Apple Preparing “World” iPad?
Since we know for sure there’ll be an iPad 2 and we also know that a release is going to happen in several months, that leaves us with plenty of time to speculate on what it might offer when it eventually hits the shelves. If you haven’t heard about at least a couple of rumors regarding the iPad 2, then you’re probably not that fond of gadgets. On previous occasions we’ve explored the option that Apple is working on a 7 inch iPad that will offer a camera on the front and one on the back. Sadly, Steve Jobs came right out and explained that he believes a 7 inch size to be far from optimal.
Nowadays, we’re fonder of talking about an iPad that could deliver 3G support for carriers around the world, be they GSM or CDMA. Several analysts are expecting Apple to come up with such a device. One of them, Brian Blair from Wedge Partners, is the same guy who stated the next iPad will have a front-facing camera and will be slimmer than the original version.
This is what Blair mentioned regarding Apple’s future plans and tablet device: “Recent checks…suggest Apple is going to be ratcheting down production of the existing 3G iPad over the next two months in anticipation of ramping up a new World iPad that is powered by Qualcomm and will run on both GSM and CDMA based networks around the world.” He adds that other recent checks suggest Apple has plans to build about 48 million iPads in 2011. That’s a pretty high number and the Cupertino-based company is estimating some pretty high sales during the following year.
Blair also managed to gain some info on what the future iPad will be like. He claims that the new generation tablet will feature at least a front-facing camera (hey, at least FaceTime should be offered to iPad owners, don’t you think?) and that it’ll be thinner than the existing model. Furthermore, iPad 2 will be made out of one piece of metal with no pins needed and as a result, it will need a new type of manufacturing process. This reminds us of Apple’s choice in laptop building, respectively the unibody design used in Macbooks.
Ok, so far so good. We’re not really surprised by anything. After all, it would be a great mistake if Apple didn’t at least add a camera to the new iPad. A new design is also in store and one way to make a device more attractive (especially when it comes to Apple) is to make it slimmer and lighter. As for the world 3G part, we’ll have to wait to find out if that’s true. The “multimode” chip believed to be inside the tablet would allow Apple to build just a single product for all carriers worldwide. This would definitely mean a lot for Verizon who is currently selling the WiFi only version of the tablet paired with MiFi hotspot devices.
Furthermore, the same approach could be taken for the iPhone, currently available in the US only through AT&T. Rumors regarding a Verizon iPhone have been spreading around for ages. According to the latest information, the handset should start shipping through Verizon Wireless next year.11