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The fifth-generation iPad Air will feature a range of significantly upgraded internals, according to an unverified but increasingly plausible report coming out of Asia.

iPad-Air-Feature-2.jpg

According to a post from the account "yeux1122" on the Korean blog Naver, the fifth-generation iPad Air will feature the M1 chip. As a result, the iPad Air is also destined to be paired with 8GB of memory, the post claims.

The new iPad Air is also rumored to start with 128GB of storage, up from the 64GB base storage currently available with the fourth-generation iPad Air. The fifth-generation iPad Air will purportedly start at $599, the same starting price as the current model, despite offering double the amount of base storage.

The account previously said that Apple was planning to launch a new iPad mini model with an 8.7-inch display and a chassis that has an increased width and reduced height compared to the fifth-generation iPad mini in the second half of 2021. While the display size claim was inaccurate, with the sixth-generation iPad mini actually featuring an 8.3-inch display, the chassis rumor and launch timeframe proved to be correct.

Previous rumors about the ‌iPad Air‌ have suggested that it will be very similar to the iPad mini, featuring the A15 Bionic chip and 5G connectivity. Adding the ‌M1‌ to the ‌iPad Air‌ would make it very similar to the more expensive, top-of-the-line ‌iPad Pro‌, and if Apple does opt to do so, ProMotion display technology (with mini-LED in the 12.9-inch model) and the LiDAR camera would become the main differences between the ‌iPad Air‌ and the ‌iPad Pro‌ lines.

The ‌M1‌ chip features a 8-core CPU and a 7 to 8-core GPU, and comparatively, the A15 chip has a 6-core CPU and 5-core GPU, so the ‌M1‌ does offer some performance improvements over the A-series chips.

Yesterday, 9to5Mac exclusively reported that the fifth-generation iPad Air will feature the M1 chip, but it is not clear if that is independently-sourced information or simply derived from this Naver blog post.

The new iPad Air is expected to be announced at Apple's "Peek Performance" event, which will start at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time today, so we don't have long before we learn exactly what chip Apple is adding to the iPad Air. We'll have coverage here at MacRumors.com and on our MacRumorsLive Twitter account.

Article Link: iPad Air 5 Rumored to Feature M1 Chip, 8GB RAM, and 128GB Base Storage
 
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SamRyouji

macrumors regular
Jun 1, 2016
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It's too good to be true.
If it's true, key difference between Air 5 and Pro 2021 will be just ProMotion, Quad Speaker, Thunderbolt port and Dual Camera + LiDAR. All feature that most of people will overlook.

But let's see what Apple will bring to us here. After all, they're the company full of surprises.
 

ChromeCloud

macrumors 6502
Jun 21, 2009
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I think the leak is wrong. Somebody leaked that the new iPad Air will have 8GB of RAM and whoever reported this assumed it has to be M1.

I bet it will be A16 instead. We already know from rumors that the iPhone 14 Pro will have 8GB of RAM, so an A16 iPad Air with 8GB of RAM is possible.
 
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oofio2461

macrumors member
Sep 20, 2021
79
125
Alright, finally something to replace my Ipad Air 1! I didn't upgrade since it was still running well and wasn't slow, even when support ended for it. (Which I didn't care about.) But since that version's app store is slowly shutting down, this will be my replacement for the 9-year-old Ipad. I think that this Ipad is an amazing deal for an Ipad considering it has the M1 chip and better ram and storage.
 

snipr125

macrumors 65816
Oct 17, 2015
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This is the second article saying that the Ipad Air 5th gen will be upgraded up to an M1 chip, so there must be some truth. The ipad air 4 debuted the 5nm A14 chip, before the iphone 12 and that was a bit of a shock also.

This news and the new iphone SE getting better battery life along with A15, 4Gb RAM and ceramic shield means im probably getting both of these!
 

chucker23n1

macrumors 604
Dec 7, 2014
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OK, but why? It would make more sense to me for the iPad Air to be the mini's bigger brother. (It would also make more sense to me for them to be upgraded in tandem.)

