A China Times report says supply chain sources indicate Apple could be planning to release a new fifth-generation iPad mini, along with two new entry-level iPad models in 2019.
The report, first spotted by Japanese blog Mac Otakara, claims that Apple is preparing to launch the so-called iPad mini 5 in the first half of next year in an attempt to halt a general decline in iPad sales, with mass production expected to start by the end of December.
The iPad mini, the smallest iPad in Apple’s lineup, hasn’t been updated since September 2015.
Parts of the report jibe with a prediction made in October by industry analyst Ming-Chi Kuo that Apple was working on a new version of the mini, which would include an upgraded processor and lower-cost display. He claimed the new device would be launched in 2018 or early in 2019.
However, DigiTimes had made a claim earlier in the year that Apple would not introduce a new version of the iPad mini, and even claimed Apple has “no further plan” for its smallest tablet.
The China Times report also says Apple will replace its current 9.7-inch entry-level iPad with a similarly-priced model featuring a 10-inch display and a narrower bezel. Apple is said to be launching two versions of the new iPad, in an effort to boost sales growth. No exact timeframe was mentioned for a launch of the new iPad models.