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Tuesday, May 31, 2011, 09:00 pm PT (12:00 am ET)

Rumor: Apple certifying components for third-gen iPad

Just months after launching the iPad 2 to sell-out crowds, Apple has reportedly begun certifying components for the next-generation iPad, according to sources out of the Far East.

Industry publication DigiTimes cited sources at Taiwanese component makers, noting that some makers have already received certifications for parts, while others are currently in the process of certification. LED backlight units from Radiant Opto-Electronics were specifically mentioned as having landed certification.

"Taiwan-based component makers for backlight modules and light bars have received certification from Apple, however, the certification of panels is still in progress, added industry sources," the report read.

Sources also downplayed recent rumors that Apple was in talks with Samsung to switch to an AMOLED display for the next iPad. The report claimed Apple "will still adopt 9.7-inch LCD panels," with Taiwan-based Chimei Innolux close to receiving certification of its panels. Component makers expect the iPad 3 to arrive in 2012.

It should be noted, however, that DigiTimes has an uneven track record with Apple predictions via Asian suppliers.

Early reports on the iPad 3 initially suggested that Apple could release the next-generation iPad at the end of 2011. However, Apple appeared to quash those rumors in March when it dubbed 2011 "the year of iPad 2."

According to one analyst, Apple will introduce a Retina Display-like panel on the iPad 3 with a doubled resolution of 2048x1536. Apple had reportedly hoped to include the higher-resolution display in the iPad 2, but ran into last-minute "engineering issues."

Last week, Samsung filed a court motion to obtain advance copies of the next-generation iPad by June 13, 2011, though the company admitted that it had no knowledge that Apple was developing the device, instead relying on "internet reports" and "Apple's past practice." The motion came in response to a similar motion by Apple. The iPhone maker is suing Samsung for "crossing the line" and copying Apple's look and feel of its smartphones and tablets.