When the new iPad Pro 2020 models were unveiled, some observers claimed they weren't that big an upgrade over the 2018 models - some camera upgrades, a slightly different chipset and mouse support were the main changes. But a new leak suggests a much more powerful new Pro model could also arrive this year.
We've heard about this rumored iPad Pro before, and new information has come out that may tell us a lot more about the device. China Times (opens in new tab), a financial publication, obtained leaked information about Apple's Bionic A14X chipset, sourced from a supply chain, which suggests it'll be going into production soon.
For context, the iPad Pro (2018) models used the Bionic 12X processor, and it was expected that the recently released 2020 devices would get the 13X chip. They actually arrived with the 12Z, a tweaked version of the 12X based on the Bionic A12 and A13 chipsets found in the iPhone XS and 11 models respectively.
The iPhone 12 is expected to have the Bionic A14, and according to this new leak the Bionic A14 and A14X will be 5nm chips, an improvement on the 7nm design of the Bionic A13 and A12, and any respective spin-offs.
This means more transistors can fit on the chip, so a device using the A14 or A14X should be much more powerful than the predecessors.
Big future for Apple
The next iPad Pros are expected to have the Bionic A14X, rather than the A13X. It's possible that Apple wants to continue developing its iPad and phone chipsets in tandem from now on, and if we're hearing news of the A14X then it's highly unlikely the A13X will exist.
In short, all this means that the iPhone 12, and the next iPad Pros are set to be hugely powerful devices.
We've already heard that Apple is working on a 5G iPad Pro, and we'd expect that to be the next Pro, as the iPhone 12 devices are expected to be 5G; and based on this new leak the tablets would have processing speeds to match their connectivity speeds.
What we're less sure about is a release date. While the China Times leak suggests the chipsets will go into production this year, it's not clear whether we could see a new iPad Pro in 2020 - which is possible, as Apple might choose to launch a 5G iPad Pro alongside a 5G iPhone 12 launch later this year - or if Apple will hold it back until 2021, to distance it from the iPad Pro 2020 models.
Either way, right now the next iPad Pro is still a way off, but leaks and rumors are starting to pick up, so stay tuned for all the latest iPad Pro news and rumors.