For some time now, we’ve been hearing that a bigger, 12.9-inch iPad is due to launch from Apple, and will further bridge the gap between the 9.7-inch iPad Air 2 and Cupertino’s recently expanded line of MacBooks. Now, an LG Display official has reportedly confirmed that it’s ramping up display production ahead of the launch of such an iPad.
The information comes from the Taiwan-based EDNews, which cites “a well-informed LG Display related official” in its article. Here, the publication notes that production of Oxide LCD displays, known also as IGZO, is being increased at LG Display factories for a very special reason. After confirming that an increase in IGZO sheets is indeed on the cards, the official is quoted as adding:
Investment to produce 30,000 sheets next years second quarter have started. Apple is creating iPads with 12.9 inch display, which shows they are increasing the panel size. And because so, we are planning in expanding production rate as well.
IGZO is indeed an attractive option for Apple, since it compares more favorably than the LCD IPS screens used on the current-generation iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3. Though it actually requires less power than LCD IPS, IGZO is also capable of producing a brighter, more vibrant range of colors, and response times for changes in the display are quicker, too.
The benefits of the IGZO display aside, however, the information from the “LG Display related official” is significant in a more general sense. If true, it indeed means that Cupertino is pushing ahead with the development of a bigger, 12.9-inch “iPad Pro,” the like of which has been rumored for a long time. Earlier this year, for instance, a leaked sketch of the device hit the Web, and in November a further report noted that a larger tablet (dubbed the “iPad Air Plus”) was indeed in Apple’s product pipeline.
Personally, I don’t see the attraction in owning an iPad bigger than the current 9.7-inch “Air” model, but if there’s a market for such a larger tablet then you can bet Apple, at some point, is going to gun for it. After all, Cupertino launched a “phablet”-sized iPhone 6 Plus last year in response to consumer demand, which makes the prospect of a larger iPad seem a little less silly.