Apple Planning Thicker Bezel-Free 10.5" iPad Pro With 9.7" Footprint and No Home Button [Updated]
Apple has a nearly bezel-free 10.9-inch iPad Pro under development without a Home button, according to Japanese website Mac Otakara.
The report said the nearly bezel-free design will allow for the 10.9-inch model to have the same overall footprint as the current 9.7-inch iPad Pro. A top bezel will remain in order to provide space for the front-facing FaceTime camera, but the bottom bezel will be reduced, according to supply chain sources cited.
The much-rumored 10.9-inch model will also be marginally thicker at 7.5mm, the same depth as the original iPad Air. The current 9.7-inch iPad Pro measures 6.1mm thick. The next 12.9-inch model will also be 0.3mm thicker at 7.2mm, while a rumored 7.9-inch iPad Pro will allegedly likely have the same dimensions as the iPad mini 4.
Earlier this month, a group of Barclays analysts said Apple will launch a trio of new iPad Pro models in March, including the aforementioned bezel-free 10.9-inch model and refreshed 9.7-inch and 12.9-inch versions. The note likewise said the 10.9-inch model will have a 9.7-inch footprint without a Home button.
Multiple rumors have pointed towards a new iPad in the 10-inch range, but the exact screen size has varied in each report. KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said 10.5 inches, echoed by DigiTimes, while an earlier Mac Otakara report said 10.1 inches. Mac Otakara and Barclays now appear to agree on 10.9 inches.
Mac Otakara previously said the 10.9-inch iPad Pro will feature quad microphones, compared to the dual-microphone setup on existing iPad Pro models, and retain a 3.5mm headphone jack. More "revolutionary" changes, including a switch to OLED displays, are expected in 2018, according to Kuo.
Update: At some point after publishing its article, Mac Otakara has changed "10.9-inch iPad Pro" to "10.5-inch iPad Pro," which is the more agreed upon display size for the rumored tablet.