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Apple Will Unveil iPad 3 in March, Say Sources

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Hey, iPad 2 owners. Feeling the 12-month itch? Finding that 1024x768 screen too pixelated? Wishing the processor had a 6 in it?

Well, start setting aside some cash, because according to reports, Apple (AAPL) will unveil the iPad 3 in just a few weeks.

Continuing to put the hurt on Android (GOOG) tablets and the nail in BlackBerry Playbook's (RIMM) coffin, Apple's iPad line is about to get its always anticipated update in the first week of March, so say inside sources who spoke with AllThingsD. The event will be of the typical sort -- likely the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco -- and is expected to follow the same release schedule for the iPad 2, more or less. That is, street date availability will be slated for a week or so after the event.

As far as specs go, the iPad 3 will probably run the A6 processor -- a natural upgrade from the A5 embedded in the iPad 2 and iPhone 4S -- and sport more powerful graphics. Word around the rumor mill is the iPad 3 will be the first Apple tablet to have a Retina Display, similar to the late-model iPhones, with a 2048x1536 resolution. No word yet on whether Apple will stick with the dual "3G+Wifi" and "Wifi Only" models, or if it will add Sprint (S) to the AT&T (T) and Verizon (VZ) subscription options. With any luck, this could be the first iPad that will take advantage of the carriers' 4G networks, putting it ahead of the iPhone 5's presumable upgrade.

Even with another exciting pad on the horizon -- Microsoft's (MSFT) Windows 8 tablet -- Apple's iPad line still carries the cachet to draw in the majority of tablet enthusiasts, making each debut one of the most watched of the year.

Still, with more competitors striving to dethrone the top dog, Apple will have to make every release count.

(See also: Apple iTV Already Exists, Say Sources and iPhone Can't Match Android's Versatility, Says Steve Wozniak)

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