Over the past few days, Digitimes has posted a series of rumors from its own supply chain sources and other reports out of Asia discussing a number of modifications reportedly being made by Apple on the third-generation iPad. Apple is said to already be making some of the changes, with a public launch of the revised model set for later this year. The changes include:
- As we mentioned in passing earlier this week, Digitimes last week cited a report from Taiwanese publication Apple Daily claiming that Apple is preparing to shift to thinner indium gallium zinc oxide (IGZO) display technology for the third-generation iPad. Apple had been rumored to be using IGZO in the new iPad in the months leading up to its launch, but the panels were not ready in time.
- Just yesterday, Digitimes reported that Apple has already made several tweaks to the third-generation iPad, enlarging the lens hole for the camera and modifying the battery. The changes to the battery are said to be intended to reduce overheating while also allowing for a lighter and thinner design.
The sources said the new iPad's battery is being revised, which will help prevent overheating issues and could possibly make the device slightly lighter and thinner than previously designed. However, no comments were offered as to why the lens is being enlarged.
The report also reiterates claims of IGZO displays coming to the iPad, with the revised models reportedly set for launch in time for the holiday shopping season later this year.
- And now today Digitimes is reporting that Apple is also moving from two LED backlight units to one, an effort that will reduce overheating and along with the battery changes will support the thinner design.
The extra LED is reportedly adding to overheating and that using one LED will help solve overheating issues since more backlights along with more power to heat those backlights is causing overheating.
Sources noted that the one LED backlight module, however, will not affect luminosity and clarity of Apple's Retina Display.
Taken together, all of the changes cited by Digitimes would make for much more than a mere tweak of the existing iPad design, and it seems extremely unlikely that Apple will release an updated model of the iPad before the end of the year.
Many readers may remember that similar claims of a shorter upgrade cycle for the iPad surfaced last year, only to see Apple continue its yearly upgrade cycle and wait until early 2012 to introduce the third-generation iPad.
Digitimes has been under fire in recent months due to its increasing reporting of rumors that have turned out to be inaccurate. While the site has occasionally offered very accurate information, it has become increasingly difficult to determine which claims to believe.
While talk of an "iPad mini" launch later this year has been ramping up, it seems hard to believe that Apple will be making any changes to the current 9.7-inch iPad before next year, and thus we are extremely skeptical of these claims. Consequently, we are posting this on our iOS Blog primarily for interest and discussion.