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Oct 10, 2016 11:56 AM EDT

iPad Mini 5 Release Date, Spes & Rumors Round-Up [VIDEO]; Tablet Arriving In 2017?

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The highly anticipated iPad Mini 5 is likely to hit the store shelves in 2017, alongside an all-new iPad Pro 2.

Apple remained mum about the iPad Mini 5 release date during the recently concluded new iPhone launch event, and this stirred conversations among avid iPad fans that the device will be unveiled in 2017. Furthermore, judging by Apple's previous announcement, the company is likely to hold several event in the year including the WWDC (Worldwide Developers Conference).

If this proved to be true, industry watchers believe that rather than having two separate product lineups, iPad Mini 5 will be rebranded as the iPad Pro Mini. This is in bid to avoid possible competition between these two Apple tablets, with the new iPad Mini possibly offering a comparatively economical choice than its 9.7-inch counterpart.

In terms of specifications, the mini version is expected to come with support for a 3D Touch pressure-sensitive panel identical to the iPhones which offers an enhanced user experience. Moreover, it is likely to be made with a 7000-series aluminium chassis to provide a thinner and lighter unibody. It is also expected to make the tablet more durable and robust, MacWorld reported.

Under the hood, the iPad Mini 5 is likely to pack an enhanced A9 processor coupled with 2GB of RAM. The base storage is expected to start at a larger 32GB, unlike its predecessor which had a storage capacity of 16GB. Furthermore, according to VineReport, additional options for 64GB and 128GB may be provided for those looking to buy a more spacious device.

In addition, the cameras are likely to come with better lens capacities at 8MP for the primary, and either a 1.2MP or 2MP front snapper. The device is also expected to come preinstalled with the latest iOS 10.

Meanwhile, Apple continues to remain tight-lipped regarding the iPad Mini 5 release date. Optimistic fans, however, are hoping that Apple will shed more light on the iPad Mini 5 release date during its fourth quarter earnings conference call on Oct. 25 at 2 p.m. PT/ 5 p.m. ET.

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