Apple's next-generation iPad Mini model expected to launch later this year could be the last one, giving way to the more powerful iPad Pro.

The tablet scene has become increasingly crowded and more competitive in recent times, and Apple is expected to significantly up its game this year. The company is widely expected to unveil a large 12.9-inch iPad Pro sometime in November, packing powerful specs and features all around.

The general assumption was that new iterations would grace the iPad Mini and iPad Air lineups as well, but a new report now suggests otherwise. More specifically, the Economic Daily News now claims (translated), that Apple will unveil the highly-anticipated iPad Pro, as well as a new-generation iPad Mini, but no iPad Air, as Macotakara points out (translated).

Fubon Hardware investment advisor Liaoxian Li apparently believes that Apple may want to focus on the more powerful iPad Pro rather than on other iPad models. Consequently, Apple will reportedly instruct Foxconn, its main assembly partner, to focus on the iPad Pro, in the detriment of the new iPad Air.

If Apple does indeed plan to skip a new iPad Air unveiling this year, it could mean that an iPad Air 3 may not see the light of day until 2016.

At the same time, the report notes that a new-generation iPad Mini will make its debut this year, but it may be the last one. The reasoning behind this strategy is that Apple reportedly wants to focus on the iPad Pro and iPad Air in the future.

The 2014 iPad Mini update left many fans rather disappointed, as Touch ID was virtually the only major upgrade it added over the existing iPad Mini 2. The 2015 iPad Mini iteration, however, is expected to rock more notable upgrades. If the upcoming iPad Mini model will indeed be the last one in the lineup, it will be interesting to see what Apple has in mind.

On the other hand, it's all in the rumor state at this point, which means that nothing is certain just yet. Economic Times has a mixed track record when it comes to the accuracy of its leaks and rumors, so it's highly advisable to take this report with a hefty grain of salt.

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