Rumor: Apple iPad 3 prototypes with retina display being readied

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Just about as soon as Apple’s iPad 2 was unveiled in March, iPad 3 rumors started churning.

And the biggest bit of speculation undoubtedly has been over when the iPad would be fitted with what Apple calls a retina display.


Apple’s iPad 2 has the same 9.7-inch screen with a 1024 x 768 resolution as the first-generation iPad. Apple’s iPhone 4 has a retina display with a resolution of 960 x 640 resolution, which features 326 dpi (dots per inch, or the number of pixels in each inch that make up an image on screen).

Any dpi of 300 or greater is said be so dense that pixels are indistinguishable from each other to the human eye at a distance of about 10 to 12 inches.

The general rumor mill thinking goes: if the iPhone 4 has such a dense, sharp screen, the iPad eventually will get an amped-up display too. Apple, for its part, has never made such a promise, but Samsung has experimented with retina-like displays on tablet computers.

On Friday, the Wall Street Journal reported that unnamed sources at manufacturers and suppliers in Taiwan have told it that Apple is currently working on the eventual iPad 3, which is pegged for an early 2012 release. Not much of a surprise there.

The Journal however also reported that the iPad 3 prototypes will feature a retina display with a resolution of 2048 x 1536.

Apple fanboys and girls rejoice -- yet another report to point toward a higher-resolution iPad, an upgrade that would make a lot of sense for the current tablet leader.


The Journal report does contradict previous speculation that a retina-display-equipped iPad would hit retailers this year as an iPad HD or an iPad 3 to land just in time for the holiday shopping season.


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-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles