2020 iPad Pro rendersSource: OnLeaks / iGeeksBlog

What you need to know

  • Apple is rumored to be working on a new 12-inch iPad Pro.
  • DigiTimes reports that it will be announced "around March".
  • It isn't clear whether this 12-inch iPad is all-new, or a refresh of the 12.9-inch model that's already available.

DigiTimes has today expanded on yesterday's report that Apple will announce refreshed iPad Pro tablets "around March". The new report suggests that the refresh will involve a "12-inch iPad Pro".

It isn't clear whether this 12-inch model is going to be an all-new tablet, or simply a mistake on the part of DigiTimes. Apple currently offers a 12.9-inch iPad Pro, so it's possible this is the device DigiTimes is reporting on.

The report also mentions that the new tablet will have a three-lens camera setup around the back, with a time-of-flight sensor included.

After upgrading its 9.7-inch iPad to 10.2-inch spec in 2019, Apple is set to release its new 12-inch iPad Pro model featuring a rear-end three-lens ToF 3D sensor in the spring, in a bid to boost its share of the global table market. The vendor registered total iPad shipments of 44 million units in 2019, slightly lower than 2018, the sources said.

We've heard rumors of such an addition for a good few months, although again, it isn't clear whether it will be included in all iPad Pro models or just the 12-inch one.

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However, it would appear that Apple's supply partners aren't able to produce the units as quickly as anticipated thanks to the coronavirus outbreak.

In fact, upstream supply chain partners already kicked off production of related components for the new model before the Lunar New Year holiday seeking to support iPad Pro shipment ramp-up by assemblers after the holiday. But assemblers are not expected to start ramping up shipments until March due the epidemic, and shipments may peak at a monthly level of over 3-3.5 million units in the second quarter, the sources said.

We've recently heard that an event will take place next month with the rumored iPhone 9 set to be announced. If so, that would likely also be the event that sees new iPad Pros, too.