3G models of the iPad 2 are in short supply, reports 9to5Mac, which is a significant indicator that the iPad 3 is right around the corner. Of course, we really already knew that, so why is this significant?
The significance lies in the fact that only 3G models of the iPad 2 are constrained. This may mean that Apple is planning to keep the WiFi iPad 2 around after the iPad 3 is released, but may not plan to continue offering the 3G models. This would allow Apple to continue offering the WiFi-only iPad 2 for a cheaper price, while marketing the iPad 3 as a higher end premium model.
It’s also possible, as 9to5Mac points out, that Apple is preparing to offer a single 3G version of the iPad 2 rather than the separate CDMA and GSM models currently being offered. This would make matters easier for continued iPad 2 production. Apple made a similar move with the iPhone 4S (and the current iPhone 4), merging both technologies onto a single chip.
Of course, there’s also a chance that WiFi models could become constrained soon as well. Apple may follow the path they’ve established with the iPhone, and offer only a single model (16GB) of both the WiFi and the WiFi + 3G iPad.
While it’s unclear exactly what might be in store for the iPad 2, one thing is clear: The iPad 3 is coming, and it’s coming soon. Are you ready?