Apple's iPad range has undergone many changes across its 11-year history, but two things have remained constant: the smallest iPad has a 7.9in screen, and the biggest is 12.9in. Yet at least one of those eternal truths could be about to change.
Display analyst Ross Young (via MacRumors) has predicted that the next edition of the iPad mini will have a larger screen, increasing from its current (and historic) 7.9in to 8.3in. This won't make a huge difference to the viewing experience, but every square inch counts on smaller devices.
As a bonus, the size of the iPad itself will not be affected, as the bezels around the screen will become slimmer and the Home button will be removed entirely, freeing up space near the bottom of the device's front surface. It will remain a highly portable and pocketable tablet.
As we published earlier today, iPad mini 6 is 8.3".— Ross Young (@DSCCRoss) July 26, 2021
Young is a respected authority in his field, and in recent years has dipped his toe into the Apple predictions game with some success. In fact, his accuracy rating on AppleTrack at time of writing is a phenomenal 100% - but bear in mind that this is based on a very small sample size. Most of his predictions are currently classified as 'pending', with success or failure so far unknown.
The Home button part of this rumour is perhaps the most intriguing. There had been rumours that the upcoming iPad mini would stick with the older Home button design, but now most sources agree that it will have a similar (almost all-screen) design as the iPad Air (2020). This would leave the iPad 10.2in as the only iPad with a Home button.
The follow-up question, of course, is what happens to Touch ID with the Home button removed from the equation. It's possible that Apple will equip the new iPad mini with a Face ID facial scanner, but unlikely; we think it's more likely to get a fingerprint scanner in the power button, like the most recent iPad Air.
Sources differ on whether the new mini will get an A14 or A15 processor chip. However, there is a consensus that the Lightning port will be scrapped in favour of USB-C.
You can keep up with the latest rumours about Apple's smallest tablet in our regularly updated iPad mini 6 news hub. If you don't want to wait for the new model to arrive, check the lowest prices and most appealing discounts on the current range with our roundup of the best iPad deals.
This article originally appeared on Macworld Sweden. Translation and additional reporting by David Price.