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Apple rumored to launch iPad Air alongside 'iPhone 12'

In a last-minute prediction, avid leaker Jon Prosser on Monday said Apple plans to kick off preorders of its recently announced iPad Air alongside "iPhone 12" models expected to debut this week.

Apple unveiled a redesigned iPad Air at the "Time Flies" event in September, but has yet to set a firm release date for the thin-and-light tablet. The device is listed as "Available in October" on Apple's website.

Speculation from industry watchers suggests Apple is reluctant to release a product powered by its new A14 chip ahead of "iPhone 12." The tech giant typically reserves introduction of new silicon for its flagship handset, but this year the iPad Air received the honor thanks to production delays caused by the ongoing coronavirus.

According to Prosser, iPad Air and "iPhone 12" might go up for preorder and arrive at customers' doorsteps at around the same time.

"It seems like Apple doesn't want the A14 in iPad Air to make it into people's hands before iPhone 12," Prosser said in a tweet. "Looks like they're going to be doing pre-orders and shipping iPad Air at the same time as iPhone 12"

The timeline squares with recent reports of Apple Stores receiving inventory of iPad Air units ahead of a start to sales.

Apple is widely anticipated to announce a next-generation "iPhone 12" lineup at a special event on Tuesday. Along with a range of new handsets, from "iPhone 12" to "iPhone 12 Pro Max," the company is rumored to unveil a "HomePod mini" speaker and a wireless charging puck.

AppleInsider will be covering the event live on Tueasday from 10 a.m. Pacific.