Fans of Apple’s iPad have long been waiting for the new iPad Pro release date, but so far the company has been quiet about it. However, the recently-released iOS 12.1 beta has now hinted at the new iPad Pro release date — and some of the device’s features as well.
iOS code suggests new iPad Pro release date
Apple’s iOS 12.1 beta, which was released yesterday, includes a code suggesting that the new iPad Pro release date will be sometime this fall. The code carries the string “iPad2018fall,” and it was discovered by Guilherme Rambo of 9to5Mac. Specifically, the code was found in the Setup app, which runs when a new device is set up.
There was no such string in the previous version of the app, although it included identifiers for the 2018 iPhones. It appears Apple will hold a separate event in October to announce the new iPad Pro models. Apple has historically hosted an event in October to announce new iPads.
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There have also been previous leaks suggesting that Apple will launch the new iPad Pro before the end of the year. It has been reported that the new iPad Pro will come with Face ID and an edge-to-edge, notched display. The iOS 12.1 beta also suggests the new iPad Pro will come with Apple’s TrueDepth camera system.
With the iOS 12.1 beta, Apple introduced a new feature called Memoji syncing. Currently, Memoji are only supported on the iPhone X and newer, but a Memoji syncing-feature suggests Apple will allow users to sync their characters between each device. It is easy to guess Apple will launch a new iPad with a TrueDepth camera system that supports Memoji.
Although Memoji syncing would also mean support for users with two iPhones, the feature makes more sense for users with an iPhone and iPad. Additionally, the iOS 12.1 beta adds support for the face-unlocking technology when the device is in landscape mode. This could prove a useful addition for the tablets when used with keyboard accessories.
More hints about Face ID coming to the iPad were noticed by some developers, who saw it in the iOS 12 betas for the iPad. Apple also reportedly made way for an iPhone X-style notch by moving the iPad’s clock from the center to the top of the device.
What to expect from the new iPad Pro
Apple has already released one new iPad this year, but it was more of an iterative update. However, the new iPad Pro is expected to be a complete overhaul from the previous versions. Apart from Face ID, the new iPad Pro will likely come with USB-C connectivity instead of Lightning, according to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. USB-C connectivity would also ensure the new iPad supports USB-C peripherals and docks, making it a more likely replacement for laptops.
“Face ID has support for landscape orientation (presumably for iPad only), and iOS 12.1 seems to care a lot more about whether an external display is connected (perhaps due to iPad USB-C rumors; it won’t have the Lighting HDMI adapter as an intermediary for video-out),” tweeted developer Steven Troughton-Smith.
As far as performance, the new iPad Pro will probably come with a faster processor, like with almost every upgrade cycle. Reports suggest the new iPad Pros will be powered by an A11 or A11X chipset. The 2017 iPhones run on the A11 chip.
Other reports suggest the new iPad Pro will follow the iPhones in terms of design, i.e., no Home button, no headphone jack and slim bezels. There are also reports claiming the new model will retain the same 12.9- and 10.5-inch screen sizes.
With most of the new features already known, although not confirmed, iPad fans are now anxiously waiting for the new iPad Pro release date. The iPad Pro has been Apple’s most irregular lineup, considering the fact that over the last three years, the company has released new iPad Pros in November, March and June. This time, it appears the new iPad Pro will be announced in October.
Apple’s first-gen 12.9-inch iPad Pro was launched in September 2015, while the 9.7-inch variant was announced in March 2016. The second-generation iPad Pro was revealed at WWDC in June 2017, but Apple held a special event in October 2014 to announce the iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3.