iPad 3 to Include IGZO Panels Produced by Sharp

The iPad 3 is set to launch sometime in 2012 and the device will adopt a different type of flat panel called IGZO, according to Digitimes.

IGZO (indium gallium zinc oxide) panels differ from what is already being used in the previous iPad models. The older models include IPS (in-plane switching) panels, which allow the device's display to deliver content at the full HD level, according to the publication’s sources.

Sharp has shifted gears within its ranks in order to produce more small-size panels for smartphones and tablet PCs in order to secure a place in those markets. The company also is still planning to launch its Galapagos tablet lineup in 2012 that will also utilize IGZO panels.

According to Digitimes, most Taiwan-based flat panel makers are capable of producing IGZO panels, but might be incapable of making them at a consistent rate.

Two separate versions of the iPad 3 are expected to launch at the MacWorld/iWorld event in 2012. The iPad 3 will set the new standard for high-end tablets and relegate the iPad 2 to compete with lower end models such as the Amazon Kindle Fire, a device that sold extremely well throughout the 2011 holiday season.

One of the main differences between the two new iPad 3 models will be the lens’ included in each – one at 8-megapixels and the other at 5-megapixels, according to DigiTimes. The larger of the two will feature a 9.7-inch screen with a QXVA resolution that gives it (1,536x2,048) pixels.

It is also expected to feature dual-LED light bars that are specifically designed for the new iPad to strengthen the brightness of the panels. Sharp will be a major panel supplier for Apple’s tablet and Samsung and LG are expected to pitch in as well. Samsung will specialize in manufacturing quad-core A6 processors for the iPad 3.

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