Despite learning over the last few weeks that Apple would be delaying the release of the iPad 3 until early next year, it looks as if Jobs and Co. are in the process of securing a decent supply chain for the display, with 3 shortlisted candidates.
It was one of the great disappointments when the iPad 2 was launched bereft of a Retina Display. Apple had earlier released the iPhone 4 with a beautifully crisp 960×640 screen which each and every user had become accustomed to. It seemed a formality that a similar pattern would transgress over to the second installment of the iPad, but it wasn’t to be. Although the iPad 2 was thinner and faster than its predecessor, there was always a lingering feeling of "is this it?!"
Nonetheless, it seems Apple is now heading towards a more significant visual upgrade at the third time of asking. With iOS 5 promising that Newsstand app – bringing all of the newspapers together in one teensy little SpringBoard icon, a Retina Display would most certainly find another welcome home and also help eradicate the problem of newspapers being scattered all over train carriages.
It appears that Apple will look to the two biggest LCD suppliers on the planet – Samsung and LG, along with Sharp to develop the screens for its next tablet release. LG will be the most favored manufacturer, followed by Samsung, with Sharp providing the least, although there is potential for Sharp to play a more significant role ahead of Samsung if it can provide a high quality, stable supply. It is thought that Apple has placed Sharp into the mix to potentially distance itself from friend/foe Samsung, which has emerged as more of an enemy than an ally in recent months.
Along with the preoccupation of the imminent iPhone 5 and iOS 5 launch, production of the Retina Display is cited as the main reason behind Apple delaying the release of the iPad 3, which was initially rumored to be making an appearance around the same time as the upcoming smartphone and operating system. Although it would have been wonderful to see the next-gen iPad, iPhone and iOS released in a convoy, it is much more important that Apple doesn’t cut any corners and has a healthy supply of each product. Furthermore, it gives those who want both enough time to save!
The iPad 3, which is expected to boast a 9.7-inch display, with a resolution of 2,048 x 1,536 pixels , is reported to be dropping in early 2012 – maybe at the end of Q1 – giving the iPad 2 a full year on the market.