Known Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has said that the Cupertino-based giant will launch an iPad with a mini-LED display and a new generation of the AirPods (AirPods 3) with a similar design to the AirPods Pro in the first half of next year. The TFI Securities analyst has predicted the new Apple products in a research note to investors, which was first seen by MacRumours. A mini-LED display uses 1,000 to 10,000 individual LEDs instead of a traditionally LED-backlit display, offering a similar performance of an OLED display.
According to the research note sourced by MacRumours, Kuo’s predictions relate to a Taiwanese company called Career Technology, which is expected to be a key partner in Apple’s supply chain for next year. Career Technology makes flexible Liquid Crystal Polymer (LCP) soft boards that are said to offer a flexible way to connect components together while facilitating high-speed, low latency data transfer. According to Kuo, Career Technologies is expected to regain orders for acoustic and optical components in soft boards for a mini-LED iPad, which the analyst says will be mass produced in the first half of 2021.
Further, Kuo said that Apple is working on a third generation of its truly wireless earphones, which may be called the AirPods 3. According to the research note, the new AirPods 3 will go into mass production in the first half of 2021. Further, the new AirPods may adopt the same system-in-package used for the AirPods Pro. This will replace the rigid-flex PCD+SMT design of the second-generation AirPods (with wireless charging). The AirPods 3 are also expected to be more affordable and may lack high-end features like Active Noise Cancellation, which could also mean a better battery life. The MacRumours report also said that Apple is working on a new wireless chip as well.
Kuo also noted that Career Technologies only will get component orders for the AirPods 3. He also predicts that Apple may use the soft board technology in the next year’s iPhone 13 as well.