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New 13-inch iPad Air will eat into iPad Pro sales

New iPad Pro (source: Apple)

A new report predicts that sales of the new iPad Pro will be affected both by its higher price than before, and by the appeal for consumers of the lower-cost 13-inch iPad Air.

Trendforce has previously and rather obviously predicted that if Apple releases iPad Pro models with OLED screens, it would drop the previous versions that had mini LED displays. Now that Apple has done exactly this, Trendforce has released a report estimating the potential sales of the new iPad range.

The report from market research firm Trendforce is really focused on AMOLED (Active Matrix Organic Light Emitting Diode) screens. This is the slight but significant variant of OLED that lets the iPad Pro control every individual pixel, and also do so while consuming less power.

Trendforce's focus, then, is on how it estimates that the total number of AMOLED screens shipped in any company's devices in 2025 will be approximately 9 million. It says that this represents around 7% of the total tablet market.

For Apple in particular, though, Trendforce estimates that the company will ship between 4.5 million and 5 million of the iPad Pro in 2024. That's a combined total for the 11-inch and 13-inch models of the iPad Pro together.

Trendforce does not appear to have published any previous estimates for Apple's sales, but says its new prediction is reduced to between 4.5 million and 5 million figure is a reduction. Its analysts say they are predicting this lower figure in part because of the new iPad Air.

For the first time, there is a 13-inch version of the iPad Air and Trendforce believes this could dilute consumer interest in the iPad Pro. In their base specifications, Apple sells the 13-inch iPad Pro from $1,299, while the 13-inch iPad Air starts at $799.

As Trendforce notes, that iPad Pro price is $200 more than the previous model. It ascribes that increase entirely to the screen, and in particular how Apple has used what it's calling tandem OLED technology to avoid the burn-in and shorter life previously associated with AMOLED.

So the combination of a higher-price iPad Pro and a new 13-inch iPad Air will be responsible for lowering the sales of the Pro model. Again, though, Trendforce does not say by how much, just that it will be "only" 4.5 million to 5 million in 2024.

However, a previous estimate claimed to be from supply chain sources said that Apple has ordered 8.5 million OLED display panels for 2024.