More Second-Generation iPad Air Part Leaks Point to A8X Chip, 2GB RAM, 16GB Storage Option
A fairly clear image of what is said to be the logic board for the second-generation iPad Air suggests that the device will indeed come with an A8X chip, as hinted at in earlier images shared over the weekend.
Furthermore, the new image published by Apple.club.tw [Google Translate] seems to point towards 2GB of RAM for the device. Though the image of the RAM on the logic board is low resolution and fuzzy, enhancing the contrast and the brightness reveals a bit of information about the numbers on the chip. While the first letter is entirely blurred, it is the second character that is key to determining whether the chip is 1GB or 2GB.
A 1GB Elpida chip would have an "8" in the second character slot, while a 2GB chip would have an "A" in the same spot. Because of the quality of the image, it is difficult to say for certain what the character is, but it does appear to be an "A" rather than an "8" given that it is narrower at the top and wider at the bottom.
Multiple rumors have suggested that Apple will double the memory in the second-generation iPad Air, which would give it the power to support split-screen multitasking. Last week, an image depicting a 2GB Elpida RAM module surfaced, and it appears that photo showed a set of the same chips seen in the logic board.
Apple has stuck to 1GB of RAM for several generations of devices, including the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus, but Apple may have big plans in mind for the second-generation iPad Air 2 as it also appears to be gaining an A8X chip.
While Apple used an A6X chip in the fourth-generation iPad, the iPad Air used the same A7 chip as the iPhone 5s clocked at a higher speed. The company was widely expected to utilize the same strategy in the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus for the iPad Air 2, but a faster A8X chip may have been utilized to power features like split-screen multitasking. There have also been some rumors of a "Retina HD" resolution for an upcoming iPad, which would likely require a more powerful chip.
Along with 2GB of RAM and an A8X processor, the logic board image appears to depict a 16GB Hynix flash module (denoted by the "TDG" characters on the chip), suggesting that the second-generation iPad Air will continue to be offered with 16GB of storage at the low end. It's possible Apple could do what it did for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, offering a 16GB solution along with 64 and 128GB options, doing away with the 32GB tier of storage space and sliding the 64 and 128GB tiers down $100 from their current levels.
Apple is expected to unveil the second-generation iPad Air at a media event that it is holding this Thursday on its Cupertino campus. The event may also see the debut of Retina iMacs and another preview of OS X Yosemite ahead of its public release.