More rumors about a larger iPhone and a 12.9-inch iPad have emerged from Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) Asian supply chain. The latest rumors come from “upstream supply chain” sources cited by Taiwan’s hit-or-miss DigiTimes website.
According to DigiTimes sources, Apple is planning on releasing a 12.9-inch tablet in October that will be geared toward the North American educational market. Although sources said the new iPad will likely have a 12.9-inch screen, they noted that a tablet with a 13.3-inch screen was also a slim possibility.
DigiTimes also suggested that Apple’s creation of a large-screen iPad may have been prompted by rival Samsung’s (SSNLF.PK) plans to release a 12- to 13-inch tablet. DigiTimes’ sources said Apple’s oversize iPad will be manufactured by the Taiwan-based Quanta Computer.
The unnamed supply chain sources also predicted that Apple will release a large-screen iPhone in May. Although the sources did not specify a screen size for the larger iPhone, the device will supposedly include a 20-nanometer processor manufactured by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (NYSE:TSM)
Apple’s A7 chip is currently manufactured by Samsung using a 28-nanometer process. DigiTimes reports the larger iPad may incorporate the new processor and that this could lead to the tablet “being considered as a substitute of the 11-inch MacBook Air.”
Although DigiTimes has a mixed track record when it comes to Apple product predictions, it should be noted that its supply chain rumors appear to be in line with several reports from other media outlets. The Wall Street Journal reported similar rumors in July about a “new tablet measuring slightly less than 13 inches.” Additionally, the Korea Times reported last month that Apple was developing an iPad with a 12.9-inch screen.
Rumors of a large-screen iPhone have also been widely reported. The Wall Street Journal said in September that Apple was testing iPhones with screen sizes that ranged from 4.8 inches to 6 inches. Last month, Bloomberg cited an insider source that reported Apple would release two large-screen iPhones in the third quarter of 2014. One device will feature a 4.7-inch screen and the other will have a phablet-size 5.5-inch screen.
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