by Anton Shilov
11/23/2011 | 11:16 PM
Three contract manufacturers of displays have started to produce screens with 2048*1536 resolution (QXGA) for the next generation of Apple iPad 3 media tablets. Three companies are expected to deliver enough displays with extreme pixel density to enable Apple to launch the next iPad in volume sometimes in February or March.
"It is happening - QXGA, 2048*1536 - panel production has started [for the next-generation iPad]. There are three suppliers - [Samsung, Sharp, and LG Displays]," said Richard Shim, an analyst at NPD DisplaySearch, in an interview with Cnet News.
Although the launch of Apple iPad 3 is imminent and will not be a surprise, the only thing that is known about the iPad 3 for sure is that it will sport a new screen with 2048*1536 resolution. Other rumours point to quad-core A6 system-on-chip with a new graphics core, which is logical, considering the increase of the resolution. Some point to support for 4G/LTE connectivity, new types of batteries and so on. Some believe that the next iPad 3 will be thicker and heavier than existing one. Naturally, Apple does not comment on rumours.
A good news for the iPad 3 is that it will likely show up relatively shortly: March or even February. In fact, the first finished devices are projected to leave Foxconn's factories already in December.
"It takes a couple of weeks for the production to go to the ODMs (the manufacturers). Then the manufacturer puts them in the housing. Then, that goes off to shipment. We could start seeing finished devices produced in December. And then being ready to be shipped in January. With volumes gearing up in February and March," added Mr. Shim.
In case Apple manages to release a slate with beyond full-HD resolution, the market of media tablets will be redefined once again. Moreover, the device with better resolution and increased performance will get a chance to address new markets that benefit from high-quality screens.