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iPad Mini redesign set for fall launch, report says

The long-rumored iPad Mini update will decrease the bezel size and possibly remove the home button, according to Bloomberg.

Óscar Gutiérrez/CNET

The iPad, iPad Air and iPad Pro lines have all been updated with new models in the past 9 months, so it makes sense that the iPad Mini, the last of the bunch, will come next. That is indeed the case, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman, who in his newsletter reports a redesigned iPad Mini "should be a go" for fall 2021. 

A new-and-improved iPad Mini has long been rumored launch this year. Famously reliable supply chain analyst Ming-Chi Kuo last year noted an updated iPad Mini was planned for first half of 2021, then in May said its release was now planned for the second half of the year.

In June, Bloomberg's Gurman reported a 2021 iPad Mini was coming in later in the year. The new model would have smaller bezels, and may also have no Home button. Both Kuo and Gurman have said Apple will update its iPad Mini this year before refreshing the iPad Pro again in 2022.

Like many other companies, notably Sony and Microsoft, Apple has been challenged by the worldwide shortage of chips and other key computing parts. If Kuo's report was accurate and Apple did have to delay the iPad Mini from the first to the second half of the year, supply shortages are potentially why.  

Apple's entire suite of iPad products has been one of the winning products of the COVID-19 era. Despite the fact that more people are working from home and the iPad is designed to be a computer on the go, sales of the iPad were up more than 70%.   

The iPad Mini was last updated in 2019, when it got a then-new A12 processor and Apple Pencil support. The standard iPad -- which retails for $329 (£329, AU$499) against the $399 (£399, AU$599) iPad Mini -- has since been updated with the same processor and Apple Pencil support. 

The most recent iPad refresh came with the Pro line, which in May got a beautiful new display, an M1 processor and 5G support.