There has never been any doubt that Apple’s iPhones 2020 will be 5G enabled with the Qualcomm X55 modem offering the capability. A new report by DigiTimes, however, claims that not just iPhones but there will be an iPad Pro model also with 5G support. The company may announce the iPad Pro also at the same September launch event as the iPhones. These are not confirmed reports as yet since they also raise a few questions.
iPad Pro Update Was Expected in March This Year
Most industry observers had assumed that Apple will announce certain updates to the iPad Pro in the first quarter of 2020 based on a few calculations. The last major update of the device was in October 2018 and the next one is due anyway. The speculation was that the iPad Pro would get a triple camera setup in the rear and a 3D sensing feature to facilitate the use of augmented reality (AR). The doubt now being raised is will Apple release an updated iPad Pro in March and follow through with another in September/October 2020? If the update is to launch the 5G enabled iPad with other features being the same, this rumor may still hold. There is the processor upgrade as well from the A13 Bionic chipset to the A14 on the iPhones. The processor for the iPad Pro will be the A14X Bionic chipset. If you add these together, it may sound as if Apple may keep the comprehensive update of the iPad Pro for the third quarter. Any of these eventualities is possible.
Supply Chain Sources Quoted by the Reports
DigiTimes is a Taiwan based publication and Apple has many arrangements in that country for its product assembly and component suppliers. To be precise, there were reports a couple of days back that the production of iPads has been shifted out of China to Taiwan. This is due to the disruption in China following the Coronavirus scare. Based on these, if DigiTimes has indeed picked up the rumors from the Taiwanese sources, there may be some substance in these reports.
It has added in its report that besides the A14 chipsets, the devices will have the provision to operate the mmWave and sub-6GHz technologies for connectivity. The mmWave technology enables high speeds in multiples of 4G speeds but with a limitation in terms of proximity to the source of the connection. The sub-6GHz technology, on the other hand, will be operational at far off distances as well though offering lower speeds than mmWave.