iPad Pro
The iOS 11.3 beta includes multiple strings of code that mentions a "modern iPad," which might be a reference to the 2018 iPad Pro with Face ID. REUTERS/Stephen Lam

It’s been reported previously that Apple may launch a new iPad Pro model in 2018 and that it could arrive with the iPhone X’s Face ID feature. Now, a code in the iOS 11.3 beta includes references to a new iPad model suggesting that those rumors may be true.

Felipe Espositio from iHelp shared on Twitter strings of code he discovered that mention a device simply referred to as “modern iPad.” The iOS 11 pre-release betas also referenced “modern iPhone” prior to the release of the iPhone X. 9To5Mac pointed out that Apple used “modern” to differentiate the hardware between the iPhone 8 and the iPhone X. The biggest difference between those two phones, apart from design and the display, was that the iPhone X featured Face ID while the 8 featured Touch ID.

It’s now being speculated that the “modern iPad” being referenced in the iOS 11.3 beta is the new 2018 model of the iPad Pro that will come with Face ID. This is in line with KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo's prediction that Face ID would become available to iPad Pros in 2018.

So what does this mean for the iPad Pro home button? It’s also been reported previously that Apple may ditch the home button on the 10.5-inch 2018 iPad Pro. This also means that Apple wants Face ID to become the sole biometrics system on its flagship iOS devices. The 2018 iPad Pro will go through a major redesign but fans shouldn’t expect an OLED display. The popular rumor right now is that the new iPad Pro will still have an LCD panel as Apple is facing “technical and financial constraints” in bringing OLED displays to the iPad.

One of the most divisive things about the iPhone X is the display notch. The notch on the iPhone X houses the TrueDepth camera system which makes Face ID possible. It remains unclear if Apple is planning to bring the notch to the 2018 iPad Pro.

The rumored 2018 iPad Pro model with Face ID is also expected to arrive with an 8-core A11X Bionic processor, an enhanced version of the A11 Bionic chip in the iPhone X and iPhone 8. The A11X is said to feature an additional two cores and that it could have a next-generation M11 coprocessor and neural engine, which makes Face ID a possibility on the new iPad Pro.