Apple iPad Mini 2024: release date predictions and rumored features

Are we finally closer to the release of the iPad mini 2024? And, if so, what is Apple's upcoming pocketable slate going to be like?

The “best” (as a concept) varies for everyone based on lifestyle and needs, making the iPad mini the go-to choice for all who crave small tablets.

The current iteration, the iPad mini 6, may be well over two years old (it was released on September 24, 2021), but it still reigns supreme. The most likely new leader will probably be another Apple product: enter the new iPad mini.

It's going to be called the “iPad mini 7th generation”. Further on, we will simply refer to it as “iPad mini 7” or “iPad mini 2024”.

Expected to launch in the latter half of the year, the iPad mini 2024 has stirred anticipation among Apple fans since no new tablet (big or small) came from Apple in 2023. Insights from noted analysts hint at a production timeline extending into Fall 2024, reflecting a departure from the iPad mini's once predictable annual update cycle.

Amid speculation, the pricing strategy is likely to align with the precedent set by the iPad mini 6, suggesting starting prices around $499 for the Wi-Fi model and $649 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular variant, despite potential camera and storage upgrades emphasizing enhancements like Photonic Engine technology and a base storage of 64GB.

The design of the iPad mini 7 is anticipated to continue the boxy, flat-sided look characteristic of its predecessor, possibly with new color options. However, significant display advancements appear unlikely, with the device expected to retain its LCD panel and address the "jelly scrolling" issue through design tweaks.

egarding performance, the tablet may feature an advanced A-series chip, such as the A16 or A17, and come equipped with iPadOS 18, ensuring compatibility with the latest connectivity standards. 

Here's a more detailed breakdown of the information about the upcoming iPad mini 2024 so far:

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iPad mini 7 release date

Based on predictions by industry experts, the iPad mini 2024 could come to light somewhere in the second half of 2024.

We have waited for the iPad mini 2024 for a while now. In the beginning of 2023, we thought that the end of the year was a reasonable time to expect the compact slate, but given that 2023 is now in the past, our hopes transfer to 2024. That's exactly in line with what Bloomberg's Mark Gurman said in one of his December 2023 articles.

  • The iPad mini 2024 is expected to come "later in 2024" - later than the Spring announcement of iPad Air and iPad Pro.

In the middle of October 2023, there was a brief, but memorable hype around a rumor that said Apple is to suddenly roll out three new iPad models, one of which was vowed to be none other than the iPad mini 2024. The day this was supposed to happen came and went away, leaving tablet aficionados with a bitter taste in their mouths, but there was something unveiled after all: a cheaper Apple Pencil 3 with USB-C charging.

In November, none other than tried and trusted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo mentioned the upcoming pocketable tablet briefly, stating that its production may be postponed for the fall of 2024 (which is also when we expect the 11th-generation iPad).

It should be noted that the iPad mini lineup used to follow a very regular and predictable release schedule. The first four generations were each announced within about one year of one another. Hence, the iPad mini received annual refreshes until 2015. 

However, this changed with the iPad mini 5 which broke the established timeframe and launched some three and a half years after its predecessor. It took another two and a half years for the iPad mini 6, the current latest iteration, to be released. For a full breakdown of all the relevant launch and announcement dates, you can refer to the table below. 

iPad mini 7 price

We can’t be certain of the price as of the moment, but we can speculate on the topic.

Apple introduced a price increase with the latest generation, after previously freezing the starting price for the better part of a decade. Hence, it is possible that the Cupertino company might keep the starting price of the iPad mini 2024 the same as the one of the current model (i.e. $499 for the Wi-Fi version, and $649 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular version). 

iPad mini 7 cameras

Traditionally, iPads (and especially iPad minis) have never been camera-centric devices. We don't expect this device to shine in the camera department, but an update to the front and rear cameras is due. It's 2024 already, after all! The current ‌iPad mini‌ shares the same cameras found across all current iPad models: A 12-megapixel rear camera with an ƒ/1.8 aperture, and a 12-megapixel Ultra Wide front-facing camera with an ƒ/2.4 aperture.

