iPad Air to move to USB-C connectivity from next generation

Apple is reportedly planning to move the iPad Air to USB-C from its next generation.

According to a report from reliable supply chain insiders at Macotakara, the new iPad Air 4, which could be released over the summer or perhaps at WWDC 2020, will feature USB-C connectivity for the first time, helping Apple transition its iPads over to the USB-C standard.

The report suggests, however, that the iPad mini will retain a Lightning connector, for now, suggesting “Chinese supplier says iPad Air (4th generation) will have a specification with USB-C connector while iPad mini 8.5-inch will have a lightning connector.”

Macotakara has also suggested that the next-generation iPad Air has been based on the 11-inch iPad Pro, which could mean smaller bezels, a larger display, and no home button.

The third-generation iPad Air was based on the 10.5-inch iPad Pro, and so it would be a natural step to move the fourth-generation to the 11-inch iPad Pro, reducing the cost of development and manufacturing time, as Apple can use the same chassis and internals.

Last month, Ming-Chi Kuo suggested that Apple would drop a 10.8-inch iPad in the second half of the year, and then a smaller 9-inch iPad mini in the first half of 2021. The idea is to reposition the iPad brand towards consumers and offer devices at affordable price tags, emulating the success of the iPhone SE.

It had previously been suggested that the new iPad Air could be the first Apple device to adopt the new in-screen Touch ID technology, but it would also be possible for the firm to choose Face ID for authentication, unlocking more screen real estate and holding off on the Touch ID integration until the iPhone 13 in 2021, offering users a new incentive to upgrade.

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Everything Apple, every day. This post was written by an AppleMagazine newsroom writer.