Brian White, an analyst with Topeka Capital Markets, released a note over the weekend based on his observations at CES. In the note, which was seen by Business Insider, White said that ‘checks’ at the electronics show suggest that Apple will be releasing updated versions of their tablets as soon as March.
“Our checks at CES indicate Apple will release the iPad 5 and the second-generation iPad mini this March. The iPad 5 is expected to be lighter and thinner than the iPad 4 that was released in October, while the form factor of the iPad mini should be similar to the first generation iPad mini that debuted in October.”
These comments back up a report by Japanese blog Macotakara, which suggested a new, redesigned iPad would be released in March of this year. Many expressed doubt, as a March launch would make the latest iPad and iPad mini the second devices of their type in five months, but with more reports backing up the claim it’s now looking more likely.
Apple has historically used yearly cycles for releases of its iOS devices, but the recent and unexpected launch of the fourth-generation iPad came just seven months after that of the iPad 3. It’s unclear whether this was the first of many more regular hardware updates, or if Apple were simply updating all their mobile devices to include the Lightning connector. However, some rumours have suggested that Apple will now be updating their devices more regularly than every 12 months in order to keep up with the fast-moving mobile markets.