The Next iPad: Thinner, Lighter, Coming Soon?

By Steve Anderson December 26, 2012

While chances are that plenty of iPads of some generation are currently lurking under Christmas trees across the world, there's already some fresh word emerging about the next iPad's specs, as well as a possible release date.

With every new Apple product release comes a host of advance reports and potential features, and the latest iPad will be no different. The current reports, originally found in Japan's Macotakara before being picked up by 9to5Mac, suggest the next iPad will keep up a larger theme for Apple in that they will be thinner and lighter than the previous versions.

That's no mean feat by itself, considering the overall dimensions of the current lines of iPad and plans to reduce the next iPad by four millimeters in height, two millimeters in depth and a whopping 17 millimeters in width, but it only gets more interesting from there. The next iPad is expected to be unveiled in March 2013.

Additionally, it's expected that the next Apple tablet will borrow a few design cues from the iPad Mini, with the color schemes of white / silver and black / slate being used on the full-sized version.

A March unveiling is actually not out of line to suggest, being as the previous iPad launch – not the iPad Mini, but the full iPad – was in March of 2012. That would put Apple on track to release iPads in early spring and iPhones in fall, giving them a biannual launch strategy.

But Apple already somewhat divested from this concept with the launch of the iPad Mini back in October, as well as a revamped version of the regular iPad.

This has all the ring of truth to it, though early reports about Apple product releases have a way of turning out less than valid. Some have questioned Apple's overall launch schedule, wondering if maybe there are too many products coming out too close together. The launch of the revamped iPad, which hit just months after the launch of the iPad 3 – also just called the "new iPad" – likely did leave a bad taste in some users' mouths after seeing that their top-of-the-line device stopped being top of the line with surprising rapidity.

It wouldn't be out of line to think that Apple would lose a few customers with this rapid product launch approach, as a bad economy has many tightening belts and with less interest in buying a new Apple product every six months to a year.

Still, it will be interesting to see if Apple can keep this up, and for how long. Not to mention, of course, what new tricks they'll have to show off on the next iPad.

With the great gadget showcase known as CES waiting in the wings, however, it's going to mean the kickoff of some very big things to come. Apple likely won't want to be left behind in the face of growing competition, so some major Apple news is likely to be in the picture for the next few months as well.

Edited by Braden Becker

Contributing TechZone360 Writer

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