The 2012 Consumer Electronics Show may have played host to an early iPad 3 sighting. iLounge editor Jeremy Horwitz claims he may have had a hands-on experience with Apple’s next-gen device, and is all-too-willing to spill the details.
Yesterday, one day ahead of the 2012 CES, I saw what’s supposedly the next-generation iPad. I’d show you a picture, but there’s honestly nothing to be seen. Think iPhone 4 to iPhone 4S: this device so resembles the iPad 2 that differences are only obvious when they’re placed next to each other. From the back, you could walk past this new iPad on display and have no idea that anything had changed.
Horwitz continues to describe the device, as shown through seedy third-party iPad 3 accessories, painting an image of what various accessory manufacturers and other companies expect the iPad 3 to be like.
The new iPad’s body is so slightly thicker than the iPad 2 that the change is unnoticeable on first inspection; a roughly 1mm increase will barely be perceptible to users. […] On the rear, the camera in the upper left corner has become bigger, noticeably so when placed alongside the iPad 2, but not so huge that anyone would think they were different at a distance.
Unfortunately, Horwitz didn’t see the screen of the device, which, considering that many are expecting Apple to include a Retina display in the iPad 3, would likely have been quite the highlight.
Horwitz continues to suggest that most existing iPad 2 accessories should work with the iPad 3, due to its very minute physical differences – even the buttons, speakers and switches are in the exact same places.
Finally, Horwitz finishes the article by suggesting that the device he say may have been a pre-production prototype, as it “seemed to be more than half a year old.” Horwitz then disclaims every statement he made by stating:
All I can tell you is that every company I’ve asked about the next iPad seems to think what I’ve told you above is correct, apart from the possible screen size tweak, which remains uncertain.”and also by more or less disclaiming his entire with a tone that very much suggests that he believes what he saw was authentic, although he thinks it may not have actually been an ‘iPad 3’
It’s worth noting that iLounge also showed of near-final pictures of the iPad 2 at CES last year, which looked incredibly similar to the version that was released, right down to the curves and proportions.
So, did Horwitz really see the iPad 3? It’s certainly possible, especially given his track record. The truth, unfortunately, won’t become clear until the device is released, which is likely to happen sometime in March.