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The Apple iPad 2 was not a revolution compared to the original iPad despite of substantially better microprocessor. But the next-generation iPad 3 promises to be a breakthrough in many terms. Analysts expect the novelty to feature brand new screen with 2048*1536 resolution, new battery and maybe even a brand new chip. Unfortunately, the novelty may be thicker and cost more than the currently-available product.

In fact, the rumors about iPad 3 started circulating rapidly shortly after iPad 2 was launched. Industry analysts predicted that Apple will most likely make an exception and launch two new iPad models in 2011 to remain a step ahead of Android and dominate the tablet market. However, according to the Apple’s past product cycles and the information gathered from the component supply chains by market research firm TrendForce, the chance that Apple launches the next-generation iPad at the end of 2011 is remains slim.

iPad 3 May Carry Higher Price Tag

According to the surveys conducted by TrendForce’s research divisions, the upstream component suppliers have been stocking up their materials, a sign the new iPad is on the horizon and will most likely be launched in 2012. Interestingly, considering the current state of component supply, the new iPad is not designed to replace iPad 2 but to target at the consumers in the high-end market with specific needs.

As a result of such product positioning, consumers waiting to buy the next generation iPad may need to prepare more money, because the price may be higher than that of iPad/iPad 2 ($499 and above). According to the research conducted by SmartMobix, a research subsidiary of TrendForce, looking at the new iPad’s potential panel, backlight module and battery components, if mass production is unable to offset the cost increase, the retail price of new iPad is expected to rise by 10% compared to that of iPad/iPad 2.

2048*1536 Resolution for iPad 3 Possible

TrendForce is almost certain that the resolution will be doubled to 2048x1536 while remaining compatible with its software. The pixels per inch (ppi) will be 264 due to the screen size (9.7”) of the new iPad, falling short of Apple’s Retina Display standard of 300 ppi. With a resolution of 2048x1536, four pixels will be used to simulate one pixel of a lower resolution, which is the same method Apple employed when it upgraded iPhone 4’s resolution to Retina display standard. Apple iOS 5 is compatible with 2048x1536 resolution, which means that the app developers will have to write applications that support four different kinds of resolutions in the future in case they want to be compatible with all iOS-based products, including outdated iPhone gadgets.

The high-resolution IPS panel for the new iPad are projected to be supplied by Japanese manufacturer Sharp and South Korea makers LG and Samsung; panel production becomes more difficult with enhanced resolution. Looking at the yield rate, at present, Apple only places a small amount of orders to package manufacturers; the speed of the new iPad’s mass production may depend on the panel supply. As the resolution is enhanced, backlight brightness has to be raised as well in order to increase transparency. Consequently, Japanese makers including Toyoda Gosei will be supplying two LED lightbars instead of one, and 84 LEDs (0.8t) instead of 42 for this new product, TrendForce claims.

Increase of Power Consumption Leads to New Battery

The increased amount of LEDs results in higher electricity consumption: a lightbar plus 42 LEDs and a driver IC requires about 3W, which means that two lightbars require 5W – 6W. In addition, the resolution enhancement doubles the channels the driver IC controls. Although the current technology can fulfill the needs with one instead of multiple driver ICs, the electricity consumption will inevitably increase. Therefore, the battery capacity for the new iPad will increase by 50% (to over 10000mAh) compared to iPad 2 (6930mAh), and will continue to be supplied by Taiwanese battery makers Simplo and Dynapack.

Apple A5 or A6 May Power iPad 3

TrendForce predicts that the new iPad will adopt a A6 processor produced by TSMC. So far, the specifications of the A6 processor have not been disclosed, but what is out in the open is that it will be quad-cored and manufactured by TSMC in its 28nm process, and its GPU performance is expected to be upgraded. Unfortunately, A6 processor may not be launched in time for the new iPad's production. Hence, Apple may go with the A5 processor, which adopts ARM Cortex A9 core with the speed increased to 1.2-2GHz (compared to 1GHz of iPad 2) and upgrading the memory from 512MB to 1GB.

Regardless of what Apple ends up adopting, be it A6 or enhanced A5 processor, the battery size will have to be 1.5 times bigger in order to maintain the same battery life (10 hours) of iPad 2. For this reason, the new iPad will not be as small and slim as iPad 2, according to TrendForce.

iPad 3 May Not Replace iPad 2

According to the aforementioned analyses on specifications, size and weight, it seems implausible that the new iPad, which is larger and heavier than iPad 2, is aiming to replace iPad 2. Even with the cost reduction boosted by manufacturing technology advancement and mass purchasing, it will still be hard to cancel out the cost increase and set the price of new iPad at $499. In conclusion, it is quite possible that the new iPad is targeting at the high-end market and is expected to hit the market in Q1 2012, according to TrendForce.

