Working with leaker xleaks, accessories manufacturer Pigtou created a concept design of the supposedly upcoming iPad mini 6, which looks like it borrows heavily from the new iPad Air's aesthetic. But the range of upgrades it will apparently come with, most notably an in-display version of Touch ID, looks a little too good to be true.
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Pigtou claims the iPad mini 6 is set to be roughly the same size as the iPad Mini 5, but with much smaller bezels and a larger overall screen. 195mm x 126.6mm according to the site, which would give the tablet roughly a display size of around 9 inches.
What’s more, Pigtou claims that the tablet will come with an in-display fingerprint scanner and a hole-punch camera, the first time Apple has adopted any of these. Which makes us skeptical, and not just because the included renders feature a cut-out home button rather than a true under-display fingerprint scanner like you’d see on the Samsung Galaxy S21.
The idea that Apple is working on such a feature is not new, and rumors date back to before the launch of the iPhone X — the phone that first ditched Touch ID in favor of Face ID. With that in mind, and the fact reintroducing Touch ID in this way would be a very big deal, these claims seem surprising, if not dubious.
Normally, that sort of high-end feature is kept aside for the iPhone, or at a stretch, the iPad Pro. Both are premium devices that demand a high price tag, and new technology inevitably costs money to include. The iPad mini 6 isn’t really the place to throw in that sort of thing, even if under-display fingerprint scanners have become more commonplace over the past two years.
That’s not to say Apple won’t include Touch ID on the iPad mini 6. Even if it does scrap the Home button, the iPad Air 4 has already proven Apple can now add Touch ID to the power button. Not only would doing that free up space for a full-screen design, it also would mean that Apple could stick to a simple hole-punch camera and not carve out a notch for Face ID’s many components.
iPad mini 6: What we’d like to see
A full-screen design on a budget iPad would be a big step forward, however, notch or not. We have been seeing bezels shrink further and further over the past several years, to the point where full-screen devices are pretty much standard on mid-range and budget devices.
It would also be nice to keep Touch ID around, especially since there are lots of rumors suggesting it may be included with the iPhone 13. After all, it would be strange to strip one long-standing feature from a tablet, only to reintroduce it on a flagship device a few months later.
We'd definitely like to see the iPad mini 6 with the latest A14 Bionic chipset. But that's a tricky one to predict as sometimes Apple will equip it's cheaper iPads with slightly older but still capable chips, or give the very latest silicon. If the iPad mini 6 arrives later on in the year then it could come with the A15 chip that the iPhone 13 is expected to have.
USB-C connectivity would also be a welcome addition. Apple’s iPad Pro has already ditched Lightning for the more-standardized port, though cheaper devices have kept going with the same over 8-year-old connector. While the iPhone 13 is rumored to have at least one portless model and skipping over USB-C entirely, it probably won’t happen to cheaper iPads for some time.
Of course, the next iPad Air would also need USB-C if the iPad Mini has any hopes of getting it as well. Not that we’d be complaining.
And while we’re asking for things, support for the 2nd-gen Apple Pencil would be nice. Because it’s pretty weird that Apple doesn’t have some sort of uniformity when it comes to its stylus.
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