what! A USB-Type C port is included replacing the proprietary Apple Lightning port.
The new iPad Air will be priced starting at $599 for the 64GB Wi-Fi only model and $729 for the 64GB Wi-Fi + cellular model. Add $150 to compute the pricing of the 256GB models. Color options will be Space Gray, Rose Gold, Sky Blue, Silver, and Green.
Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman also turned to Twitter
to pass along some information about the fourth-gen iPad Air. Gurman’s tweet, sent yesterday, says that Apple Stores have started to receive some new products. The boxes are supposed to be opened at a later date. Gurman says that the containers probably contain the new iPad Air tablets pointing out that it is too early for the stores to receive the new iPhone 12 series.
Speaking of the upcoming 5G iPhone 12 line, a tipster said to have a good track record left some information late last week on China’s Weibo social media site. Pre-orders for the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro could begin on October 16th with the release of these two models exactly one week later. Pre-orders for the iPhone 12 mini are rumored to start on November 6th with a November 13th launch date. The top of the line iPhone 12 Pro Max could be launched on November 20th after a pre-order period starting on November 13th.
So the only thing that seems to be up in the air at this point is whether one of the iPhone 12 models or the fourth-generation iPad Air becomes the first device powered by a 5nm chipset. Later this year, the Huawei Mate 40 series is also expected to be released with a 5nm Kirin 9000 chipset under the hood. Next year, a pair of Samsung Exynos chips and the Snapdragon 875 will be produced by Samsung using its 5nm process node.