Tags: Apple, iPad, Samsung, Sharp, LG Electronics


Comments currently: 28
Discussion started: 09/23/11 02:33:57 PM
Latest comment: 12/30/13 09:45:49 PM
Expand all threads | Collapse all threads


And still no USB or built in SD card reader. I'll stick with Android.
4 1 [Posted by: user99  | Date: 09/23/11 02:33:57 PM]

A tablet above $499? They can't be serious can they? A tablet is a 3rd or 4th device you have that you can use to read articles, browse the net or check email. It isn't a primary device. I guess Apple buyers love throwing $ into the wind (or they all make 6 figures in this economy).

Secondly, if the new iPad 3 is thicker & heavier than iPad 2, then what is the point? I want a light device that I can use in bed at night to read a book.

What the market needs are $99-199 tablets, not $550-600 iPad 3 with useless insanely high resolution. But I guess I don't understand marketing, which is why I am not employed in that field.

How in world are people willing to drop $500+ for a tablet? FFS, you can get a 4.3-4.5 inch smartphone that lets you quickly check the most important info on the go. Most people have instant access to a computer at work for at least 8 hours. And at home, those people at least have a desktop or a laptop, no?

Sometimes I feel like Apple users just want to own 4-5 products because owning Apple is "cool". I mean who still buys the iPod or iPod touch? Every smartphone can play music!!
2 0 [Posted by: BestJinjo  | Date: 09/23/11 05:43:55 PM]
- collapse thread

In Estonia they charge EUR599 for iPad2 16GB 3G. Someone just does not care.
1 0 [Posted by: Anton  | Date: 09/23/11 08:28:28 PM]
In the Middle East they pay for iPad2 3G 32GB more than 800 USD.
3 0 [Posted by: Pouria  | Date: 09/24/11 02:16:04 AM]
You would too if you had an oil well in your backyard.
1 0 [Posted by: BestJinjo  | Date: 09/26/11 10:16:12 AM]
Wow, that's very expensive. Last winter I had a chance to visit Brazil. Some people there bought an iPhone even though it was 1 month of their salary. Nuts.
2 0 [Posted by: BestJinjo  | Date: 09/24/11 07:54:21 PM]
show the post
0 3 [Posted by: Spencer  | Date: 09/24/11 06:09:06 AM]
It is a good thing that resolution keeps getting higher, of course there are tradeoffs too but you have perfectly valid preferences. However not having a computer or a phone is a problem in the modern world. The ipad is a good tablet, a bad computer, and a bad phone. You cannot run most applications on it or manage files properly, let alone use it ergonomically as a workstation, and if you like high res you will probably want to connect a high resolution IPS monitor properly configured and color managed too. And it is too big to be a phone.
3 1 [Posted by: CSMR  | Date: 09/24/11 11:50:02 AM]
Not having a phone could be a problem but you don't need a $700 iPhone to talk or even get email, a $200 phone does that just fine.

I refuse to carry a phone unless I'm on the clock, it stays at work. I don't have one for personal use.
0 1 [Posted by: user99  | Date: 09/26/11 08:58:18 AM]
200$? I have a 50$ phone made by Nokia wit color screen and camera that does the same thing. Also the battery last 10 more than any other Apple products out there. Of course, I only use the phone to talk, not to play or show off.
0 0 [Posted by: TAViX  | Date: 10/08/11 02:30:52 AM]

I think you and I have a totally different view of what direction a tablet should go. I want a tablet to be as thin and as light as possible like a piece of paper:

See this video @ 5:02-5:10 minute mark - Portable Display Glass

Now if that had wireless access, 30 day battery life and let me draw on it and be able to wirelessly transfer my drawings to a computer, THEN I would be impressed

There is just no way you can type documents fast enough on a tablet to be useful without an external keyboard. So if they created a slim keyboard with a projector that allows me to shoot video at 100+ inches onto any surface:

...then I could use the Portable Glass + "All-in-1 PC Keyboard" (with an HD projector and CPU/RAM/HDD inside). Then I would finally ditch a laptop and PC forever!!!
0 0 [Posted by: BestJinjo  | Date: 09/24/11 08:28:58 PM]
0 0 [Posted by: Spencer  | Date: 09/26/11 12:00:29 PM]
By the way, I'm not against any of those features, but I also want it to have superfine resolution. (We clearly agree that the iPad is currently heavier than we would like it to be.)
0 0 [Posted by: Spencer  | Date: 09/26/11 12:36:23 PM]
How are you posting on here without a computer or smartphone?
0 0 [Posted by: actionjksn  | Date: 10/25/11 05:41:17 PM]

All of this is flat out rumor. Until it is announced there is no reason to get your knickers tangled up over this. I do understand your frustration with Apples success in this area. I tried the iPad 2 out and returned it because I didn't really need the device. I certainly can imagine businesses especially sales people who could really use this. It is all about the presentation and pretty pictures in that market. Games are another area that this table could target. A portable that has this resolution would be another must have toy for the well heeled gamer market. There is also a real reason for game developers to love a device that requires more sophistication to hack. I don't claim to have a bunch of sources on this but my instincts tell me that this is a false rumor. Apple has not sold a single heavy device as a follow on that was high profile in several years (17inch macbook pro). The emphasis is always on small portable and long battery life. If this happens it may be a smaller device with higher resolution so the current battery would be enough to power it. Your guess is as good as mine. On a brighter note, if you prefer Android, you can bet your bottom dollar that if there is any weakness in this device some Android company will exploit it with a newer model. Everybody benefits from innovation. So, sit back and enjoy the ride over the next 5 years. Lots of cool stuff is coming down the pipeline.
2 0 [Posted by: ptmmac  | Date: 09/23/11 09:23:07 PM]

I really don't see the iPad 3 or whatever the next iPad is called having a 2048x1536 resolution for a number of reasons.

