iPad Pro next-generation line-up will reportedly support 5G mmWave technology seen on current generation iPhone 12 models in the US. This technology is expected to offer faster speeds than sub-6GHz 5G at short distances. A new report suggests that Apple is actively developing its own in-house mmWave AiP (antenna in package) to integrate it into more of its portfolio, apart from iPhone handsets. While this technology was offered only to US citizens this year with the iPhone 12 range, a wider rollout of the technology could be seen next year.
In its report, DigiTimes cited sources who said that high-end iPad Pro models expected to launch in 2021 should offer 5G networks with mmWave support. It cites its sources to claim that Apple has been successful in developing its own mmWave AiP modules, and this feat could help the Cupertino giant push the new technology on other products – like the next-gen iPad models. While the report doesn't explicitly say that the iPad Pro range will get 5G mmWave support, Apple traditionally introduces high-end features first in ‘Pro' range. Other iPad models in Apple's portfolio should also get support eventually.
“The self-sufficiency in design and development of AiP modules also means that Apple's next-generation high-end iPad products to be released in 2021 may also come with mmWave technology,” the report cites its sources as saying.
With the success of developing AiP modules, the report says that Apple is moving one step further to developing RF front-end (RF-FEM) modules in-house. The company reportedly aims to supply its own modems in the future.
Past reports claim that Apple is shifting its next-gen iPad Pro lineup to OLED displays. The high-end iPad Pro model will possibly include mini-LED display technology as well. Mini-LED displays use individual LEDs to produce the picture in a similar manner to OLED displays. It is said to be less expensive to manufacture and Apple is expected to push the new display technology on its iPad range first. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo predicted that the next-gen iPad Pro range may launch sometime in the first half of next year.
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