Next-gen iPad could use new LED backlighting system to cut weight

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014
Adding to the bevy of rumors surrounding a next-generation iPad release, a report on Thursday says Apple will likely use a modified LED backlight apparatus in a bid to make the 9.7-inch tablet as thin and light as possible.

iPad


NPD DisplaySearch told CNET that it expects Apple's fifth-generation iPad to sport a more efficient LED array, as well as a change to film-based touch sensor technology, as the company slims down its largest tablet offering.

"It's likely that part of the thinner/lighter design will be reducing the size of the LED backlight, partly by making the display more efficient and partly by using more efficient LEDs," said analyst Paul Semenza.

Apple is widely expected to launch a redesigned 9.7-inch iPad with an aesthetic borrowed from the current iPad mini. Such a design was revealed in an image of a purportedly leaked next-gen iPad cover glass, which had thinner bezels and significantly modified dimensions in comparison with existing models.

Turning to display technology, Semenza said it's too soon to tell if the next-gen iPad will make the switch to more efficient IGZO panels. Rumors dating as far back as 2011 have Apple preparing to transition to the LCD tech, though such displays have yet to be used in the company's product lineups. Most recently, industry chatter has pointed to the inclusion of IGZO in this year's iPhone and iPad models, with the panels coming from Apple partner supplier Sharp.

Finally, Semenza said a third-quarter debut is most likely for the upcoming iPad. Prediction regarding the iPad's launch timeline have been highly varied, however, with some analysts claiming an October release, while other sources say the tablet could be unveiled this month.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 14


    I would like to know more about what makes this alleged LED backlight thinner. C'mon guys. Links please.

  • Reply 2 of 14
    mdriftmeyermdriftmeyer Posts: 7,281member
    Right. because it's too damn bulky as it current stands, right? Or perhaps newer LED tech allows as a byproduct a lighter substrate which helps offset the added battery life mass and more ICs on the logic boards?
  • Reply 3 of 14
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,896member


    Delete me...stupid comment on my part. 

  • Reply 4 of 14
    ankleskaterankleskater Posts: 1,287member
    New backlighting technology to make the iPad slimmer? The only thing that comes to mind is edge-lit backlight.
  • Reply 5 of 14
    gtrgtr Posts: 3,231member


    They're making another iPad?


     


    That's AWESOME news!!!

  • Reply 6 of 14
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    New backlighting technology to make the iPad slimmer? The only thing that comes to mind is edge-lit backlight.

    I'm thinking…

    1. Better display tech that allows more light to pass through.
    2. Better incorporation of panel that allows more light to pass through.
    3. Brighter backlight tech for a given power requirement (cuts battery size).
    4. Move from two backlights to one based on one or multiple items above.
  • Reply 7 of 14
    timbittimbit Posts: 331member
    I hope this iPad is stellar (like all the others have been). I've always wanted to get an iPad but haven't been able to justify the expense. Now that I'm done school and working, I can look at getting a new toy!
  • Reply 8 of 14
    cash907cash907 Posts: 893member


    The weight has never been an issue for me, but I wouldn't mind one with a thinner bezel, like the iPad Mini has. Just seems like so much wasted space.

  • Reply 9 of 14
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,154member
    Right. because it's too damn bulky as it current stands, right?

    Compared to the mini, yes it is.
  • Reply 10 of 14
    pokepoke Posts: 506member


    If it's going to be thinner and lighter, this is how they'll do it. As I understand it, the iPad 3 retina display required a more powerful backlight because of the pixel density, and the backlight is the part of the display that consumes the most energy, so it needed a bigger battery too. Use a more efficient backlight solution and you can reduce the battery and hence the size and weight of the device. The two heaviest components in an iPad are the glass and the battery. I don't think they're using the latest version of Gorilla Glass so they can probably lose some weight there too. Thickness is dependent mainly on the battery, but they could also reduce the thickness of the display (as they did using in-cell touch sensors on the iPhone) and the glass.


     


    The iPad really needs to be as light and thin as possible.

  • Reply 11 of 14
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,215member
    New backlighting technology to make the iPad slimmer? The only thing that comes to mind is edge-lit backlight.

    I call BS on this. Or rather the notion that everything Apple does is to go thinner.

    I think they might be looking at better backlight options to have better lighting, less battery, both etc. and it might have the icing of being lighter.
  • Reply 12 of 14
    jonshfjonshf Posts: 88member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by poke View Post


    If it's going to be thinner and lighter, this is how they'll do it. As I understand it, the iPad 3 retina display required a more powerful backlight because of the pixel density, and the backlight is the part of the display that consumes the most energy, so it needed a bigger battery too. Use a more efficient backlight solution and you can reduce the battery and hence the size and weight of the device. The two heaviest components in an iPad are the glass and the battery. I don't think they're using the latest version of Gorilla Glass so they can probably lose some weight there too. Thickness is dependent mainly on the battery, but they could also reduce the thickness of the display (as they did using in-cell touch sensors on the iPhone) and the glass.


     


    The iPad really needs to be as light and thin as possible.



    If they can make it thinner, lighter and also significantly trim the side bezels as the rumors are suggesting, that would be quite a feat. It almost seems impossible.

  • Reply 13 of 14
    satchsatch Posts: 19member
    How about getting rid of that silly, inefficient, horrible glossy screen gamed up by the marketing dept., and going back to anti-glare on ALL Mac/i-devices!
  • Reply 14 of 14

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jonshf View Post


    If they can make it thinner, lighter and also significantly trim the side bezels as the rumors are suggesting, that would be quite a feat. It almost seems impossible.



    I remember when the price of $499 was considered impossible... most bets were that it would run between $800 to $1000. When the $499 price was announced you could hear netbook CEOs throwing up in their wastebaskets all over the world.

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