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Apple may unveil 2 next-generation iPads in January

Apple Inc. may unveil two versions of the next generation of its popular iPad tablet computer in January, a Taiwan-based tech site reported

DPA, Friday 30 Dec 2011
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Photo: Reuters
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DigiTimes cited its supply chain sources who said the two versions will be unveiled at the iWorld scheduled for January 26, 2012.

"The new models will join the existing iPad 2 to demonstrate Apple's complete iPad series targeting the entry-level, mid-range and high-end market segments," it quoted its sources as saying.

According to the DigiTimes report, the iPad 2 will compete directly with Amazon's Kindle Fire in the budget-price market segment.

On the other hand, the new models will focus on the mid- and high-end segments.

DigiTimes said Apple officials have so far declined to comment.

Upcoming models

Instead of the previously-rumored 7.85-inch, the upcoming iPad models will still feature 9.7-inch screens but come with QXGA resolution (1536-x-2048 pixels), DigiTimes quoted its sources as saying.

Dual-LED light bars are designed for the new iPads to strengthen the brightness of the panels, the sources added.

Sharp will be the major panel supplier for Apple's next-generation iPad series, while Samsung Electronics and LG Display will also be tapped for part of the orders.

The sources also said Minebea, from which Sharp sources backlight units (BLUs), has accordingly entered the supply chain for the new iPads.

Meanwhile, Apple continues to tap Samsung to make its quad-core A6 processors for the next-generation iPads. The iPad 2 is based on the dual-core A5.

On the other hand, Samsung is also among the CMOS image sensor (CIS) suppliers for one of the two new iPads, which will have a 5-megapixel lens.

This will be Samsung's first time to get CIS orders from Apple, the sources said.

The sources added Sony will be the other CIS supplier for the other model with a higher 8-megapixel lens.

Simplo Technology and Dynapack International Technology have received orders for batteries that will have a capacity of as high as 14,000 milliampere-hour (mAh) for the new iPads, the sources added

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