Further details emerging about iPad 2

Dec 10, 2010
Tech

We keep hearing new things about the iPad 2 from various “sources” in the electronics components manufacturing industry — today, it’s that the iPad 2 will include two cameras. This isn’t exactly mind-blowing, seeing as people have been talking about the iPad including a second camera (it already has one that faces the user for […]

We keep hearing new things about the iPad 2 from various “sources” in the electronics components manufacturing industry — today, it’s that the iPad 2 will include two cameras.

This isn’t exactly mind-blowing, seeing as people have been talking about the iPad including a second camera (it already has one that faces the user for video conferencing) on the back, like an iPhone 4, since the tablet’s release last year. Most of the new tabs on the market, like the Samsung (005930.KS) Galaxy S, include a second camera, so if Apple (AAPL) didn’t install one, that would probably be more noteworthy.

Still, sources say the camera is a go, so we can all stop worry about whether we can hold up a nine-inch tablet to take a photo of something. Reuters reported today that two camera makers, Genius Electronic Optical Co. Ltd. and Largan Precision Co. Ltd., have a deal to make camera components for Apple, but the two companies wouldn’t say exactly what device they’re working on.

That one’s a no-brainer, but we’re also hearing that Apple is switching from the iPad’s AMOLED display for something else.

Digitimes is reporting that Coretronics, another Taiwan-based components supplier, is working on backlight units to supply to Apple’s iPad display manufacturers, Chimei Innolux and LG Display.

Backlight units, or BLUs, are used to light LCD displays, but AMOLED doesn’t require backlighting. The suggestion there is that if Apple is building BLUs, it’ll switch from AMOLED to a screen that needs them.

The same thing happened with the iPhone 4: Apple bounced AMOLED for an LCD screen there, and it turned out to be the super-high definition Retina Display. So if iPad 2 is going to be LCD, it’s a fair bet to say we’ll see some version of Retina there, as well. Again, it would actually be surprising if Apple chose not to go the Retina route with the iPad 2.

So there’s your daily iPad 2 rumor maintenance. Here’s a rundown of what we “know” about the iPad 2 so far:

  1. Likely to be carrier-neutral and work all over the globe on various networks.
  2. Might be built with some kind of Macbook Air-like unibody construction method.
  3. Lighter than the iPad.
  4. Expected to carry two cameras, front-facing and rear-facing, like an iPhone 4.
  5. Probably will have some kind of high-definition Retina-like display, no longer AMOLED.
  6. Manufacturing starting early 2011, around mid- to late-February.
  7. Expected to launch in April.
  8. Apple expected to start working to decrease iPad inventory in coming months.

There you go — everything we’ve heard about the iPad 2 from unidentified, overseas sources claiming to have spoken with people who are working on making the tablet. Hopefully there will be something actually concrete to report soon.

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Phil Hornshaw

Phil Hornshaw is a freelance writer, editor and author living in Los Angeles, dividing his time between playing video games, playing video games on his cell phone, and writing about playing video games. He’s also the co-author of So You Created a Wormhole: The Time Traveler’s Guide to Time Travel, which attempts to mix time travel pop culture with some semblance of science, as well as tips on the appropriate means of riding dinosaurs. Check out his profile.

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