Retina Display-Equipped iPad 3 to Launch in February?


The next iPad will be introduced in February according to a research note issued by Citi analyst Richard Gardner, obtained by Business Insider.

According to "several sources" the next iPad will launch in February, and it will sport a screen with double the resolution of the current model.

Gardner says, "there do not appear to be any significant technical hurdles remaining" to prevent a launch of a high-resolution iPad, despite rumors to the contrary.

Gardner's note echoes prior reports of a mid-Winter launch for the iPad 3.

Some reports had been suggesting that Apple's display suppliers were struggling with mass production of the higher-resolution 2048x1536 displays for the iPad 3, but reports over the past few weeks have indicated that the production is now moving along at Samsung, LG, and Sharp ahead of final iPad 3 assembly scheduled to begin next month at Foxconn.

One issue that has remains unclear is whether the iPad 3 will be thinner or slightly thicker than the iPad 2. Several sources have claimed that the iPad 3 will need to be slightly thicker due to the adoption of a dual light bar system to handle the significant jump in display resolution. But another report from late last month claimed that Apple will be utilizing a new display technology to support the high-resolution without requiring dual light bars, a development that will allow the iPad 3 to be slightly thinner than the current model.

Related Roundup: iPad
Buyer's Guide: iPad (Neutral)

Top Rated Comments

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111 months ago
To quote Seth Meyers from the iPad 2 launch, "just in time to make everyone feel bad about their Christmas present."
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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111 months ago
I really have no problem if it's slightly thicker than an iPad 2, especially if that added thickness can mean longer battery life or better performance.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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111 months ago
Who'd want to buy someone an iPad for christmas when a month or so later there's going to be an improved version out for the same $?

...oh. People not paying attention.

...which helps clear out the old stock. Makes sense I guess. ...kinda sucks though.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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111 months ago

Sounds good.

Although it should be noted that it WILL be slower than the iPad 2. It'll also take a fair while (1+ year) for most apps to get retina resolutions too for obvious reasons.


Both of those "facts" couldn't sound more like the opposite of the truth
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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111 months ago

Dual core Cortex A15 chips won't come out until late 2012, too late to be used in the iPad 3. I also think quad core isn't that great in a tablet, since there aren't a lot of background tasks and most apps aren't that well multi-threaded (if they even are at all).

Not true. Samsung's Exynos 5250 will launch in Q2 of next year on 32nm node. If Apple stays with Samsung, they could do the same. Historically, they've launched equally or before comparable Samsung SoCs built on the same node. (A4 beat Hummingbird, A5 beat Exynos 42xx in US launch).

Do expect the GPU to be bumped again, as we're talking about above 1080p HD resolutions here. I expect to see the MP4 variant of the PowerVR SGX 543 chip (iPad 2 currently uses MP2 variant), much like what's in the Playstation Vita, though with even higher clocks as well.

I disagree. That's pushing the power envelope without claiming anything back to save battery. I think the next move is to either shrink the 543 and clock it up or make the jump to Rogue cores.

I don't think a Q1 launch is likely given the availability of 32nm/28nm. Apple is pretty much running the tablet game right now, so I could see a February launch if they prioritized getting a retina iPad over everything else, but the benefits of waiting only a few months for a 28nm/32nm node to ramp up are hard to ignore from a battery standpoint, especially since you're talking about a display that is likely more power hungry.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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111 months ago
I'll get excited when it's announced.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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