If the Air gets an M1, 1) I'm not sure what problem that solves, and 2) that makes the iPads Pro barely an upgrade. Better camera (but few people use LiDAR), Thunderbolt (barely useful on iPad), ProMotion, mini-LED (12-inch only!), better speakers. That's it. Very weird positioning.

Unless the Pro gets a big upgrade. But it kind of already did last year, so probably not?
 

SW3029

macrumors regular
Sep 22, 2019
248
1,025
If iPad Air moves to the M chip, there’s no way the next basic iPad won’t get Touch ID in the side button and a fullscreen design. The M series chip is enough to distinguish itself from the entry level iPad.
 
I think the leak is wrong. Somebody leaked that the new iPad Air will have 8GB of RAM and whoever reported this assumed it has to be M1.

I bet it will be A16 instead. We already know from rumors that the iPhone 14 Pro will have 8GB of RAM, so an A16 iPad Air with 8GB of RAM is possible.

Would Apple roll out A16 in a relatively cheap iPad before it debuts in an iPhone?

In my head, iPhone rules all in Appledom. So M1 seems more likely to me than A16, but even that doesn't seem likely unless perhaps MBpro 13" is rolling out with M2 and perhaps then iPad Pro with M2 too.

All of this flurry of last minute rumors seems shaky to me. I would bet on A15 Air myself... or maybe A15super or similar.
 

tann

macrumors 68000
Apr 15, 2010
1,904
683
UK
It's too good to be true.
If it's true, key difference between Air 5 and Pro 2021 will be just ProMotion, Quad Speaker, Thunderbolt port and Dual Camera + LiDAR. All feature that most of people will overlook.

But let's see what Apple will bring to us here. After all, they're the company full of surprises.
and FaceID.
 
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ChromeCloud

macrumors 6502
Jun 21, 2009
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Would Apple roll out A16 in a relatively cheap iPad before it debuts in an iPhone?

In my head, iPhone rules all in Appledom. So M1 seems more likely to me than A16, but even that doesn't seem likely unless perhaps MBpro 13" is rolling out with M2 and perhaps then iPad Pro with M2 too.

All of this flurry of last minute rumors seems shaky to me. I would bet on A15 Air myself... or maybe A15super or similar.
A14 debuted in the iPad Air 4th gen before the iPhone 12 was launched.

My bet is that whoever leaked the information originally only knew the amount of RAM (8 GB). People who reported the leak then assumed it must be M1. But an A16 would be a much better fit for the iPad Air and the A16 is rumored to have 8GB of RAM in the iPhone 14 Pro configuration, so it is a perfect match.

The fact it will debut in the iPad Air ahead of the iPhone 14 launch is not gonna steal any thunder from the iPhone 14 event. If anything, Apple will brag about how impressive it is that the iPhone 14 Pro has a powerful A16 chip inside and still get impressive battery life.
 

chucker23n1

macrumors 604
Dec 7, 2014
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A14 debuted in the iPad Air 4th gen before the iPhone 12 was launched.

By a month, yeah. Probably for production volume reasons.

(There are certainly other examples — both the A4 and A5 debuted in an iPad before they did in an iPhone. But that's long, long ago.)

This would be more than half a year before the iPhone. I don't think that's likely.

My bet is that whoever leaked the information originally only knew the amount of RAM (8 GB). People who reported the leak then assumed it must be M1. But an A16 would be a much better fit for the iPad Air and the A16 is rumored to have 8GB of RAM in the iPhone 14 Pro configuration, so it is a perfect match.

Yes, but I don't see why they wouldn't simply give it an A15.

 

ChromeCloud

macrumors 6502
Jun 21, 2009
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Yes, but I don't see why they wouldn't simply give it an A15.
I agree on the A15 being the most rational candidate.

At the same time, though, leaks so close to an event usually turn out to be right, so I was trying to find a way to make this leak more believable (at least the 8GB of RAM part).

