Apple's major OLED iPad upgrade finally gets a release window

iPad Pro on train
(Image credit: iMore)

Apple's 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro models are expected to debut with a brand new OLED display upgrade next year, and now we have a clearer picture of when they may be available for the first time.

In a new report by Digitimes, two major display-panel manufacturers in China, GIS and TPK, have allegedly committed to expanding their manufacturing facilities to create ‘flexible’ OLED panels for the next generation of iPad Pro models. According to Digitimes, these iPads will launch “in the mid or second half of 2024”, the first such rumor regarding their release date.

OLED would be an upgrade on the micro-LED display on the current 12.9-inch iPad Pro already but flexible OLED goes further. These displays can be made for a lower price, and are lighter than traditional OLED panels.

While these iPad updates could be tempting to many as a potential upgrade for early next year, its software is still lacking compared to macOS, even with iPadOS 17, which is expected later this month alongside iOS 17.


Flexible to the Future? - iMore’s Take

Mark Gurman’s Power On newsletter had already reported that a new M3 OLED iPad Pro was coming, alongside a redesigned Magic Keyboard accessory. However, a better display could further help to justify an upgrade for existing iPad users.

In previous years, we’ve seen new chips in iPad Pro updates, alongside an exclusive micro-LED display for the 12.9-inch M2 iPad Pro in 2022. But you could argue that these have been minor improvements.

Seeing a collection of updates across the board for those who are still using an iPad Pro from 2018 could be a bigger leap than those who are using an M1 iPad Pro for instance. Especially for those who have an 11-inch iPad Pro, as it’s never had a micro-LED display. A bigger jump in speed, combined with an aluminum Magic Keyboard, and a mid-2024 release could help prepare these users for the impending upgrade.

With the other improvements that OLED brings, such as more vivid colors, better brightness, and a lesser drain on battery life, buying an iPad Pro could be a tempting prospect once both models arrive next year.

Daryl Baxter
Features Editor

Daryl is iMore's Features Editor, overseeing long-form and in-depth articles and op-eds. Daryl loves using his experience as both a journalist and Apple fan to tell stories about Apple's products and its community, from the apps we use everyday to the products that have been long forgotten in the Cupertino archives.


Previously Software & Downloads Writer at TechRadar, and Deputy Editor at StealthOptional, he's also written a book, 'The Making of Tomb Raider', which tells the story of the beginnings of Lara Croft and the series' early development. He's also written for many other publications including WIRED, MacFormat, Bloody Disgusting, VGC, GamesRadar, Nintendo Life, VRV Blog, The Loop Magazine, SUPER JUMP, Gizmodo, Film Stories, TopTenReviews, Miketendo64 and Daily Star.