We've heard rumors that the next version of Apple's iPad will include a high-resolution display on par with the jump in detail seen with the iPhone 4's Retina display, and a new rumor suggests those iPad displays are already on their way to Asian iPad assembly plants.
It comes from Asian tech publication DigiTimes, which says that Apple supplies LG, Samsung and Sharp have already shipped some 1 million of the displays, according to PC World. There are also more displays on the way: DigiTimes claims another 2 million displays are set to be shipped out by the three suppliers by the end of November.
The displays are on their way to iPad assembly plants run by Foxconn, the report says, where the device colloquially known as the iPad 3 will be assembled sometime after Jan. 1. DigiTimes also reports that Apple's touch module manufacturers, Wintek and TPK Holding, plan to start shipping their components to Foxconn starting later this month.
As for the displays, however, not everything may be going as easily as Apple and its suppliers might hope. We heard back in August that issues with trying to create high resolution displays for the next iPad were holding back the device, and indeed caused Apple not to release it during the fall (if that ever really was the company's plan – there are quite a few reasonable doubts that suggest Apple is intending to wait until the spring and a year-long refresh cycle, as it does with other products).
DigiTimes is reporting that the iPad "retina" displays will be four times the current resolution found in the iPad and iPad 2: 2,048 x 1,536 pixels, as compared to 1,024 x 768 found in current devices. If DigiTimes latest rumor report is true, it suggests whatever problems were encountered in creating the high-res iPad displays have been solved, and the rumors fall nicely in line with the release of the next iPad, expected in March, like last year's device.
But takes all these rumors with a grain of salt. A lot of information reported by DigiTimes for these rumors comes from unnamed sources – as does this report – and many of those claim to have information because they work for Apple's suppliers. As such, the rumors seem to be wrong as often as they're right. We'll be keeping our ears to the ground in hopes of hearing more reliable info on Apple's next tablet release, but until that happens, we'll have to wait and see what Apple rolls out in the spring.