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Apple announces new $499 10.5-inch iPad Air, refreshes $399 iPad Mini – CNET

The 2019 iPad Air and iPad Mini.

Apple

One week before it's expected to lift the curtain on a long-rumored video streaming service at an event on March 25, Apple announced two new iPads. Starting at $499, the new iPad Air features a 10.5-inch Retina display and the same A12 Bionic processor used in the iPhone XS. The new $399 iPad Mini will replace the aging iPad Mini 4, which had been left virtually unchanged by Apple since its debut in 2015. The new models are now available for pre-order and will be in stores next week.

The 2019 iPad Air 

The new iPad Air sits between the 9.7-inch iPad introduced last year, which starts at $329, and the 11-inch iPad Pro, which starts at $799 and features a more powerful A12X processor. The company has now discontinued the older 10.5-inch iPad Pro from 2017. Apple hadn't released an "Air" version of the iPad since switching over to the plain old "iPad" in 2017.

The new iPad Air with Apple's smart keyboard and Pencil.

Ap

Here's a rundown of the 2019 iPad Air's specs:

  • 10.5-inch Retina display (2,224x1,668 pixel resolution), 500 nits
  • 8-megapixel camera, 7-megapixel FaceTime camera
  • Support for the original Apple Pencil (not the newer one announced in October)
  • A12 Bionic processor with Neural Engine, M12 coprocessor
  • 64GB or 256GB of storage
  • Support for eSIM
  • Rated for 10 hours of battery life
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Touch ID
  • Lightning connector
  • Weighs 1.0 pounds (Wi-Fi + cellular model weighs 1.02 pounds)
  • Available in Space Gray, silver and gold
  • Starts at $499

The 2019 iPad Mini

The new iPad Mini.

Apple

The new iPad Mini has the same basic design as the iPad Mini 4, with the same 7.9-inch display and the same broad bezels. It doesn't have Face ID or USB-C ports -- major upgrades found on other recent Apple tablets -- though it has a much faster A12 processor. That chip will surely give the new model a significant performance advantage over its predecessor, which used the same A8 chip as the 2014-era iPhone 6. The new model retains the previous model's 3.5mm headphone jack and Lightning port -- two features that Apple excluded from last year's batch of iPad Pros

Here's a rundown of the 2019 iPad Mini's specs:

  • 7.9-inch Retina display (2,048x1,536 pixel resolution)
  • 64GB or 256GB of storage
  • A12 Bionic processor with Neural Engine, M12 coprocessor
  • 8-megapixel camera, 7-megapixel FaceTime camera
  • Support for the original Apple Pencil (not the newer one announced in October)
  • Touch ID
  • Lightning connector
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • Support for eSIM
  • Weighs 0.66 pounds (Wi-Fi + cellular model weighs 0.68 pounds)
  • Available in Space Gray, silver and gold
  • Starts at $399

Apple often introduces new products in March. At last year's event, Apple delivered a refreshed edition of its entry-level iPad in addition to some education-friendly software initiatives. That today's announcement was made by press release suggests that the company wants to keep the focus of next week's event solely on its new video streaming service.

Earlier this morning, Apple's online store went offline, suggesting that new products would be announced later in the day.

This is a developing story.

Apple Event

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