updated 01:29 pm EDT, Thu August 16, 2012
Tech helps reduce radio interference
Apple's rumored mini iPad is expected to use flexible substrates coated with iridium tin oxide (ITO), supplied by a Taiwanese firm, Efun Technology, DigiTimes claims. The site's sources say that the technology has already been used by a number of Samsung devices, thanks to its thin and light nature. The people suggest that Efun profits should increase throughout the second half of 2012 due to ITO's growing popularity.
The substrates form a part of displays, where the ITO coating helps to reduce radio frequency interference and shield against electromagnetic signals in general. While DigiTimes doesn't suggest that Apple has had a problem with interference, the company may simply want to improve the overall reliability of its electronics.
Reports have pegged an announcement of a smaller iPad -- if it happens -- for September 12th, the same day as the next iPhone is expected to debut. So far sources have suggested it will use a 7.85-inch display, Apple's new, smaller dock connector format, and thin side bezels. While Apple once claimed no interest in smaller iPads, that was prior to the arrival of tablets like the Amazon Kindle Fire and Google Nexus 7, which have drawn attention for their portability and far cheaper $199 pricetags. The least expensive iPad is the iPad 2, which is still $399.