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The iPad Pro 2024 could get a new camera to fix its wonky video calls

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It’s been a while since Apple has launched a new iPad, with the latest model going back as far as October 2022. That situation has provided plenty of fodder for the rumor mill, and the latest idea is that the upcoming iPad Pro will move its front-facing camera to the side of the device.

That information comes from a leaker known as Instant Digital on the Chinese social media platform Weibo (via MacRumors). According to Instant Digital, the iPad Pro’s TrueDepth camera system will move to the right-hand side of the tablet. The microphone array, meanwhile, will be centered at the top of the device.

Why is Apple apparently going to make this move? It all comes down to video calls. Past iPads have put the front-facing camera on the top edge of the tablet. When you use the iPad like a laptop in landscape mode and join a video call, it means you have to awkwardly look at the side of your device (rather than the top, where your eyes would naturally go) in order to look into the camera. It’s a clumsy situation that could be easily avoided by Apple moving the camera’s position.

Now, it looks like that’s exactly what the company is planning on doing. And if we’re being honest, it’s a long-overdue move on Apple’s part – but better late than never.

Mounting evidence

iPad Air 10.9-inch 2022 tablet with a keyboard

(Image credit: Future)

Instant Digital’s claim isn’t the only instance of a rumor asserting that this change is imminent. Earlier in March 2024, Instant Digital announced that the iPad Air would also get a side-mounted camera.

As well as that, code discovered in iOS 17.4 revealed that the change could indeed be coming to the iPad Pro. Among the code snippets was this tidbit: “During Face ID setup, iPad needs to be in landscape with the camera at the top of the screen.” The latest entry-level iPad is the only one with a landscape camera, but it doesn’t have Face ID – that’s reserved for the iPad Pro, suggesting this code was referencing one of Apple’s unreleased top-end tablets.

A landscape camera is not the only thing we’re expecting in the new iPad Pro. Other rumors suggest it might come with a larger display, an OLED panel, an upgraded chip and more. That could make it a sizeable improvement over the current model.

When it finally arrives, it will put an end to an excruciatingly long wait for updates. The latest iPad upgrades came in October 2022, and 2023 was the first year without new iPads since the product launched in 2010. Here’s hoping Apple puts that drought behind it by launching new models as soon as possible.

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