Apple will unveil brand new iPad models on Tuesday if recent rumors are to be believed. All but the iPad Pro lines should receive specs upgrades this week. Apple should unveil the iPad 11, iPad mini 7, and iPad Air 6. I said recently that the iPad mini 7 might be the best choice for me. It so happens that I’m looking for an iPad right now.
I let my imagination run wild, hoping that the A17 Pro chip that Apple announced during the iPhone 15 event last month would also power the iPad mini 7. But I was also aware that’s wishful thinking. The better choice for this tablet is the A16 Bionic that powers the iPhone 14 Pro models. A brand new leak indicates the A16 is the System-on-Chip (SoC) that Apple will use inside the 2023 iPad mini generation.
Most recently, the leaker claimed the iPad mini 7 will deliver a fix to the “jelly scrolling” issue that Apple says is a non-issue.
Some iPad mini 6 owners discovered a refresh issue when holding the iPad in portrait orientation. We’re looking at a delay between the lines of pixels at the top and bottom of the screen that appears during the refresh. Not all users might notice the jelly effect. Apple said it’s a normal behavior for LCD screens that refresh line by line.
The leaker said Apple would fix the jelly scrolling effect by rotating the screen assembly. Will this lead to similar jelly effects in landscape mode? It’s too early to tell.
More interestingly, Instant Digital detailed three other upgrades coming to the iPad mini 7. The most important one concerns the SoC.
Apple will reportedly go for the A16 Bionic chip. It might not be the A17 Pro, but it should be a welcome upgrade over the A15 Bionic in the iPad mini 6. We’re looking at 10% speed gains and 50% GPU improvement. The latter, combined with improved efficiency, might make the iPad mini 7 a more compelling choice for buyers looking for a new iPad this year.
On that note, it’ll be interesting to see what chip upgrade the iPad 11 gets since this is supposed to be an entry-level iPad. Then again, the iPad mini starts at $499, a price point Apple will hopefully keep in place for the 7th-gen model.
The price is a big reason why the A17 Pro chip upgrade is out of the question for the iPad mini 7. An iPhone 15 Pro Max bill of materials estimate indicated the A17 Pro is 27% more expensive than the A16 Bionic. Also, Apple might want to dedicate all the A17 Pro supply it can make to the iPhone 15 Pros.
Since I’ve been using the iPhone 14 Pro for over a year, I’ll say the A16 Bionic is doing great. I’m probably not even taking advantage of its maximum potential. Therefore, it should also offer a similarly fast experience on the iPad mini 7.
The leaker also pointed out two additional iPad mini 7 upgrades over last year’s model. The iPad will get a new camera system, although camera specs have not leaked. As MacRumors points out, the iPad mini 6 features the same 12-megapixel rear camera and 12-megapixel selfie camera as the other iPads in Apple’s lineup.
Finally, Apple will sell the iPad mini 7 in new color options. But, again, it’s unclear what these colors will be. The current model comes in Space Gray, Starlight, Pink, and Purple.
I’m secretly hoping for a bump in storage, as the iPad mini still comes with just 64GB of flash memory. But there’s no indication that will happen.