Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is reportedly planning to launch a bigger iPad with a higher resolution screen next year. Sources familiar with the matter told Chinese website Pad News that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and its Chinese partner Foxconn Technology Co., Ltd. (TPE:2354) (OTCMKTS:FXCOF) are testing five different prototypes of 12.9-inch iPad. The alleged larger size iPads will feature 2K and 4K resolutions.
New iPads to sport double the resolution of iPad Air
Sources said Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) may launch the larger screen iPad Pro (as they called it) by April 2014. And one with 4K resolution may hit the market in October when the Cupertino-based company updates its product cycle. The current iPad Air with 9.7-inch screen has 2,048-by-1,536 pixel resolution. That already falls in the 2K category. Sources said that the 4K version may have a resolution of 4096 x 3072, double the resolution of iPad Air. The upcoming device is also rumored to sport 397ppi pixel density, compared to the iPad Air’s 264ppi.
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It’s not the first time the reports of a larger iPad have surfaced. Last month, The Korean Times said that a “first tier” Korean display maker is already manufacturing the 12.9 inch Retina display for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). Prior to that, there were reports that Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) was testing a 12.9-inch or 11.4-inch tablet. The Wall Street Journal also claimed that a large-size iPad could hit the market next year.
Apple aims to maintain its edge
Tablets are rapidly replacing PCs in global markets. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) may be planning to maintain its edge with a larger screen size. PC sales were down 5% during the June quarter, and sank another 6% in September quarter. The size of the upcoming iPad Pro would be close to the 13-inch MacBook Pro.
It’s noteworthy that Panasonic Corp. (OTCMKTS:PCRFY) (TYO:6752) already has a tablet in 4K resolution range. The 20-inch Windows 8 tablet by the Japanese company sports a 3840 x 2560 resolution. However, it’s priced at around $6,000.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares were down 0.45% to $563.79 at 10:24 AM EST.