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Rumor has LG, AU Optronics supplying 7-inch iPad LCDs

updated 10:26 am EDT, Thu May 17, 2012

2012 launch expected with 6 million units

Two companies, LG and AU Optronics, have been certified to supply LCD panels for Apple's rumored 7/7.85-inch iPad, says the Taiwanese publication Liberty Times. The firms are claimed to be aiming toward a product launch sometime in the second half of 2012, and an initial run of 6 million iPads. Liberty adds that TPK is expected to produce 4 million backlight modules, while Chimei Innolux will build 2 million; Nissha Printing will allegedly produce the touch film sensor.

On Tuesday DigiTimes suggested that Nitto would supply thin-film materials while Nissha and TPK would produce touchscreens. Thin-film touch could potentially make a 7-inch iPad both thinner and cheaper than is possible with the technology used on current iPads.

Despite Apple co-founder Steve Jobs' protests that a 7-inch tablet is too small, the company is now thought to be working on one in response to competition from 7-inch devices like the Kindle Fire and the Nook Tablet, both of which sell for $199 versus the 9.7-inch iPad's minimum $499. Still up in the air is what resolution a smaller iPad might use; while one report has had it using the same 2048x1536 as the third-gen iPad, others have called for 1024x768, as on the iPad 2. A smaller screen would, however, make 1024x768 appear somewhat sharper.

By Electronista Staff


  1. prl99

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: Mar 2009


    7 inch is too small

    I use my iPhone for what it is intended to be used for; phone calls, music, checking emails, figuring out where I am, and light web reading. That's enough for this small of a device. I bought my wife an iPad for a different reason, tutoring. It's larger size is good for kids and adults to read and interact with. A 7-inch iPad is too big to put in my pocket while too small to use for a lot of reading or teaching. Apple doesn't need a tweener just because some analyst or supplier says they do. Steve Jobs got rid of the multitude of Macs when he came back because there was no justification for that many models. It's the same now. Apple doesn't need to market a ton of products (like Best Buy does), they only need to sell a limited number of great products.

  1. ebeyer

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jun 2004


    Depends on your use case

    I have a crummy ol' Nook Color I rooted to run Android. The processor, memory and software are clearly inferior to my iPad's. But it is really handy to carry around - fits in my coat pocket, for example. So I find myself using it in places where the iPad is harder to carry around.

    If/when Apple sells a 7" iPad I will likely get one. Consumers will decide if this is a good or a bad move.

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