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Mobile Accessories

Targus already shipping iPad 3 cases

Targus sent over its new Slim Case within hours of the new iPad's unveiling. Did it have inside info on the new tablet before it launched?

Targus has gotten an early jump on new cases for the iPad 3rd Generation (click to enlarge). David Carnoy/CNET

After leaks in the past, Apple has been very careful about what information it doles out to accessory makers in advance of new product launches. It's unclear how much info Targus got from Apple (or some other source), but we can tell you an hour after the new iPad officially went live, we received some new case samples from Targus in packaging that was labeled "for iPad 3rd Generation."

That's a safe, generic way to describe Apple's third iPad, but since Apple is simply calling the new iPad the "new iPad" it leads to some suspicions that Targus did have details on the new iPad before launch. One hint is that when you buy an iPad from Apple it's labeled "iPad (3rd generation)," which is how it now refers to its iPod Touch line, with the generation in parentheses. Also, a tipster told Phone Arena two days before the iPad's launch that Targus iPad 3 cases were already on their way to Best Buy.

Maybe I'm reading too much into all this but it's always fun to speculate (Targus isn't commenting on what inside sources it might have had but it appears several case makers knew the new iPad would be only a millimeter or so bigger).

As far as the new cases go, a few are retreads of Targus' iPad 2 cases (Versavu and Versavu Keyboard Case). But some are brand new, including the Simply Basic Cover ($29.99), Slim Case ($49.99), and Business Folio and Stand ($49.99). The new ones all seem well designed and fairly lightweight. The more expensive models include the automatic on/off feature when opening and closing the cover.

Note: While the cases have been designated "for iPad 3rd Generation" we didn't have a problem fitting the iPad 2 into the Slim Case.

Targus new cases are designed for the new iPad but we had no problem using the Slim Case with an iPad 2. David Carnoy/CNET