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iPad 5 rumor rollup for the week ending April 17

Case revelations, display changes, June 18, giving up on iPad mini

By , Network World
April 18, 2013 03:31 PM ET

Network World - Starved for details, the iOSphere again turned to studying the dimension of third-party iPad 5 cases. That's right: products for a product that doesn't yet exist.

Most of the iOSphere ignored the fact that the case manufacturers seemed to be manufacturing cases for different versions of the Next iPad.

Also this week: assessing Apple's display technology options, where tweaking and improving may yield benefits without having to rush radical new technology changes; iDay is boldly declared to be June 18; and the strange new world of iPad market dynamics, wherein the iPad is so successful, no one is actually buying them.

You read it here second.

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"[T]his [iPad 5] case again suggests a slimmer and narrower iPad is in the works, which would mean that this mysterious tablet is likely to have the same screen size but thinner left and right-side bezels -- just like the iPad mini."

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iPad 5 will look like iPad mini, as revealed by "new" cases

Engadget was at the Hong Kong Electronics Fair and noticed one unnamed company displaying cases for the unannounced iPad 5. And who better to know what the Next iPad will look like, eh?

This isn't the first such case sighting. As Richard Lai notes, "cases for this unreleased 'iPad 5' have also been making the rounds in China ..." According to Lai, someone at the booth claimed the case is based on a "leaked mold" of the actual Next iPad.

Whether it is or not, the case "suggests a slimmer and narrower iPad is in the works, which would mean that this mysterious tablet is likely to have the same screen size but thinner left and right-side bezels," according to Lai.

Somewhat oddly, Lai doesn't give or try to deduce any dimensions about the case or the tablet for which it's supposedly designed.

Here's one of Engadget's photos of the case. The opening for the iPad's speaker, at right, seems to be closer to the Lightning port, at center, than the current iPad arrangement, which suggests the case manufacturer expects the Next iPad's body to be smaller. Here is Apple's photo showing the same area of the current iPad.

Finally, here's the comparable Apple photo of the iPad mini. The mini sides are rounder than the full-size iPad, which has a more pronounced slope on the underside.

TechCrunch's Matt Burns isn't content with just one case. In his post, he links to a page at China's Alibaba e-commerce website, packed with "iPad 5" cases.

"It's oft been circulated that Apple releases the dimensions of upcoming devices to accessory makers months before the announcement so the device launches to a full assortment of items," Burns assures his readers. And he's right: It has been "oft circulated." It would be nice to get what used to be called a "confirmation." "These factories have likely not seen the next iPad yet. ... But they know the device's dimensions," Burns asserts.

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