iPad 5 release date, news, rumours and price

Update: iPad 5 unveiled as ipad Air with slimmer design

iPad 5

It is official, the iPad 5 release date will be the 22nd October. This will bring the iPad release schedule back in line to annual releases  following last year’s launch of the iPad 4 and iPad mini just 7 months

after the iPad 3. 

With just mere hours left until Apple unveils its next-generation 9.7-inch slate, iPad fans are eagerly anticipating what new features the iPad 5 will bring.

The latest rumours suggest the iPad 5 will offer a slimmer, thinner form factor than the iPad 4, iPad mini-rivalling bezels and potentially an iPhone 5S fingerprint scanner too.

iPad 5 Release Date

Apple will most likely schedule an iPad 5 release date for around 10 days after tonight’s October 22 event. This would mean you’d be able to buy an iPad 5 from Friday, November 1. This follows the pattern laid out by the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C launch event and release date timeline.

However, there are rumours that if the iPad mini 2 launches with a Retina display as hoped, it may be delayed due to stock shortages for the smaller, hi-resolution display. This hopefully won’t impact the iPad 5 though.  

iPad release date – May 2010
iPad 2 release date – March 2011
iPad 3 release date – March 2012
iPad 4 and iPad mini  release date – November 2012
iPad 5 and iPad mini 2 release date – November 1 2013?

iPad 5 Dimensions, Design and Weight

Times

have changed and Apple’s once jealously guarded secrets are now

regularly leaked before the device has been officially unveiled.

Leaks regarding the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C

design and finger-print technology proved accurate and plenty of the

iPad 5 leaks that we have seen so far suggest they are accurate.

Particularly around the design and weight.

Rumours and leaks have

practically confirmed that that the iPad 5 will be redesigned in a form

factor that mirrors the iPad mini. Two speaker grilles sit at the

bottom of the leaked chassis, with the lightning connector situated

between them. 

So that means a thinner and much lighter 9.7-inch

tablet. Accessory maker SW-Box posted a video online purportedly

showing the iPad 5 shell beside the iPad mini and iPad 4.

iPad 5: 239mm high 169mm wide 7.2mm – Shell   92g
iPad 4: 241mm high 185mm wide 9.4mm – Shell 146g

iPad 5 dimensions

These

dimensions would make the iPad 5 16mm less wide and 2.2mm thinner than

the iPad 4. While the height remains almost identical it’s the width and

slim form factor that really make a difference when holding a tablet

for extended periods of time. That and the weight.

We don’t yet

know how much lighter the iPad 5 will be, but based on the 54g saving on

just the shell it should be much lighter. That’s no bad thing. The fact

is that at 652g, the iPad 4 is a bit of a porker and lagging well

behind the competition. Apple will want it to compete again and a

25%-33% improvement will see it drop to under the half kilo mark, 100g

less than the Google  Nexus 10 and on a par with the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 10.1.

It’s

hard to imagine where the rest of the weight saving will come from

without affecting the battery life or screen quality. A thinner and

lighter battery would make the biggest difference to the weight, as

would changes to the screen’s LED light bars and shaving down the

thickness of the glass.

Aside from being smaller and lighter

than its bigger brother, leaks suggest that the iPad 5 will have a more

translucent Apple logo, similar to those found on a MacBook.

Touch ID
iPhone 5S with touch ID sensor metal ring around the home button

iPad 5 Touch ID

One

of the boldest new additions to the iPhone range was the Touch ID

fingerprint scanner on the iPhone 5S. Used to unlock the phone with a

simple touch it seems increasingly likely the technology will be added

to the iPad 5.

Having lived with Touch ID on the iPhone 5S we

can attest that it works brilliantly and makes unlocking the device

quick and easy. The limit of 5 fingerprints might be an issue on a

device that that is often used by more than one person. We’d also love

to see profiles make an appearance on iOS 7 so you can provide access to specific apps and features to children, for example.
 

iPad 5 Inductive Smart Cover

Several

Apple patents from as early as 2011 suggest the iPad 5 could come with

an easily attachable and detachable cover. However that’s where the

similarities with the Microsoft Surface end. Apple’s patents point

towards the smart cover having its own rechargeable battery rather than a

keyboard. This would mean that it could act as an additional power

source using induction coils to wirelessly charge the iPad 5.

