A new case mould showing of the fifth-generation iPad’s new design has surfaced today, alongside a date on which Apple will announce the device. As expected, the mould points to an all-new thinner form factor for the device, with narrow bezels down either side of the display, much like the iPad mini.
The source of the mould claims the iPad 5 will be announced on June 18, which could see its unveiling during WWDC.
The mould surfaced in the Far East, and was picked up by Tactus.com. As you can see from the image below, comparing an fifth-generation iPad case (green) with a fourth-generation iPad case (blue), the device is set to be significantly narrower — thanks to those thinner bezels — while keeping the same 9.7-inch display.
The speakers will also move to the bottom of the device either side of the Lightning connector, just like the iPad mini. According to Tactus, the new iPad won’t just be narrower, but also “a lot thinner” and lighter. It will be “close to what the iPad mini is in terms of depth.”
So when will we see it? Well, Tactus claims Apple will announce the device at a media event on June 18, months earlier than most reports have been suggesting. It’s unclear whether a new iPad mini will be announced alongside it, but we’d expect all iPad models to be refreshed at the same time from now on.
That date puts the unveiling around WWDC time, and suggests the new iPad could be unveiled alongside iOS 7, Apple’s next-generation OS. However, the device is likely to launch running iOS 6, with iOS 7 making its public debut later this fall with the new iPhone.
We cannot confirm this information is accurate, of course, but it gives us a good idea of what the fifth-generation iPad will look like based on all the rumors. There’s every chance this case mould was built based on those rumors — and not on official information from Apple — but nevertheless, this is what we all expect the new iPad to look like.