Some latest reports claim that Apple is working on the cheapest iPad ever. After introducing the priciest iPhone X in the market, the company is looking quite positive and wants to make its way among price-orientated consumers. The next iPad may make its debut in 2018.
In March this year, Apple had launched a 9.7-inch iPad with a price tag of $329 for the first time. This iPad may have an even cheaper variant that will set you back around $259. Yes! You’ve read that absolutely right. Reports indicate that Apple will make its cheapest iPad available in emerging markets including India.
Apple’s iPad business has come across some bumpy quarters in recent years. Although the tablet market is growing at a faster rate, the iPhone maker has been seeing weaken iPad sales. In its November earnings call, the Cupertino-based mogul had reported double-digit unit growth in iPad sales for the second consecutive quarter but didn’t provide a breakdown of sales across tablet models. Most second- and third-tier brand vendors had already stepped out of the market, whereas China-based white-box tablet players had also shifted their focus to other product lines after Intel discontinued offering financial support to use its CPUs.
It’s been believed that the iPad sales growth will be recovered this year with the launch of the cheapest iPad and compelling iPad Pro upgrades. However, it’s unclear whether this new $259 9.7-inch iPad will be introduced in addition to the $329 model, or if it would replace it entirely.
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There’s not much information provided about the device’s technical specifications. The only thing that we know now is its screen size, i.e. 9.7 inches. The device will be manufactured by Compal Electronics and may arrive in the second quarter of 2018.
In order to give a boost to its iPad revenue growth, Apple has also rolled out its iOS 10.3.2 update for iPad. The new upgrade comes with a number of bug fixes as well as enhanced performance and security features.
With this cheapest iPad, Apple is hoping to target a market of price-conscious customers to maintain its 10Mn unit tablet shipments per quarter. It’s likely a response to the ever-evolving competition from rivals like Amazon, Samsung, Lenovo, and Huawei, which offer tablet options that are vastly cheaper than Apple’s fare.
The launch of the cheapest iPad and the 10.5-inch iPad Pro this year may lead to an increase in the iPad shipments. It’s possible that Apple may hold a media event in March next year, where it is expected to ring up the curtains from its new iPad along with other new products such as iPhone SE 2. Apple HomePod is also likely to start shipping in early 2018. A new Apple Watch with a microLED display is yet another product that may be seen at the March 2018 keynote.
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