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In spite of market rumours about the delay of iPad 2 commercial launch, Apple may release its new gadget shortly after the formal introduction on the 2nd of March, 2011, according to unofficial information. If the new rumours are correct, Apple's second-gen iPad will be released earlier than the majority of competing slates.

People familiar with the matter told AppleInsider web-site that Apple was preparing several of its operating segments to perform functions during the second half of [ninth] week that are representative of nothing short of a large scale, consumer-oriented product roll out, not just an announcement. Given the fact that Apple plans a media event on the 2nd of March and the rumour that it would formally introduce the new iPad there, it is highly likely that the company is preparing to start selling it.

Since iPad with Wi-Fi only connection does not require Apple to work with its partners among carriers to bring it to the market, it is not unlikely that the company may launch it shortly after the announcement. Tablets with 3G and Wi-Fi support require Apple to first work with carriers, who will then sell those products with data plans.

The second-generation iPad slate will address some of the issues of the original one. The device will be based on a more powerful presumably dual-core microprocessor, will feature higher-performance PowerVR graphics core and higher amount of memory, according to media reports. The device is projected to have a front-facing camera for video-conferences, but is also expected to have a similar 9.7" screen to the original model, which was not the best one possible even for 2010. Despite all of the improvements, the new device is claimed to be thinner and lighter than the predecessor.

Apple sold around 15 million iPad devices in 2010 thanks to the fact that it was the first to release a truly competitive media tablet. This year the situation gets tougher for Apple as numerous PC suppliers plan to release their slates for different customers, with different specifications and at different price-points. For example, Samsung Electronics, which Galaxy Tab slate emerged on sales in late October, had 7" screen, less polished operating system and did not have any price advantage over iPad,  managed  to sell two million units before the end of 2010.

Apple did not comment on the news-story.

Tags: Apple, iPad

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