Following checks made at CES, Topeka Capital Markets analyst Brian White put out a new report claiming that Apple is planning to accelerate its upgrade cycle in 2013 and release new versions of the iPad and iPad Mini as early as March.
Our checks at CES indicate Apple will release the iPad 5 and the second-generation iPad mini this March. The iPad 5 is expected to be lighter and thinner than the iPad 4 that was released in October, while the form factor of the iPad mini should be similar to the first generation iPad mini that debuted in October.
That’s a rather accelerated turn around time and perhaps Apple is trying to keep pace, hardware wise, with the seemingly never-ending influx of new Android tablets into the marketplace. Perhaps, in an effort to prevent Android from gaining a foothold in the tablet space as it did with smartphones, Apple recognizes that it has to abandon its traditional 1-upgrade-per-year release cycle.
And while analyst reports should appropriately be taken with a grain of salt, it’s worth noting that the Japanese Mac Blog Macotakara – which has a rather strong record with respect to Apple rumors – also noted last month that Apple’s 5th gen iPad may hit store shelves as early as March.
Not mentioned in White’s report was whether or not Apple’s next-gen iPad Mini would get the Retina Display treatment.
via Mac Rumors