New iPad Pro may launch in April with M1 speed, mini-LED, and new cameras

iPad Pro (2018)
iPad Pro (2018) (Image credit: Rene Ritchie / iMore)

What you need to know

  • The new iPad Pro may launch as soon as next month.
  • The upgrade will include a new chip, cameras, display, and connector technology.

A new report says the new 2021 iPad Pro could debut next month with plenty of big upgrades in two.

As reported by Bloomberg, Apple is planning on announcing new iPads as early as April. The company will reportedly be updating its 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro with a new processor as well as better cameras. The new iPads will apparently look very similar to the design of the current iPad Pro lineup.

According to the report, the new chip contained in the latest generation of iPad Pro will be on par with the performance of the M1 processor currently featured in the new MacBook Air, 13-inch MacBook Pro, and Mac mini. However, it does not go as far as to say that the new iPads will actually pack an M1 and will most likely feature the latest A-series chip from Apple.

The larger 12.9-inch iPad Pro is also expected to feature a mini-LED display, a first for any Apple product.

The devices will have an updated processor that is on par with the faster M1 chip in the latest MacBook Air, MacBook Pro and Mac mini. Apple designs these processors itself and typically has them made by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Apple is also looking to include a Mini-LED screen with at least the larger model, which would be brighter and have improved contrast ratios.

Best iPad for artists

Best iPad for artists (Image credit: iMore)

Apple is apparently upgrading the connector of the new iPad Pro to Thunderbolt as well, enabling more connections and faster transfer speeds.

In testing, the new iPad Pros have used a Thunderbolt connector, the same port on the latest Macs with custom Apple processors. The port doesn't require new chargers, but it would enable connectivity with additional external monitors, hard drives and other peripherals. It's also faster at syncing data than the USB-C technology used in the current models.

In addition to the iPad Pro, Apple apparently plans to update its base model iPad and iPad mini as well later this year.

Apple plans to refresh its cheapest iPad aimed at students with a thinner and lighter design later this year, Bloomberg News has reported. It's also preparing to launch a new iPad mini with a larger screen as early as this year, an increase from the 7.9-inch display used since the first model. The iPad mini was last upgraded in 2019 with support for the Apple Pencil stylus and a faster processor.

A spokesperson from Apple declined to comment on the report.

If you don't need the performance that comes with the iPad Pro and are wondering what iPad is best for you, check out out list of the Best iPad in 2021.

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.