Apple Store delivery delays could point to new iPad (2021)

iPad 2020 resting on someone's lap
iPad 2020 (Image credit: Future)

Apple has just announced the date of its next event as September 14 and at long last we may finally see details about the long-rumored iPhone 13 and Apple Watch 7. However, the event is also rumored to be the debut of a new entry-level iPad (2021), and some believe the Apple Store is giving us yet another clue.

Some consumers have noticed that the iPad (2020)  currently has huge shipping delays on the official Apple webpage in the US and UK. When we checked ourselves the iPad Pro and iPad Mini we wanted to order would both arrive tomorrow, but the base iPad wouldn’t be delivered until the start of October.

Further adding fuel to the fire Mark Gurman, a writer for Bloomberg, tweeted that Apple Employees have been instructed not to speculate to consumers about the cause of the delays. Apple’s secrecy suggests it might be trying to hide something which would most likely be a new iPad launch; the delay could either have been caused by production slowdowns to make way for the new iPad or could be an effort to have interested customers wait until the latest model hits shelves.

While this is by no means an official confirmation we can’t help but put on our tinfoil hats and join the club of people speculating that an iPad announcement is coming. Thankfully the Apple Event is only a week away so we don’t have long to wait to find out.

Analysis: Little to go on, but plenty to hope for

Right now we know very little officially about the iPad (2021) but that’s likely to change on September 14. For now, we’ll just have to rely on leaks and rumors that have given us an indication of what we can expect from Apple’s latest entry-level tablet.

Multiple rumors have suggested the iPad will be powered by the A13 Bionic chipset which we saw in the iPhone 11 and has 4GB RAM. The most affordable version will have 64GB storage which is double the 32GB that comes with the cheapest iPad model currently. 

We’ve also heard it could be the thinnest iPad ever made, with the small-form-factor being implemented to market the tablet towards students. Otherwise, it sounds like the design is unchanged from what we’ve seen before, with a Touch ID home button and big bezels.

Best of all for students who might be on a budget, this iPad could have the range's lowest launch price ever at just $299 in the US (roughly £220, AU$400) according to one price leak. That’s only a touch cheaper than the iPad 10.2 (2020) which cost $329 / £329 / AU$499, but a $30 price decrease is still nothing to sniff at.

Hamish Hector
Senior Staff Writer, News

Hamish is a Senior Staff Writer for TechRadar and you’ll see his name appearing on articles across nearly every topic on the site from smart home deals to speaker reviews to graphics card news and everything in between. He uses his broad range of knowledge to help explain the latest gadgets and if they’re a must-buy or a fad fueled by hype. Though his specialty is writing about everything going on in the world of virtual reality and augmented reality.