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Predicting What's Next for Apple's iPad

What is the bottom line here? All the logic points to Apple making an LTE iPad available no later than September or October. Perhaps it will be called the iPad 3, or perhaps iPad 2 LTE. Apple likes to keep things simple, which would point to iPad 3, but on the other hand nothing, or at least not much, would change to the WiFi-only version of the iPad 2. Perhaps including NFC in addition to LTE would point to calling it the iPad 3.

Later, some time between March 2012 and October 2012 -- probably later rather than sooner -- Apple would make the iPad 4 available, and its major feature would be the doubling of the screen resolution from 768 x 1024 to 1536 x 2048.

So there you have it: For the iPad, LTE could be available in a model refresh to happen in the next 90 days, whereas a doubling of the screen resolution will more likely follow one year after that. NFC could go either way, but market logic would suggest sooner rather than later.

I make it clear that all of this is pure speculation based on publicly available sources. I have not spoken to anybody at Apple, Apple's carrier partners, or Apple's suppliers.

At the time of publication, Wahlman was long AAPL, RIMM and GOOG.

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This commentary comes from an independent investor or market observer as part of TheStreet guest contributor program. The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of TheStreet or its management.

Anton Wahlman was a sell-side equity research analyst covering the communications technology industries from 1996 to 2008: UBS 1996-2002, Needham & Company 2002-2006, and ThinkEquity 2006-2008.
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