It's a lot of pixels of resolution to push for games and apps - 3.1 million pixels vs. 0.8 million pixels at the current 1024x768 resolution. For games, that means 4x the pixel load on the tablet's GPU.

It would be an unprecedented pixel density for a tablet, and higher resolution than any monitor under 27"!

The retina display on the iPhone is an incredibly high pixel density, but at least it's only a 960x640 resolution display - the hardware is capable of pushing that resolution.

I think a much more realistic target resolution on the next ipad would be something like 1600x1200, which is still very high resolution, and a massive increase in pixels compared to the current display -- 1.92 million pixels, over a 2x increase.
1 1 [Posted by: jiffylube1024  | Date: 09/24/11 05:01:06 PM]
- collapse thread

+1 . The resolution is total bullshit and hence this whole article is the same. There's no way they're going to pack 24" screen resolutions into something 1/3 the size.

I've seen 1920x1200 packed into a 17" laptop screen....everything was too damn small even for my young eyes.
2 1 [Posted by: AnonymousGuy  | Date: 09/24/11 05:40:27 PM]
My laptop from work had a 15" display with the same 1920x1200 pixels. And no problem to use. You are exaggerating to much
0 0 [Posted by: TAViX  | Date: 10/08/11 02:32:28 AM]
This only proves that the iPad 3 will have to use a new SoC. It should be A6 at 28nm process technology. In case Tegra 3 "Kal-El" is as good as Nvidia claims it to be, it may be an option as well.
2 0 [Posted by: Anton  | Date: 09/25/11 08:35:14 AM]

In Argentina (Buenos Aires) iPad 1 (16GB wifi 3g) costs no less than U$S 700. iPad 2 (16 GB wifi 3g) is at least U$S 900, and iPad 2 (64GB wifi 3g) is between U$S 1300-1400. Here you can check:
1 0 [Posted by: trelew2k  | Date: 09/25/11 10:16:07 PM]
- collapse thread

And what's the average monthly wage? $500 US?
0 0 [Posted by: BestJinjo  | Date: 09/26/11 10:19:19 AM]
It looks like argentina wages are about 25% of that in the US, at least for my job. I checked
0 0 [Posted by: user99  | Date: 09/26/11 11:03:02 AM]

This is all about conspicuous consumption. It let's people scream to the world, "Look how much I can afford to spend."
3 0 [Posted by: Hawkeye666  | Date: 09/26/11 02:25:38 AM]

10 hours is a crock. Just try playing infinity blade for 10 hours. It will be dead in two.
1 0 [Posted by: shadowmaster625  | Date: 09/26/11 10:43:23 AM]

I thought the rumor was that it would be 2048x1200, not 2048x1536!!!

Simply 1080p would be ideal. Anything more is probably unnecessary and a bit far-fetched (from a business model for profit and manufacturability).
1 0 [Posted by: Bo_Fox  | Date: 09/27/11 11:19:03 AM]

Stupid Apple rumormongers! Apple is NOT going to QUADRUPLE the iPad 3's display resolution compared to the iPad 2. Period. A display like this would be extremely expensive. Monitors at that resolution cost around $1000 and are 30". Packing that resolution into a smaller size would be even more expensive. Apple also likes big fat profit margins, so they would probably charge around $3000+ for a tablet like this. Fanboys are going to argue that the iPhone 4 screen is dense blah blah blah. True, but it is TINY in comparison to a tablet screen, so the manufacturing yields are much more forgiving (and the iPhone isn't much cheaper than an iPad before carrier subsidies). It's not going to happen any time soon, stop this ignorant rumor, it only makes you all look like morons.

In any case, this rumor was started by analysts. What do they know about technology? Nothing.
0 1 [Posted by: dew111  | Date: 09/30/11 03:09:47 PM]

For a more detailed iPad 3 analysis you guys can visit

0 0 [Posted by: suarezlea  | Date: 10/18/11 07:44:00 AM]

Good to hear that. My iPad battery can last so long when I bought it, but now it's easy to be low power after using 1 year. I bought a portable charger from Kinkoo: to keep my iPad alive, especially when I go outside. It works perfectly, with 8000 mAh capacity and fast charging speed, highly recommended.
0 0 [Posted by: kareom  | Date: 12/30/13 09:45:49 PM]


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