Apple fans may need to wait until late 2023 or early 2024 for the next iteration of the compact iPad Mini tablet, according to revered Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. But when it does arrive, the 7th generation iPad Mini looks to bring some of the biggest changes.
Headlining the upcoming refresh is an all-new A16 Bionic processor or M1 Chipset. Moving from the A15 puts the iPad Mini’s performance on par with the best of Cupertino for serious multitasking, intensive gaming, and productivity. More power plus ongoing iPadOS updates should translate to an exceptionally long usable lifespan as well.
Matching the processing punch, Kuo reports upgraded front and rear camera modules are also slated for the Mini 7. Details remain uncertain, but fans can likely expect to see improvements to the current 12MP main and 12MP Ultra Wide FaceTime HD shooters. An iPhone 15-inspired camera array could be used to really modernize the photography capabilities.
New color options are strongly rumored to be in the cards too, complementing existing choices like Space Gray, Pink, Purple, and Starlight.
The iPad Mini last saw new colors added back in 2019. Vibrant hues like those introduced for the 5th gen iPad Air would make an excellent addition.
Less exciting but still useful changes tipped include the adoption of Wi-Fi 6E for faster wireless speeds, an upgrade to Bluetooth 5.3 for accessories and peripherals, and some modest improvements to the display.
That last one aims to mitigate an issue some users see with jagged or uneven scrolling in portrait mode.
Despite chatter about a folding display iPad down the road, Ming-Chi Kuo believes a foldable model won’t replace the iPad Mini line due to prohibitively higher costs.
This suggests the 7th gen will retain largely the same physical design as today’s iPad Mini 6th generation.
That translates to an 8.3” edge-to-edge Liquid Retina screen flanked by slim bezels and still sporting the Touch ID power button. Expect to still see USB-C instead of Lightning for charging and syncing purposes too.
Apple Pencil 2 support, compatibility with Magic Keyboard and Smart Keyboard Folio cases, excellent battery life, and more also look to carry over to the next iteration.
Storage capacity for iPad Mini 7 remains to be seen. While not confirmed, Kuo’s rumors indicate it could jump to a base of 128GB rather than paltry 64GB found in the entry-level 6th generation.
We’ll have to wait and see if other higher-end storage tiers expand above the current 256GB as well.
Of course, exact pricing and availability details won’t emerge for quite some time. But past iPad Mini launches provide clues on what to expect.
Barring any radical changes, Apple will likely stick close to the existing $499- $549starting price point.
And based on Kuo’s predictions, consumers shouldn’t expect units to ship before late 2023 at the very earliest, with mass production slated for early the following year.
Whenever it does hit store shelves though, the iPad Mini 7 looks ready to usher in the most significant overhaul seen by Apple’s smallest slate since its major redesign back in 2021.
For fans of its ultra-portable yet still powerful form factor, it’ll be well worth the wait.
Expected Specifications of iPad Mini 7 2024
|A16 Bionic chip or M-series chip (unlikely due to cost), speed bump from current A15
|No details, but likely at least 4GB to match current model
|128GB or 256GB, upgraded from current 64GB and 256GB options
|8.3-inch 2,266 x 1,488 Liquid Retina LCD, no ProMotion expected
|Possible upgrade from current 12MP Ultra Wide
|Possible upgrade from current 12MP Wide camera
|Same overall design with Touch ID power button and USB-C port
|Same as current model: 195.4 x 134.8 x 6.3mm
|Same as current model: 293 grams
|Potential for new colors like sky blue or silver
|Wi-Fi 6E, Bluetooth 5.3 upgrades
|Expected to remain for cellular models
|Stereo sound expected to remain
|No details, but may add accelerometer for Magic Keyboard
|No details, but efficiency gains very likely from new chip