Will Apple make the dock connector shift in September?

Fresh from the Apple rumor mill: The company could release a new version of its latest iPad with a smaller dock connector, alongside its other iOS devices, iMore says.

Rumor alert: Apple could upgrade its recently released third-generation iPad this fall to support a smaller dock connector, according to the Apple-centric blog iMore.

The blog suggests that Apple will update its entire iOS lineup with the new connector as early as September 12. That would supposedly include the rumored iPhone 5, new iPod nanos and touches, the so-far mythical 7-inch iPad mini, and an updated version of the 9.7-inch iPad, according to unnamed sources.

Should this new rumor pan out, it remains unclear if the new iPad release would amount to a next-generation device -- i.e., the iPad 4 or whatever Apple would decide to call it -- or just a slightly modified version of the latest iPad.

Either way, an iPad refresh would mean that anyone who bought the latest iPad in March will have an out-of-date product before the year is out. Rumors about a smaller dock connector for the new iPhone 5 have been swirling around recently. If true, it's not surprising that Apple would eventually update all its devices with the same dock connector. But it's also far from clear that Apple would really risk upsetting its customers by releasing a new iPad so soon.

We've contacted Apple for more details and will update if and when we hear back.

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