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Is this the first look at iPad 5?

Date

Salvador Rodriguez

Zoom in on this story. Explore all there is to know.

Leaked ... the photo of the rumoured iPad 5 back panel.

Leaked ... the photo of the rumoured iPad 5 back panel.

It's not much at all, but a look at what could be the back of the next iPad is creating a lot of buzz among Apple fans.

Apple news website 9 to 5 Mac posted images of a black iPad back plate that looks a lot like the iPad mini but is the size of the larger iPad.

To most people, this won't mean much, but to legions of Apple fans it may be the first sign that the iPad will undergo its first major redesign since it came out in 2011.

According to the report, the image was provided by a "purported China-based iPad accessory maker" that said the part belonged to a fifth-generation iPad prototype.

Although 9 to 5 Mac said it couldn't confirm if the part was actually for an upcoming iPad, the images were enough to cause dozens of news sites to write about it and speculate on what it could mean for Apple and its fans.

If the part is authentic, it suggests the next iPad might be as thin as the iPad mini.

The next iPad was originally rumoured to be released in March, but more recent rumours suggest an October launch.

We'll have to wait and see if Apple releases a full-size iPad with that type of slim design, but in the meantime, the company has confirmed it will be rolling out a 128GB version of its current fourth-generation iPad.

That model goes on sale February 5 for $869 for the wi-fi-only version and $1009 for the wi-fi and mobile data model.

Los Angeles Times

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