'iPad 2 Plus' Rumors Gather Steam

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An upgraded iPad 2 with a higher-resolution display is looking more likely as rumors keep piling up.

'iPad 2 Plus' Rumors Gather Steam
The latest report comes from FBR Capital Markets analyst Craig Berger, who said Apple is requesting quotes from component suppliers for an "iPad 2 Plus." This "marginally different device" may have double the pixel density of the existing iPad, and would launch in late 2011, Berger wrote to his clients.

Analysts aren't the most reliable source for Apple rumors, but Berger, who cites indications in the supply chain, isn't the first person to float the possibility of a new iPad for the holidays.

In June, Taiwan's Economic Daily said Apple would launch a higher-resolution iPad in the fourth quarter, referring to it as the "iPad 3," and research outlet CLSA said the same thing. Last week, DigiTimes mentioned that upstream suppliers were preparing materials for the iPad 3 and iPhone 5. Shortly before the iPad 2 launched, Cult of Mac cited an Apple staffer who said that a higher-resolution iPad 3 would launch later in the year.

Then again, DigiTimes has previously reported that Apple will not release the iPad 3 this year. And my colleague Jeff Bertolucci is skeptical of the rumors, noting that Apple is on top of the tablet game and doesn't need to revamp the iPad 2 so soon after launch.

Of course, no one knows what Apple will do until Steve Jobs or another executive announces something. But if these rumors keep gathering, they'll become harder for prospective iPad 2 buyers to ignore.

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At a Glance
  • The iPad 2 remains a solid choice, thanks to its lower price and strong app choices.


    • Slimmer design with curved edges is easier to hold
    • Comparatively light at 1.3 pounds


    • Tediously slow to charge
    • Relies on PC link to iTunes for updates, backups
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