This leaked iPad mini 7 better have an OLED display or I'm not buying

Ipad Mini 6 2021 Lifestyle Touch Id
Ipad Mini 6 2021 Lifestyle Touch Id (Image credit: Apple)

We're still months away from Apple unveiling its latest generation iPad models. The company usually does so during an event held in October or sometimes even November — and occasionally will roll out in a press release if it feels they aren't worthy of an event.

Whatever form the new iPads are being announced, Apple isn't going to get to wait until this fall to show them to us for the first time. As reported yesterday, a new leak revealed 3 new iPads from the company including an 11th generation base model iPad, an iPad Pro with a yet-unannounced M5 chip, and the iPad mini 7 (it's happening!).

While a new base model iPad and iPad Pro are always great, I'm personally most excited about the 7th-generation iPad mini. Apple's smallest tablet is the one I personally run now and, after enjoying the 6th-generation redesign for a while, I'm ready for what's next for the iPad mini.

While the leak says we can expect the new iPad mini to feature the A17 processor and both Wi-Fi and Cellular configurations (no surprise there), there's one feature that is going to be a requirement if I'm going to consider making an upgrade.

The iPad mini needs an OLED display

There's plenty of things that could make the new iPad mini exciting, including upgrades to the processor, cameras, and base storage (we should definitely be rocking at least 128GB of storage in 2024). However, the display is the only thing I care about with the iPad mini 7.

And no, I'm not talking about the iPad mini getting a ProMotion display and running the screen at 120Hz — that's not happening people. There's a reason that it's called ProMotion. That performance is reserved for Pro models. However, a display technology that could — and should — come to the iPad mini is an OLED display.

I've been a sucker for an OLED display ever since I got my first iPhone with an OLED display. I've since picked up two OLED televisions and, when I had to decide which Nintendo Switch model to buy, that became an easy decision: the Nintendo Switch OLED.

While there are plenty of screen technologies out there that try to compete, there's still nothing like the color and contrast performance you get from an OLED display. Now that Apple has brought its new Tandem OLED display to the iPad Pro, the technology coming down to the non-Pro models is the next move.

iPad mini 6 and view of TouchID

(Image credit: Adam Oram / iMore)

But wait, OLED — like ProMotion — is supposed to be reserved for the Pro models! Not true. The base model iPhone has already gotten the OLED upgrade and both the regular iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro models, for example, both run OLED displays.

So, will the iPad mini 7 get an OLED display? Honestly, I doubt it. Being that the company had to invent a completely new screen technology and M4 processor in order to bring OLED to the iPad Pro, I think OLED is going to be reserved for the Pro model for now. The MacBook Pro isn't even expected to get an OLED display until 2026.

While I think it's an inevitability, I think we have a bit of a wait to get there. So, while I'd certainly recommend the iPad mini 7 to anyone who has a 5th generation model or older when Apple announces it later this year, I don't think I'll be upgrading from my 6th generation iPad mini.

I think we're going to have to wait until the iPad mini 8 before Apple can get the technology affordable enough to get it into the $499 tablet. So, keep appreciating that iPad mini 6, everyone! We'll get OLED eventually.

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Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.