Generally

battery life on iPads is excellent so this may be a little overkill and

not as useful as a keyboard cover. The less exciting, and more likely,

cover announcement could follow the iPhone 5C and iPhone 5S and pair the

iPad 5 with a leather case made by Apple.

Another patent that

has been filed calls for “an audio codec with vibrator support” on its

tablets. The lack of haptic feedback and vibration mode is something a

few of TrustedReviews readers have complained about in the past so a

vibrate mode in the iPad 5 would be a welcome addition. 

iPad 5 Screen

Rumours

so far point to the iPad 5 having the same 9.7-inch screen as the 4.

There has been plenty of noise suggesting Apple is looking to Sharp’s

IGZO screen technology for the next generation of iPads.

Not

only could IGZO help improve battery life by being more efficient, it

would also allow true edge to edge flexible displays which would negate

the need for a bezel. IGZO can also support up to 500 pixels per inch.

That’s almost double the PPI of the iPad 4’s Retina display.

If

Apple could cram that many pixels into a 9.7 inch display it would

surpass the Google Nexus 10 with its 300PPI, however, the likelihood is

that the iPad 5 will keep the same 1536 x 2048 Retina display and not

yet use IGZO.

While we don’t think flexible displays on an iPad

are likely for a good few years there are benefits of having a flexible

display on a rigid device, primarily that flexible screens won’t break

or shatter anywhere near as easily as traditional glass ones. Samsung

has already announced that the Galaxy Note 3 will start shipping with a flexible display for this very reason.

Another

space saver that is almost certain to be included in the screen is a

film-based touch panel, as opposed to the glass panel on the iPad 4.

Film touch panels have traditionally been inferior to glass ones but

this has changed in recent years and the iPad mini already uses this

technology with few complaints.

iPad 5 Price

Unlikely

though it may sound the iPad has actually come down in price since the

first iteration was launched in 2010. However, the iPad 3 and iPad 4

were launched at the same price point for the entry level model and

we’re likely to see a similar pricing model here.

iPad Launch Prices:
iPad 1 – £500
iPad 2 – £445
iPad 3 – £399
iPad 4 – £399

So

for the Wi-Fi only models we’re looking at £399 for the basic 16GB,

£479 for the 32GB, £559 for 64Gb and £639 for 128GB. Add £100 to each of

these prices if you want 4G mobile internet with the iPad 5.

iPad 5 Specs

In

April, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo told MacRumors that the iPad

5 will use an Apple A7x quad-core system on chip processor. But hey,

this is the analyst that insisted we’d have the iPad 5 in April.

Aside

from the switch to the lightning connector, the iPad 4 has the A6x SoC

while the iPad 3 had the A5x. Apple claim the A6x has double the power

of its predecessor. That’s held true in a number of tests and is backed

up by the stats. The A6x uses the newer 32nms architecture as opposed to

the A5x’s 45mns. This has allowed Apple to up the clock speed from 1GHz

to 1.4GHz while keeping the chip cool.  

In BrowserMark, Sunspider, GeekBench and GLBenchmark 2.5 egypt classic the A6X doubles the performance of the A5x.

Will

the iPad 5 get an improved CPU? Apple has always improved the CPU with

upgrades to its mobile device product line so it’s highly likely that

the iPad 5 will feature a more powerful processor, and, based on the

iPhone 5S benchmarks, it’s likely to be as impressive an improvement as

it was from the iPad 3 to 4.

In terms of storage we expect the

128GB iPad 4 model to be matched by the iPad 5. 64GB and 32GB versions

are also very likely. Interestingly research conducted by Context into

iPad 2 sales suggests that more than 50% of customers purchase either

the top-of-the-range 64GB 3G model or the barebones Wi-Fi-only 16GB one.

If Apple can match the price of the iPad 4 16GB basic model with a 32GB

iPad 5 then we could see the end of 16GB iPads. 

iPad 5 64-bit Processor

The iPhone 5S has a 64-bit processor and it seems increasing likely that the iPad 5 will follow suit.

