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iPad 5 Adopts Key Technology from Apple's Backyard

iPad 5 Adopts Key Technology from Apple's Backyard

Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL) fifth-generation iPad is expected to go into production this summer.

When it does, suppliers believe that Apple will replace its old technology with thin-film touch panels -- the same type of panels that are currently used in the iPad Mini. This will allow the company to build a thinner, lighter and more attractive full-size tablet.

According to DigiTimes, thin-film touch panel providers "expect to see increased orders from Apple in 3Q13" as the firm prepares for the next iPad.

This implies that the fifth-generation model will ship a little later than expected. Many analysts speculate that Apple will ship the device sometime in June or July. If Apple does not receive the thin-film panels before that, it is highly unlikely that the new iPad will ship during the third quarter.

Thus far, Apple has not released any of the iPad models during the summer. Instead, Apple has reserved its tablet releases for the first, second and fourth quarters.

By waiting until October to release the fifth-generation iPad, Apple will have given consumers a full year to buy up the last model. Comparatively, the fourth-generation iPad shipped seven months after the third model arrived at retail.

While Apple does not seem to be hurt by the mistake, 45 percent of domestic iPad owners were angered by the timing of the iPad 4's release.

However, if Apple decides to wait until fall, it could mean that the drought of new products will extend well beyond the winter months.

Thus far, Apple has not announced a single new product that is due for release this spring. The Mac maker quietly released another iPad tweak, which increased the memory to 128GB and upped the price to $799. The smaller and cheaper models are still available.

Louis Bedigian is the Senior Tech Analyst and Features Writer of Benzinga. You can reach him at 248-636-1322 or Follow him @LouisBedigianBZ


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