Mass production of a new full-sized iPad has begun, with the tablet expected to be unveiled by the end of the current quarter or early next quarter, Bloomberg reported Tuesday.
Manufacturing complications may restrict output of the device, the publication said, due to a new anti-reflection coating being added to make the 9.7-inch tablet easier to read. Also, citing people with knowledge of the matter, Bloomberg said a new version of the 7.9-inch iPad Mini is starting production and could be available by the end of the year.
An Apple representative declined to comment.
The latest iPads would be added to Apple's lineup of new devices expected to come out around the critical holiday season. The company is reportedly planning an event on September 9 to unveil its new iPhone models, which are expected to include larger screens.
The new iPads would come at a crucial time for Apple, which has reported slumping demand for its tablets. The iPad is Apple's second-largest revenue generator, behind the iPhone, but it's posted two consecutive quarters of declining sales and has missed analysts' projections. CEO Tim Cook last month said he remains optimistic about the device and said his company should be able to continue leading innovation in the tablet market.
According to researcher IDC, Apple stayed the top tablet provider in the second quarter, shipping 13.3 million units and holding 27 percent of total market share, down from 14.6 million units a year earlier. Samsung was second, with 8.5 million units, or 17 percent of the market, up slightly from a year ago.
Apple also faces stiffer competition in the smartphone market against high-end device makers such as Samsung and lower-tier manufacturers including Huawei and ZTE.