iPad 3 likely to have much-improved screen

With the iPad 2 orders only just landing on doorsteps, it seems ridiculous to talk about the iPad 3 being readied for an imminent launch. Yet previous rumours have pointed to the iPad 2 as being a modest upgrade, with a much more significant update coming later this year. Well, according to new reports, the iPad 3 has now been shifted to 2012.

That's according to Crave, which quotes a report from DigiTimes that talks about the screens for the next-generation tablet and those rumours of a swift update to the Apple tablet.

The DigiTimes report said: 'Sources from touch-panel makers pointed out that Apple recently released its latest tablet PC plan and is asking the panel makers to provide products that are capable [of supporting] higher image quality than the current iPad 2, and Apple may even choose [an] AMOLED panel or [a] panel that supports [the] Full HD standard to accomplish the plan. However, since the project is still at the initial planning stage, the actual products are unlikely to appear in 2011.'

So the claims of the next iPad having a much-improved screen appear to be true, with the next model likely to be full HD. But with so little groundwork done, it's more likely to be released early 2012, pretty much on the same schedule as this year's model. Good news if you've just shelled out on a new tablet.

However, there's a sting in the tail for Apple. Regarding those screen specifications, DigiTimes points out that the main supplier of AMOLED technology is Samsung, which is increasing its own tablet production this year, in an attempt to take on the iPad. Using an AMOLED screen on the iPad 3 could leave Apple at risk of component shortages – another reason why Apple might takes its time choosing a supplier, rather than rushing in.

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