Now that we got the next iPhone rumors out of the way with the release of the iPhone 4S the rumor mill has once again turned towards the iPad 3, with information coming out of China hinting at the iPad 3 receiving a smaller dock connector when it arrives on the scene in March 2012.
It is Japanese blog Mactokara that is breaking the news that Apple is rushing the iPad 3 into production to avoid delays due to Chinese new year taking place 22-28 January. Their “reliable sources” also says that the iPad 3 will get a new and smaller dock connector, which is bad news for anyone that is looking to get an iPad 3 and that already owns accessories such as iPad speaker docks or cases, that more than likely will not work with a new smaller dock connector. I could easily see Apple bringing out an adapter that would sort the compatibility issue out, but of course that would be at an additional cost for the user.
The redesigned dock connector is rumored to feature the same number of pins, but have a smaller shape. In some ways it makes sense for Apple to change this as (a) it fits in with their wireless strategy following the launch of AirPlay streaming and iCloud, and (b) it will get people to upgrade their accessories and ensure more licensing income from manufacturers.
Based on these rumors it looks like the iPad 3 will have the same size as the current iPad 2, and it is uncertain whether or not it will receive the rumored iPad 3 retina display. Personally i doubt Apple will deliver an new iPad 3 without Retina display or other significant feature upgrades, and i’m talking more than just addition of Siri.