Apple’s latest iPad Pro has only been available in Malaysia for just over two months, but we’re already hearing about Apple’s plans for the tablet two years down the road. While the 12.9-inch iPad Pro currently has a class-leading mini-LED display, it seems OLED displays will be on their tablets as early as next year.
According to The Elec, the Cupertino-based company is looking to introduce a tablet with a 10.86-inch OLED display in 2022. It doesn’t specify which exact model in their iPad lineup, but judging by the screen size, it is likely to be a new iPad Air. The current 4th generation iPad Air has a 10.9-inch Liquid Retina display, but because it has rounded corners, when measured diagonally the screen is actually 10.86 inches.
Meanwhile, the report adds that we’ll be seeing two other Apple tablets with OLED displays in 2023, one 11-inch and one 12.9-inch in size. These two screen sizes would be more in line with the current iPad Pro sizes which are also 11-inch and 12.9-inch in size. It’s also said that the 2023 OLED panels will be different than the 2022 iPad Air’s OLED display.
The 2022 OLED likely is a rigid OLED panel while the 2023 pair will get flexible OLED panels. Apple has already been using flexible OLED panels since the iPhone X debut in 2017, which is more expensive but allows for a thinner bezel design.
This would be Apple’s first time placing an OLED panel in something bigger than their iPhones and Watches. Although Apple has gone for the mini-LED display in the 12.9-inch iPad Pro, their other tablets still use LCD panels. Mini-LED panels however is still quite new and expensive to make. This could be why if Apple did indeed want upgrade the mid-tier iPad Air, a rigid OLED display makes more sense than going mini-LED. Apple could also offer multiple display options, allowing people to choose between OLED or mini-LED.
So far though, we haven’t had any confirmation from Apple that they will be dropping LCD panels for OLED displays anytime soon. But this isn’t the first time we’ve heard rumours of Apple changing their tablet displays, and by the looks of things probably won’t be the last either.