The original iPad shipped in April 2010, the iPad 2 shipped in March of 2011, and apparently the iPad 3, also known as the iPad HD, could ship in September of 2011. That could mean that for the first time since Apple has released an iOS device they could be preparing to release an updated version twice in one year.
The reporters over at Digitimes have been hearing that Apple could be looking to add a second manufacturer to their production lineup to help meet the demand of the iPad HD. It’s being reported that in addition to Foxconn, Apple could be looking to add either Pegatron or Quanta to the production lineup. Quanta has previously worked on the Verizon iPhone
The rumor mill is reporting that an iPad HD could have a Retina display (2048 x 1536), but not many other details have surfaced at this point. ThisIsMyNext was one of the first to suggest that two iPads could ship this year, and the term iPad HD was coined by the popular tech blog. They believe that the device will be aimed at music and video professionals, and that it will be complimentary to the lineup, and exist in tandem with the iPad 2.
Currently the iPad 2 is still seeing some supply issues, with reports of users seeing delays in shipping of up to two to three weeks, so this move could have simply been made to help get the supply issues under control.
The Year of the iPad 2
The iPad 2 kicked off with a neat little marketing slogan that went, “The Year of the iPad 2.” We added the italics for extra emphasis, and we think it’s important to point out that Apple has repeatedly told us that it’s an entire year worth of iPad 2. Arguments could be made to support the idea that the iPad 2+ would still be an iPad 2, but we’re a little skeptical at this point.
The Gruber factor
Ever since John Gruber announced that Apple could release two iPhones in one year, based on a hunch we might add, the rumor mongers have been hell bent on digging up evidence supporting two iPhones in one year, and now it’s two iPads. If you recall, leading up to the expected WWDC iPhone announcement, rumors ran rampant of two iPhones being shipped this calendar year. We’ve yet to see even one at this point.
Bigger, faster, stronger device rumours are always hot topics for debate, but at this point we have a very hard time seeing a second iPad released this year, unless it’s drastically different from the current edition.