Sketchy rumor suggests iPad mini 3 will be 30% thinner

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A pair of new rumors suggest that the next iPad mini will be 30 percent thinner, and that Apple is hard at work on a 12.9-inch iPad for 2015.

A pretty sketchy rumor coming out of China claims that the new model iPad mini 3 might borrow the “Air” moniker of its bigger brother, and be a whopping 30 percent thinner than its predecessor.

The report also claims that this new iPad mini Air will rely on the as-yet-unnannounced A8 processor currently manufactured by TSMC.

Given that the current iPad mini is just 0.29 inches thick — and astonishingly light — it seems impossible that Apple would manage to shave off close to a third of its thickness. (By comparison, the much-commented-on thicker iPad mini 2, which added Retina display, was only four percent thicker than the first generation iPad mini.)

That’s not the only iPad-related rumor for today. David Hsieh, VP of the Greater China Market at DisplaySearch, claims that Apple is planning to counter slowing tablet sales by creating a new 12.9-inch iPad model, which will be released in 2015.

There have been reports of a so-called iPad Pro for a while, although Taiwan’s United Daily News has cited supply chain sources suggesting that such an iPad will instead be released at the end of Q3 or beginning of Q4 this year.

While it’s quite possible that Apple will at some point create an iPad Pro — particularly as more and more high-end work is carried out on tablets — the idea that it would create a 12.9-inch iPad goes directly against other reports suggesting a 12-inch MacBook is on the way. The idea of creating such a MacBook would reportedly be to establish a clear size difference with the existing iPad Air to avoid the two product lines cannibalizing one another.

Creating an iPad With a 12.9-inch form factor would seem to totally contradict these rumors.

In other words, while a thinner iPad mini and larger-screen iPad may be desirable to a number of readers, both of these rumors should be taken with a sizeable pinch of salt.

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About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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