The New Best iPad in 2022

The New Best iPad in 2022

The New Best iPad in 2022

The new iPad for 2022 hasn’t been rumored much just yet, but that’s okay – Apple’s entry-level line of tablets rarely sees the pre-release attention of big-ticket siblings like the iPad Pro (2021), iPad Air (2021) or iPad Mini (2022), but it’s still equally exciting.

This range of iPads is designed for people who don’t need loads of processing power, huge screens or fancy features, but just need an easy-to-use low-cost slate that’ll serve them well. The iPad 10.2 (2021) did just this last year, but we normally see this slate line refreshed each year.

Some of Apple’s tablets are rumored to be getting big upgrades in 2022, but we’re not expecting the entry-level iPad to see that love – each generation usually only brings minor tweaks, not big reinventions.

There’s little in the way of news about Apple’s next entry-level slate yet, but we can predict some things, and you’ll find those below, covering the possible release date, price, and some of the specs and features.

Then further down we’ve included a wish list of what we want to see from the new iPad 2022 to make it the best budget iPad possible. And make sure to check back regularly, as we’ll be updating this article whenever we hear any news or rumors about this tablet.

Cut to the chase

  • What is it? The next cheap tablet from Apple
  • When is it out? Probably September 2022
  • How much will it cost? Likely around $329 / £319 / AU$499

New iPad 2022 release date and price

We don’t know when the new iPad 2022 will be announced but we can take a good guess, as the iPad 10.2 (2021) was unveiled on September 14, the iPad 10.2 (2020) was announced on September 15 of its launch year, and the iPad 10.2 (2019) on September 12. You’re probably noticing a pattern here.

They were all announced around the middle of September, and in the last two years they were also announced on a Tuesday, so if we had to get more specific we’d guess the new iPad 2022 will be announced on Tuesday September 13, 2022.

The time between announcement and availability is more variable, but it’s unlikely to be more than a couple of weeks, so we’d think the new iPad 2022 would hit stores before the end of September 2022, and possibly even within a few days of its announcement.

As for the price, the iPad 10.2 (2021) starts at $329 / £319 / AU$499, and the iPad 10.2 (2020) had a similar starting price, so we’d think roughly the same again is likely, but there’s no news on that yet.

The back of the Apple iPad 10.2 (2021) on a pile of books

Expect a similar price to the iPad 10.2 (2021) (Image credit: TechRadar)

News and leaks

There’s no news yet on the new iPad 2022, but one thing we can be fairly confident of is that it will stick with an LCD screen.

There was some suggestion that Apple might switch to OLED for the iPad Air 5, but recent reports suggest that isn’t happening, and either way there was no mention of the basic iPad getting this display tech.

There also probably won’t be any significant changes to the front-facing camera, as that’s only just had a big upgrade for the latest model.

The chipset is sure to be better though, with Apple likely to equip the new iPad 2022 with the A14 Bionic from the iPhone 12 range based on past form.

Two things that could go either way are the design, which might be modernized in line with all Apple’s other iPad ranges, and 5G, which may or may not be included. We’d think by 2022 it will be due, but the iPad Air 4 (2020) doesn’t have 5G either, so Apple might add that to the iPad Air 5 but leave it off the basic iPad for another year.

What we want to see

To make the new iPad 2022 as good as possible we want it to have the following things.

1. Face ID

The lack of Face ID on the new iPad 10.2 (2021) isn’t overly surprising given that Apple currently reserves this tech for the iPad Pro range. But over in iPhone land it’s basically now a standard feature and has been for years, so we’d like to see the company make it standard on iPads too.

We don’t particularly expect the new iPad 2022 to get Face ID, since it will presumably be last in line for it, with the iPad Air and iPad mini ranges likely to get it first, but it would be nice to see.

This tech has been around so long that it doesn’t feel like it should need to be a premium feature anymore, so Apple, stop holding it back.

2. A modern design

The basic iPad range is now alone in being the only tablet range from Apple that doesn’t include a modern design with smaller bezels and no home button, with even the iPad mini (2021) sporting this look.

Instead, you’re stuck with a very dated and relatively cheap appearance on the iPad 10.2 (2021), and it’s one that we want to see gone with the new iPad 2022.

3. Support for recent accessories

The Apple iPad 10.2 (2021) with the smart keyboard attached, with an Apple Pencil resting on the keyboard, outside

The iPad 10.2 (2021) has limited accessory support (Image credit: TechRadar)

The iPad 10.2 (2021) supports the original Apple Pencil and the Smart Keyboard, but it lacks support for the Apple Pencil 2 and the Magic Keyboard, making it less good both for typing and sketching than it could be – or than other Apple tablets are.

Supporting these accessories shouldn’t be hard, and we wouldn’t think they’d add much if anything to Apple’s costs, so there’s really no reason to block the iPad 2022 off from them.

4. Recalibrating speakers

The iPad 10.2 (2021) doesn’t have bad speakers, but unlike the iPad mini (2021) and the iPad Air 4, they don’t recalibrate based on the orientation of the tablet.

With one of those tablets then you’ll be getting the best from the speakers whether you use the slate in portrait or landscape orientation, but not here. Hopefully, Apple fixes that for the next model.

5. 128GB base size

With the iPad 10.2 (2021) Apple upgraded the base storage size from the pathetically tiny 32GB of the iPad 10.2 (2020), to a still rather small 64GB.

We know this is a cheap slate, so the company wants to keep the cost down as much as possible, but 64GB is a just barely acceptable amount of storage in 2021, let alone 2022 when the next model is expected. So we want to see the new iPad 2022 start with 128GB of storage, especially as there’s no microSD card slot.