Apple fans may get their first look at the third-generation iPad on March 7. That’s the date that the company reportedly has circled on the calendar for its next big product unveiling, widely expected to be the coming-out party for the iPad 3.
Naturally, this hasn’t been confirmed officially—Apple hasn’t even said publicly that it’s got a follow-up to its hugely successful tablet in the works—but the March 7 date was reported Monday by the iMore blog, citing “sources who have been reliable in the past.”
Possibly corroborating the rumor is an All Things D report from last week that tipped an early March announcement of the new iPad. There’s also the fact that Apple chose Wednesdays for the past two iPad reveals, so if that pattern holds and the “early March” rumor is true, the company’s pretty much stuck with March 7 or nothing.
The iMore post also states confidently that the iPad 3 will have a 2048-by-1536 Retina display and pack a new quad-core processor, the A6, a step up from the dual-core part in the iPad 2. The next-gen tablet may or may not have 4G LTE, according to the blog.
Earlier rumors have also pointed to a new quad-core chip and LTE wireless functionality for Apple’s next tablet. In January, 9to5Mac.com unearthed references to core management capabilities for quad-core processors buried within Apple’s iOS 5.1 beta code.
The iPad 3 rumor mill was in full swing Monday, with another report claiming that Apple has built a tablet that’s slightly thicker and has a better camera than the iPad 2.
Asian parts reseller iLab Factory posted on its website images of what it says may be some of the components of the iPad 3, including a high-resolution LCD screen manufactured by Sharp, a back plate with an Apple logo, and a 30-pin dock connector.
The site notes that the purported back plate for the iPad 3 is a tad thicker than the one used on the iPad 2, meaning the next-generation tablet may grow about one millimeter in profile, but will remain the same length and width.
For more, see PCMag’s full review of the iPad 2 and the slideshow below.
With additional reporting by Angela Moscaritolo.