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Apple will drop the next altogether more compact and bijou iPad on the cusp of the third quarter, reports suggest, in what looks like a busy end to the year for the gadget-maker.

According to Digitimes, the iPad 5 is set to go into production in July and could launch “as early as September”. Assuming that’s so, and that we can believe what we read, that’s also when the iPhone 6 could tip up, marking what would be a pretty impressive one-two punch for Apple as it bids to head off the challenge from Android.

While the report doesn’t give us any information about what kind of features we can expect, it does tell us that the fifth-gen iPad will retain the same screen 9.7-inch screen with 2048 x 1536 resolution. However, this time around it will reportedly pack a glass substrate that’s thinner than its predecessor.

This, coupled with the use of LED backlighting that’s up to one-third lighter than the earlier iteration, means the iPad 5 will be significantly slimmer than the current model, the site claims.

Apple is also reported to be working on a second version of the iPad mini, but is mooted to be facing problems packing high-density Retina screen technology into the smaller device mean it may not arrive for some time.



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