A

big-daddy version of the A7 chip on the 5S would mean the iPad 5 will

be significantly faster than the iPad 4 – perhaps as much as twice as

fast. The other benefit a 64-bit processor will bring is improved 3D

capabilities and the ability to quickly compute complex algorithms, for

example those used in the iPhone 5S’s Touch ID scanner.

Will a

64-bit processor on the iPad 5 make a big difference? Probably not

initially but once app developers have had the time to take advantage of

it we should see some impressive new apps.

If you want to know more about the 64-bit processor you can read 64-bit A7 Chip Explained

iPad 5 Gaming

A PS4 or Xbox One it isn’t but Apple is looking to get into gaming in a big way with the iPad 5.

An

upgraded A7x SoC processor would enable more intensive gaming

experiences but it’s iOS7 that will bring the biggest benefits to

gamers.  

Gaming peripheral support will be baked into iOS7 so

iPad 5 owners could conceivable navigate and play games on their tablet

using a controller. Apple hasn’t announced their own hand-held

controller but it’s fair to expect numerous third parties to manufacture

a variety of devices.

Does this mean that the iPad 5 will be

more than just a casual gaming machine? It will depend on app developers

as much as the power of the machine, but we hope so.  

iPad 5 iOS 7 and apps

The

iPad 5 will certainly be running Apple’s 7th iteration of its massively

redesigned mobile operating system. iOS 7 will feature new, flatter,

icons and a design led by Jonathan Ive, the man who was behind the

hardware design of the iPad, iPhone and the original iPod.

There’s

far more to iOS 7 than just an icon redesign. The Camera app has been

completely overhauled and will include Instagram style filters and

quicker and easier social sharing.

Taking a leaf out of

Android’s book, iOS 7 will also feature a turbo-charged notification bar

called the Apple Control Centre, letting you adjust a number of

settings.

Other features include smarter multitasking and a

new-look Safari. There are also reports that the iPad 5 will feature

haptic feedback, something Android tablets have had for a while.

In

addition Apple will be bundling Keynote, Pages, Numbers, iPhoto and

iMovie with every iPad 5, potentially making it an excellent

productivity tool.

iPad 5 Camera

If you’re one of those

people who like to take pics by holding your iPad aloft like one of the

Ten Commandments then you’ll be pleased to hear that a camera upgrade is

on the cards. We should see a jump from the 5-megapixel snapper in the

iPad 4 to an 8-megapixel one in the iPad 5. The 1.2-megapixel front

camera may also have a minor upgrade to 1.3-megapixel, or even

2-megapixel.

iPad cameras have always been slightly inferior to

their iPhone contemporaries which suggests it might get a similar

snapper to the one in the iPhone 5C. The case leaks show no sign of a

flash so it’s highly unlikely one will be included on the iPad 5, let

alone the True-Tone dual LED flash on the iPhone 5S.

Should I wait for the iPad 5 release or buy the iPad 4 now?

Rumours

have confirmed that the iPad 5 will be significantly smaller and

slimmer than the iPad 4 and will share more design aspects with the iPad

mini than it does with its predecessor. It looks like it will be a real

game-changer that may well claw back some of those punters who may have

jumped ship to Android.

The iPad 5 will have the same screen

size but be more compact than previous versions. One of the main

complaints about the iPad 4 is its weight so this is a very good thing.

With

only a few weeks before the new iPad 5 is announced it would be madness

to buy and iPad 4 now, unless you have a raft of accessories to go with

it from and older iPad.

iPad 5 – Should I upgrade?

If

you’ve got the iPad 4 then it’s probably not, unless the size and weight

of it are major issues. Aside from the new design the biggest changes

are likely to come with iOS 7, and the iPad 4 runs that just fine.

If the dimensions are different, as we’d expect, then that also means

you will need to fork out for a new keyboard case, if you already have

one that is.  

The story is a little different if you own the

iPad 2 or 3. Both these tablets have got the iOS 7 upgrade and in our tests we haven’t experienced any performance issues. Some of the more demanding apps on the market will challenge the iPad 2, but the iPad 3 fares better, thanks to its more powerful CPU and GPU.

If you’ve got the iPad 2 the other thing to consider is the significantly improved screen. The difference between the iPad 3,4 and 5 won’t be that great, but the jump from the iPad 2 to the Retina display of the iPad 5 may well be worth the upgrade alone.