Thinner iPad 5 Possible Thanks to New Screen Tech

The Apple iPad 5 will likely sport a thinner design thanks to a new screen technology that debuted on the iPad mini in 2012.

According to several leaked photos and iPad 5 cases, the new iPad will look a lot like the iPad mini and may measure as much as 20% thinner this fall. The numerous leaks also point to a narrower design thanks to smaller bezels and a 25% lighter iPad.

Apple is counting on new screen technology that it debuted with the iPad mini to make this new design work, and according to a new rumor from Asia the GF2 touch screen technology is on track for the iPad 5.

An iPad 5 concept showing what the iPad 5 could look like next to the iPad 4.

An iPad 5 concept showing what the iPad 5 could look like next to the iPad 4. Martin Hajek

The source of this rumors is DigiTimes which has a hit or miss record with Apple rumors, but as the clock ticks down towards a possible October or November iPad 5 release suppliers will know more about the future of the iPad.

This is the second time DigiTimes shared rumors of an iPad 5 with the new GF2 touchscreen technology, which it first talked about in late January.

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New touch screen technology builds the touch sensors into the glass that covers the actual display, saving space which Apple can use to build a thinner iPad. This does not mean that Apple will move away from a Retina Display, which the report claims is in the works with competing processes from Sharp, Samsung and LG.

The video below from iFixit shows the iPad mini using the GF2 touchscreen technology, which allows the iPad to respond to touches when the touchscreen is not directly on top of it.

In the report DigiTimes claims Apple is not holding back on a Retina Display for the iPad mini 2 because of technology, but because it could cannibalize iPad 5 sales. Reports go back and forth on the inclusion of the high-resolution display in the iPad mini 2.

Apple did not talk about the iPad 5 release timing in the recent earnings call, but continued to promise “amazing” products for the fall and into 2014. Based on the lack of a new iPad in the spring and a very successful iPad 4 holiday launch in 2012 a new iPad is likely in the cards for later this year.

Apple issued guidance on Q4 2013 earnings this morning which one firm claims means we will see an iPhone 5S release before September 28th when the quarter ends.

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According to Walter Piecyk of BTIG Apple’s new product in Q4 will be an iPhone, which leaves room for an iPad 5 release date in October or November in time to help Apple deliver an impressive Q1 2014 financial result on the back of holiday sales.

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