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WSJ Says Apple iPad 2 Currently in Production

Apple’s next iPad 2 is currently in production and features a front-facing camera, according to unnamed sources speaking to the Wall Street Journal.

Apple’s new iPad tablet is much more than just a fancy digital picture frame or oversized iTouch; it is by most accounts the latest in state-of-the-art computer tablets, capable of performing the functions of a laptop computer with much more style, ease, and comfort.

“The new iPad will be thinner and lighter than the first model,” the Wall Street Journal reports.

Apple plans to sell and distribute its new iPad through AT&T and Verizon Wireless, the nation’s largest 3G cellphone networks.

The Journal explained the iPad’s potential to revolutionize the cellular market:

For mobile carriers, tablets like the iPad present a new revenue source. “Tablets are an important growth opportunity for wireless operators who are looking for new ways to drive data revenue,” said Dan Hays, a partner with the consulting firm PRTM, adding that Sprint and T-Mobile could be significantly hurt again by being shut out from the market leading device.

According to ITWire, the new iPad “will come in 3 versions — one with Wi-Fi only, the next with Wi-Fi, GPS and a 3G/UMTS chip, and the third new version is expected to be one that offers Wi-Fi, GPS, 3G/UMTS and CDMA, thus delivering Verizon compatibility in the iPad without external CDMA/Wi-Fi modems being required.”

In addition to features for viewing and snapping photos, watching movies, playing videogames and reading eBooks, the new iPad, according to Apple, includes the following features:

  • YouTube HD
  • GPS road map
  • half an inch thin, weighing at one and half pounds
  • a 9.7-inch wide IPS display, which provides for increased high definition viewing angles
  • a full capacitive multi-touch system
  • 1 GHz Apple A4 processor chip
  • a flash storage device ranging from either 16 GB to 64 GB
  • a built-in WiFi 802.11n for high-speed wireless Internet
  • a built-in Bluetooth 2.1 that includes EDR for faster data transfer
  • an accelerometer and compass
  • a high-quality speaker and microphone with 30-pin connector
  • a batter life of up to 10 hours

Some featured applications will include:

  • all of the apps already available on the iPhone and iTouch
  • the App Store, allowing users to purchase and download additional apps and services
  • an eBook app called iBooks, which will essentially double the iPad as an eBook reader like the Kindle or Nook
  • iWork, which will give users the convenience to do their work from the tables such as creating spread sheets, word documents, slide presentations as well as e-mail to import/export files

With an application such as the iWork, individuals in the academic, business, corporate, legal, and/or other parts of the professional world will able to use the new iPad to do assignments for their jobs.

This all sounds great, and Apple will decide to walk that tightrope between its competition and its customer base, an unveiling event for the next iPad could be in the works.