Leaked 'iPad 3' Part Shows Smaller Dock Connector, Expected Spring 2012

Dock connector components purportedly from an iPad 3 prototype have appeared online apparently emanating from one of Apple's Asian suppliers.

The leaked images published on Japanese website Makotakara, suggest Apple's next iPad will have a smaller dock connector, which means it would be incompatible with current devices. This accessory seems to indicate that the iPad 3 will be thinner though the Japanese site claims the screen size should stay the same (no mention of the resolution though).

This dock connector uses the same 30-pin output as the one used for iPad and iPad 2 but the form is more streamlined.

According to the report Apple is rushing to complete iPad 3 production by the end of January before the Chinese new year arrives. Macotakara claims the new tablet could then be released as early as March 2012.

Analysts are already lining-up expected features for the next-generation iPad and speculation ranges from an iPad 2 Plus, with just minor upgrades to a highly evolved iPad 3. Reports have mentioned 3D capabilities (however unlikely), A6 quad-core chipset, an improved camera, better gaming graphics, increased RAM and of course it will run iOS 5.x.