Apple is reportedly set to launch an upgraded 9.7-inch iPad in the summer of this year with the device shipment volumes expected to increase starting September, according to a Chinese-language Apple Daily report citing sources from market watchers.
Despite the highly doubtful nature of the paper's claims based on the fact that the current iPad is only a few months old, the report can still be expected to ripple through the component supply chain and stir up the many tablet PC OEMs and vendors trying to emulate Apple's success with me-too products of their own design.
The upgraded iPad is said to feature indium gallium zinc oxide (IGZO) panel technology to allow the device to feature an even thinner design and longer battery life. Panel supply will be shifted from Samsung to Sharp, the paper noted.
Currently, 60-70% of current iPad panels are supplied by Samsung, with the rest shared by LG Display and Sharp. But as Foxconn Electronics (Hon Hai Precision Industry) has recently made investments in Sharp, Sharp is expected to see its proportion rise to 50% for the upgraded iPad, added the paper citing its sources.