Apple supplier Quanta Computer Inc. is reportedly working on a 12.9-inch iPad for 2014, according to the DigiTimes. The publication also noted Quanta is competing with Foxconn Electronics over Apple iWatch orders. The larger iPad will allegedly go into mass production in the second half of 2014, while the iWatch is purportedly already in "pilot production."
"Quanta is expected to encounter several challenges in terms of industrial design and assembly when making the large-size iPad. And since the size is not the mainstream specification, order volumes are expected to be limited, the sources said."
"As for the iWatch, component makers have already started the pilot production, but because of low yields, mass production is rumored to have been postponed from the first quarter of 2014 to the second."
An official at a local Apple supplier in Korea told The Korea Times that a "first-tier display supplier is now producing a 12.9-inch Retina display" for a new iPad. The larger iPad is slated for a 2014 release and it will boast an "almost ultra high-definition (UHD) quality" screen with more pixels than the current iPad Air model.
“The 12.9-inch iPad will have improved picture quality. As the Apple partner intends to boost its lineup for displays that have almost ultra high-definition (UHD) quality, the upcoming iPad will provide very clear quality similar to that of UHD."
One of the more interesting rumors circling around Apple's plans for the next generation of iPads has surfaced. According to a report cited by Unwired View, the iPad will soon come in three different sizes thanks to the addition of an iPad maxi with 12.9-inch display. The name is said to be tentative, but then the entire notion that Apple will build larger iPads is unconfirmed at the moment.
That being said, the addition of a 12.9-inch iPad would fit nicely with the existing 9.7-inch iPad and 7.9-inch iPad mini currently on the market. The larger form factor would be aimed at the digital textbook market as well as those needing creative and productivity software packages on their tablets. iPad maxi would also compete with smaller notebooks, providing better portability and battery life.