Apple iPad Air 2 release date, specification and price
Updated: The iPad Air is probably the best tablet in the world right now so we’re understandably excited at the prospect of the iPad Air 2. On the other hand Apple will have its work cut out in making any meaningful improvements to its already near-perfect slate.
Whether the Cupertino company will be up to the challenge remains to be seen, but read on to get some idea of what we might be in for, along with when it might be available and what it might cost.
For the most part Apple releases one full sized iPad each year and the iPad Air came out back in November, so it’s likely that the iPad Air 2 will come out this November. More specifically probably the beginning of November.
So far there haven’t been many leaks regarding the specs of the iPad Air 2, but by the sounds of things it won’t be dramatically different from the iPad Air.
Sources speaking to ETNews claimed that the slate will be in line for a new A8 processor, however while that’s likely to improve its power the A8 chip is rumoured to be more focused on improving efficiency and battery life. That’s fine with us, the iPad Air is already plenty powerful and a longer battery life is always useful.
The same sources claimed that the iPad Air 2 will keep the same 9.7 inch 2048 x 1536 display as its predecessors, but that its main camera will be boosted to 8 megapixels and its front facing camera will be increased to 1.5 megapixels.
A series of images purportedly showing the slate have also emerged on nowhereelse.fr. Going by them it looks like the iPad Air 2 will have a very similar design to the iPad Air, however the design of the buttons has changed slightly and it appears to have Touch ID baked into the home button.
Since then an image has been tweeted by a nowhereelse.fr staffer again highlighting what appears to be Touch ID in the home button.
Some mock ups of the iPad Air 2 have also appeared on ASCII Plus alongside an original iPad Air and while it’s questionable how legitimate these are there are some interesting features. For one thing the new slate appears a little slimmer than the 7.5mm thin iPad Air.
One of the images also shows that there’s no slide switch on the side of the iPad Air 2. On the iPad Air this can be used as a quick way to either mute the device or lock the rotation of the screen and it seems an odd thing to get rid of, but with Control Centre making it easier to quickly do things like that maybe Apple doesn’t feel the need for it any more.
Yet another leak, this time from Weibo, shows what is supposedly the iPad Air 2’s back cover. It looks a lot like the cover of the original iPad Air but with a few minor differences. For one thing the volume buttons appear not to stick out and the look of the speaker grilles is slightly different.
Moving away from images, sources have told Bloomberg that the iPad Air 2 will have a new anti-glare coating on the screen, which could make it less reflective and easier to read, particularly in bright sunlight.
There’s also talk from China Times that not only will the Touch ID sensor be making a return, but that it will be getting a little bit better, thanks to a more durable sensor module.
There’s no word on what the iPad Air 2 will sell for yet but it’s likely to be at least as expensive as previous models in the line, so expect it to cost at least £400 for a 16GB Wi-Fi only model, with prices going up dramatically for more storage or for 3G and 4G support.
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