So far, nothing is certain, but the rumors have it that the iPad mini 2024 could offer software features like Photonic Engine (Apple's computational photography technology that enhances photos and helps in low-light scenarios). Among other possible updates could be the addition of ProRes video recording, Audio zoom, stereo audio recording, Portrait mode, and Portrait Lighting support.

iPad mini 7 storage 

Apple is notoriously stingy when it comes to storage. Given that the company's Pro devices currently start with a measly 128GB, it is very likely that the iPad mini 2024 will still have a base 64GB of internal storage.
  • We expect a 256GB model as well. 

iPad mini 7 design

With the iPad mini 6, Apple revamped the design to the more boxy look with flat sides that it now uses for all other iPads and most iPhones. Thus, we expect minor touch ups, or even the same exact design for this year's petite Apple tablet.

New color options, however, have been discussed lately. The current ‌iPad mini‌ is available in Space Gray, Starlight, Pink, and Purple. Apple could draw inspiration from the iPhone 15‌ line, and offer the iPad mini 2024 in Black, Blue, Green, Yellow, and Pink hues. Take this with a pinch of salt, as this is only a speculation.

iPad mini 7 display

The iPad mini 6 does not have a particularly impressive display. In fact, that is one of the biggest pet peeves users have with the current model, most notably the jelly scrolling issue

While Apple is currently working on bringing OLED technology to its iPad lineup, the emphasis is on the company's high-end tablets (i.e. the iPad Pro). In all likelihood, the iPad mini 7 will still feature an LCD panel. Additionally, earlier reports that the refresh rate of the display could be upgraded to 120Hz have been disproven by Ross Young, a prominent display industry insider. 

Back to the jelly scrolling issue: a recent rumor suggests that Apple is considering a design adjustment for the upcoming iPad mini to address exactly that. This issue is particularly noticeable when scrolling through text-heavy content in portrait mode. As users scroll, there's an effect where text lines seem to skew to the left, creating an illusion that one side of the display refreshes faster than the other.

Apple has previously stated that this jelly scrolling phenomenon is a typical behavior for LCD displays used in iPads. However, feedback indicates that this effect is more pronounced and potentially distracting on the iPad mini's compact screen. To mitigate this, Apple is reportedly considering rotating the screen assembly to lessen the jelly scrolling effect.

iPad mini 7 battery

The iPad mini lineup boasts an impressive battery life, which is unlikely to change with the iPad mini 7.

If we're to predict the battery on the tablet, it's best to look at the iPad mini 6, as these two are expected to be similar in design.

The iPad mini 6 packs a 5078 mAh capacity battery. This is roughly the size of a big phone's battery, so don't expect it to last as much as the iPad Pro models, which have up to twice the battery size. Even if the iPad mini 2024 doesn't offer a boost in the battery department, the single-day battery life on this small tablet is respectable, especially considering the power that it's packing.

iPad mini 7 features and software

We do not expect an M processor to power an iPad mini in 2024. Presumably, the iPad mini 7 will have a high-end A-series SoC at its heart — perhaps the A16 or A17. The tablet (if released in 2024), could come with iPadOS 18.

Should Apple decide to equip the iPad mini with the A17 chip, it would elevate the tablet to the same performance level as the iPhone 15 Pro models. Additionally, it is anticipated that the new iPad mini will feature support for Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.3, aligning it with the latest connectivity standards in recent Apple products like the iPhone 15 Pro and latest Macs. These advancements in wireless technology have already been integrated into the newest iPad Pro, iPhone 15 Pro models, and the majority of the latest Macs.

Should I wait for the iPad mini 7?

The iPad mini 2024 is looking like a minor upgrade with a new chipset, faster performance and other smaller improvements. However, it won’t get big upgrades like an OLED screen or 120Hz ProMotion. So if you already own the iPad mini 6, you probably won’t get too much out of an upgrade. Those big ticket items are likely to arrive in a future iPad mini that could arrive in 2026, if we were to guess.
However, if you own a much older iPad or you have decided to switch from a bigger iPad to a mini one, you might want to wait until this fall when this latest iPad mini 2024 is expected to arrive. Why not get the absolute best?

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