I’m not buying the rumors of an A7 CPU in the iPad mini 2

OK, so the rumor sites are claiming that the iPad mini 2 will have an A7X chip for its CPU. I’m not buying it.

Why?

At its current price point—$329—Apple couldn’t possibly make its high margins on hardware while putting the latest and greatest chip in an iPad mini.

When the current mini was released last year, it had a previous generation chip in it, so that’s what I’m predicting for the new mini. It would still be plenty fast, and twice as fast as the existing mini, with an iPhone 5-class CPU (A6X), the same CPU as the current (4th) generation full-size iPad..

(A quick reminder: the X chips, such as A6X and A5X are the same as the regular A6 and A5 except they have twice the graphics power because they are powering the large, high-density Retina screens on the iPads. The iPhones have much smaller Retina screens and thus don’t need as much graphics horsepower. That being said, the A7 chip already has a quad-core graphics processing unit (GPU), so I wonder if there will need to be an X chip this time around?)

For the same reason (Apple’s high margins), I’m not sure the iPad mini will have the Touch ID fingerprint detector that the iPhone 5S and presumably full-size iPad will have.

Just as Intel targets the enterprise with its i7 chips with security features, I think Apple will push the most expensive iPhone and iPad models on the enterprise with Touch ID. This leaves the iPhone 5C and iPad mini aimed more at consumers, which happens to match my own usage patterns: the iPad mini tends to be more a consumption device, while the full size iPad tends more to be a productivity device.

So don’t expect the world when Apple announces new iPads next month. Keep your expectations in check. And plan your enterprise roll outs accordingly.

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2 thoughts on “I’m not buying the rumors of an A7 CPU in the iPad mini 2

  1. Peter says:

    “A quick reminder: the X chips, such as A6X and A5X are the same as the regular A6 and A5 except they have twice the graphics power because they are powering the large, high-density Retina screens on the iPads.”

    But the iPad mini does not have a large high-density retina screen. It’s 1024 x 768.

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