rumors emerged of more “iPad 3”

Tuesday, February 21st 2012. | Gadget News

ipadOne of the main complaints about the iPad 2 has been its camera, one of the only components of the iPad that falls behind its competitors. Now, photos leaked from a Chinese blog called Apple Daily indicate that this could change with the next iPad.

Photos on the Chinese-language Web site show the new iPad with the same 8MP camera sensor as the one currently in the iPhone 4S, indicating there will be a big boost in camera quality when the tablet is unveiled. Ars Technica also notes that the pictures show a camera opening that looks similar to the one on the latest iPhone. A high-quality sensor would likely add to the price of the iPad.

According to MacRumors, Apple Daily is a tabloid-style newspaper that was on the right track about new MacBook models coming in 2010, though its report was not completely correct about the specs and timing of that launch. The images are also similar to other “leaks” that have come out of China in the past few weeks.

The ‘iPad 3’ may also have a thicker casing. The Verge reports:

We’ve seen some images of the interior of Apple’s iPad 3casing design, and now what appear to be photos of the exterior are making the rounds, courtesy of M.I.C. Gadget. The design doesn’t stray too far from iPad 2 territory, but it is noticeably thicker (presumably to accommodate LTE), with a more tapered shape. Although the angle presented in these images makes the difference in thickness seem quite stark, most rumors we’ve seen suggest the change will only be a matter of a millimeter or two.

Additionally, MacRumors found a posting at WeiPhone purporting to show the logic board for the iPad 3. The most interesting part is the large “A5X” label on the main chip. While some were expecting the new SoC to be named the A6, A5X would fit in with Apple’s pattern of incrementally improving a product before advancing the model number: Leopard to Snow Leopard, iPhone 3G to 3GS and 4 to 4S, and now Lion to Mountain Lion, for example. The A5X number, as well as the incremental step in actual part numbers, has led many to speculate that there could be a dual-core chip inside instead of a quad-core chip. That would match up with intel we heard some time ago, however it’s also entirely possible that this is a prototype board and that the widely-rumored quad-core A6 chip is still in the works. Luckily, with a rumored release date of March 7th, we shouldn’t have much longer to wait until it all comes clear.

As for the iPhone 5, it seems that Apple may be settling on fall as its new season for iPhone releases, according to the Japanese tech blog Macotakara. The site, which has been accurate in the past about Apple rumors, also cites “reliable sources” for its information. I wouldn’t be too surprised if the iPhone 5 does land during the fall, because it wouldn’t make much sense for Apple to cut into the iPhone 4S’ life cycle. People are still hot for the iPhone 4S, and Apple will want to milk that demand for all it’s worth.

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