The A16 with 8GB of RAM would also fit the recent iPad Air trend:

iPad Air 3rd Gen: A12
iPad Air 4th Gen: A14
iPad Air 5th Gen: A16
 
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ApplesAreSweet&Sour

macrumors 6502a
Sep 18, 2018
561
700
From what we've seen Apple do in the past, it all comes down to pricing and storage options as Apple does not play around when it comes to product segmentation:

For $599, getting an M1(or A16) plus 8GB RAM is not really a super impressive deal if it's still only 64GB for the base model, at least not by comparison. By comparison, you get all those specs and many more improvements and twice the internal storage for $799 in the 11" iPad Pro.

64GB on any device as sandboxed as an iPad is no good, if you ask me.

So, I actually do believe this m1/A16+8gbRAM+64GB iPad Air could be plausible.

However, iPad mini 2021 will be an absolute terrible deal @$499 if the 2021 Air is indeed $599 with an M1(or equivalent) + 8GB RAM and 64GB storage.
 
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Duncan-UK

macrumors 6502
Sep 17, 2006
478
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It all depends on what you need. The mini for me is an excellent device regardless of the specs of the Air, because of its smaller size. I use iPads for professional presenting. Having two minis is a lot better than having two larger devices.
 

chucker23n1

macrumors 604
Dec 7, 2014
7,004
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I agree on the A15 being the most rational candidate.

At the same time, though, leaks so close to an event usually turn out to be right, so I was trying to find a way to make this leak more believable (at least the 8GB of RAM part).

The A16 with 8GB of RAM would also fit the recent iPad Air trend:

iPad Air 3rd Gen: A12
iPad Air 4th Gen: A14
iPad Air 5th Gen: A16

Sure, but I see no reason they couldn't put 8GB in the A15. Variations of the A15 exist anyway (the iPhone 13 and 13 mini have four GPU cores, whereas the iPhone 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max have five; the iPad mini runs the A15 at 2.9 GHz, whereas the iPhones 13 run it at 3.2 GHz).
 
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kanki1985

macrumors regular
Oct 8, 2013
123
404
Wait, was there not a chip contamination incident that was to jack up prices of all storage chips? If Apple were to keep the same pricepoint doubling storage, it would be shocking!
 
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ChromeCloud

macrumors 6502
Jun 21, 2009
285
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Sure, but I see no reason they couldn't put 8GB in the A15. Variations of the A15 exist anyway (the iPhone 13 and 13 mini have four cores, whereas the iPhone 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max have five; the iPad mini runs the A15 at 2.9 GHz, whereas the iPhones 13 run it at 3.2 GHz).
I agree on the A15 with 8GB of RAM being a possible configuration.

Currently we have A15 with 4GB of RAM in the iPhone 13 and A15 with 6GB of RAM in the iPhone 13 Pro. So yeah a third configuration with 8GB of RAM is still very much a possibility.

From a production standpoint, though, I think it makes more sense to go with A16 / 8GB since it would remove the need to manufacture a "special" configuration of the A15 with 8GB of RAM just for the iPad Air.

Also I need to point out that the variations you are referring to (core counts and clock speed) are not real manufacturing variations. The A15 processor with 4GB of RAM that goes in the iPad mini 6th gen, for example, is the same exact SOC as the one that goes into the iPhone 13. The only difference is that in the iPhone 13, the 5th GPU core is disabled. But the SOC is exactly identical.
 

JosephAW

macrumors 601
May 14, 2012
4,729
5,805
Too pricey for my budget, maybe there will be some good deals after today on a iPad Air gen 2 for $100 and I can retire my gen 1 cellular.
 

MayaUser

macrumors 6502a
Nov 22, 2021
922
1,436
I think the leak is wrong. Somebody leaked that the new iPad Air will have 8GB of RAM and whoever reported this assumed it has to be M1.

I bet it will be A16 instead. We already know from rumors that the iPhone 14 Pro will have 8GB of RAM, so an A16 iPad Air with 8GB of RAM is possible.
Apple never presented A16, the next SoC before the iphone with months ahead
 
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