The tablet market might be experiencing a slump at the moment, but that should not cause any kind of undue alarm for Cupertino as Apple prepares itself to roll out the 10.5-inch iPad Pro in the near future. One particular rumor points to an iPad Pro launch some time in early April 2017, which would jive with earlier rumors that the iPad Pro 2 would arrive in Q2 2017. The beginning of April would fall squarely within the expected timetable, and the most recent rumors from east Asia do point in that general direction with whispers of Apple expediting the manufacturing process of the new flagship tablet in order to make the date.
DigiTimes have the inside handle on Apple's supply chain, and have cited its anonymous sources that Apple has ramped up production for the 10.5-inch iPad Pro this month so that the company will be able to meet whatever demand there is for an early April roll out. The fact that Apple was supposed to work on a new media event next month also set alarm bells ringing that the debut of the new 10.5-inch iPad Pro model is imminent. After all, what better way to mark the inauguration of Apple Park that will be opened next month than that of a new product launch? Of course, it would be too much to ask for Apple to introduce the all new iPhone 8 for that media event, but if it happens, it would be really something to remember.
DigiTimes’ track record concerning upcoming Apple devices have been rather spotty at best, but this particular rumor is all that we have to cling on to as at press time. Only time, accompanied by patience, will be able to reveal further information and confirmation so the whole world will simply need to sit tight and wait for everything else to blow over. There were also insinuations from DigiTimes that there will be a keynote that will be held at Apple Park, but that does not seem to be too likely at all. After all, work is still being done on the Steve Jobs theater that is set to complete only later this year, but we are not denying the fact that there will be employees who will be making a move into the new headquarters next month.
Other rumored launch dates for the 10.5-inch iPad Pro, or iPad Pro 2, depending on which camp you are on, include this month and May with April sandwiched in between. Obviously those who place their money on a release this month are most likely to lose their bet, but there is still a small window of opportunity for Apple to make an announcement concerning new iPad products between March 20 and 24. The fact that no media invitations have been sent out to date for the regular product keynote makes it highly unlikely.
Mobile marketing firm Fiksu has uncovered a quartet of new iPad identifiers that feature versions of iOS 10.3 running on the respective devices, which would mean that there will be more than one variant of the upcoming iPad model. This would most likely include the rumored 12.9-inch iPad Pro and a more affordable 9.7-inch iPad that will oust the existing iPad Air 2.