Apple's iPad 3 due in February?

One analyst says there are no significant technical hurdles in the way of the tablet's release.

By Kim Peterson Dec 9, 2011 11:48AM
Apple (AAPL) is preparing to launch its new iPad in February, according to a Citi analyst. And it's going to look great.

In a note to clients, Richard Gardner says several sources have told him of the February launch, reports Business Insider. The new iPad's screen is likely to be twice the resolution of the current iPad's.

Apple shares were essentially unchanged Friday at about $391 on the news. The iPad 3 is already baked into the stock's share price, and investors know better than to act on every Apple rumor.

Gardner writes that "there do not appear to be any significant technical hurdles remaining" in the way of the iPad 3 launch. Earlier reports questioned whether manufacturers could make the screen's high-quality Retina-like display in the volumes Apple wanted.

That issue appears to have been resolved, if Gardner's information is correct. Citi estimates Apple will sell 12 million to 13 million iPads in the December quarter.

Earlier reports targeted the iPad 3 for March or April. CNet does a good job of rounding up all the iPad 3 rumors here.

A February iPad is almost in line with Apple's history. The original iPad debuted in April of 2010, and the next version came out in March of 2011. Apple is undoubtedly feeling some pressure in the tablet sector from Amazon's (AMZN) Kindle Fire and other rivals.

Speaking of competitors, the Boy Genius Report site says Samsung is readying an 11.6-inch tablet for release early next year. The tablet, which will run on Google's (GOOG) Android platform, will reportedly have an impressive 2560-by-1600 screen resolution.

Even if the February iPad 3 launch estimate does not prove accurate, it's safe to say we'll have a number of new tablets out in the first half of next year.

Dec 9, 2011 8:10PM
Well, whatever.  I'm still going to wait to see if a Windows 8 tablet comes out.  Then I can decide between Win8, iPad or Android.  I'm not completely happy with the choices currently available.  Still waiting for my "perfect" tablet to come along. 
Dec 10, 2011 11:44PM
I'm waiting for a Windows 8 tablet also.  I'm not really an apple fan, and I'm absolutely not an Android fan.
Jan 1, 2012 5:44PM
What good is it anyway if it's not 4G!  The 3G version is far from adequate.  In addition, Apple has so many restrictions (doesn't allow Adobe Flash Player) and ridiculous charges for apps, it's disgraceful!  I simply don't see the attraction any longer for the I-Pad 2.  The use of Apple's word "free" in so many instances, is misleading and sad. I would never recommend anyone to buy an I-Pad of any kind.
Dec 9, 2011 1:42PM
Gift with a bow Really! I was going to buy a couple thousand for my Christmas presents. Guess I'll wait for the newer one.
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