Perhaps one of the most surprising things to come from Cupertino in 2018 was the resurrection of the Mac mini. But it looks like the first half of 2019 will see the reanimation of another mini. The iPad mini has been languishing in abandonment land for a while but the word from Apple's supply chain is that an updated iPad mini will appear along with a refreshed iPad with a larger 10-inch display.
2019 will see iOS 13 announced during Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference. The expectation is that this iteration of iOS will come with a major facelift, doing away with the apps-based interface and bringing a more information-centric interface. And it makes sense that the updated software will want to run on faster hardware than what was available in September 2015, when the iPad mini 4 was released.
The news on the new iPad mini comes from a Japanese supplier blog, saying Apple hopes the iPad mini 5 will slow the decline in sales of the iPad. And an updated iPad, with a larger 10-inch screen is also expected.
It would be surprising if the new iPad and iPad mini didn't ship with support for the new Apple Pencil 2 as well as FaceID and the current generation A12X processor. I suspect we can look at the new iPad Pro form factor, with slimmer bezels and the squared profile, and simply shrink that to the 10-inch and 7-inch display form factors.
That makes sense as it will mean the entire iPad range will have a common look and set of instructions. I can see an iPad mini with Apple Pencil support as a notepad replacement hat would work for many people. I've been using an iPad Pro in that way for a while and it works well but a smaller device would be ideal for me.