Next Apple iPad to have 7-inch Retina Display, 128GB storage [Rumor]

AppleInsider are reporting that component suppliers in Taiwan have leaked details to one Wall Street analyst about an upcoming Apple iPad model.

The suppliers have indicated that that next-gen iPad could feature 7-inch Retina Display, camera, 128GB capacity, and a “micro or mini USB” port.

Would Apple have two ports on a mobile device? Doubtful. Would they get rid of the current connector design? Perhaps. Some reason that it is to comply with EU regulations on the charging of mobile devices.

It is unclear if this is yet another model in the iPad range, or to be the new iPad. It seems extremely unlikely that Apple would want to change the form factor of the existing iPad, which has been part of its success in my opinion. So, it seems that if this new iPad exists it might be a new model that fits into Apple’s range in-between the iPod Touch and the current iPad. Although, the Wall Street analyst quoted seems to imply that this smaller iPad will replace the current version.

Many of us see the smaller size of some of Apple’s competitor’s upcoming Tablet computers as a disadvantage, but perhaps Apple see a threat in that form factor in the market, and wants to plug it with a device we are already familiar with. One of theirs, that runs iOS!

128GB seems a bit of a leap in storage. But perhaps that is for a high end model.

It also seems unlikely that Apple would leave the existing iPad camera-less if they launched this mini-iPad. So, this information, if true, tends to lend weight to the argument that the next full size iPad will get a bump at around the same time. Assuming it still exists.

Some of the rumors coming out of the people quoted in this story are fairly wild. So I’d take them with a pinch of salt. 45 million iPads being sold in 2011, and AAPL hitting $430 in the next 12 months are certainly optimistic predictions.
Not impossible. But optimistic.

A new iPad to replace the old? Or is Apple expanding its product range? Have your say in the comments.