The rumours of a folding iPad just won't quit, but if you were expecting to see the iPad Fold launch as a replacement for the iPad mini then industry analyst Ming-Chi Kuo is here to pour cold water on that particular prediction. While Apple is indeed working on a new iPad mini, the next generation of Apple's smallest tablet isn't a folding one.
Posting on Twitter (opens in new tab), Kuo explained that "I think it's unlikely Apple will replace the iPad mini with a foldable iPad in 2025, which may be contrary to what some media previously predicted. It's because a foldable iPad will have a markedly higher price than an iPad mini, so such a replacement is not reasonable."
A new iPad mini is in development
According to Kuo, Apple is working on a new iPad mini to replace the current generation. The main selling point will be a much more powerful processor, and Kuo expects it to begin shipping in late 2023 or early 2024. The earlier date would fit with Apple's usual iPad release schedule, with new models often unveiled in the Autumn.
As ever, Apple's plans may change and everything Kuo is reporting could fall through or be rescheduled based on all kinds of factors – but I did laugh at one respondent to Kuo's post, who suggested that rather than reporting on Apple's plans and updating as they change, Kuo is just throwing out random predictions until something comes true.
"Apple will release a foldable iPhone til [sic] 2030 and I will update if they don't release!," the poster says. "ooo look mom I am leaker!" It's funny, but it's very unfair: Kuo is very well-connected and has a good track record in reporting upcoming Apple products. The reported fairly cautious timescale – a new iPad mini this year or next, and maybe a folding iPad some time afterwards – makes sense: just look at the timeline from when Apple's AR/VR headset first leaked in 2019 with predicted launch dates of 2020. Apple doesn't like to rush things.