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iPad 3 logic board snapped, A5X chip hints at minor upgrade

A picture reportedly showing the next iPad's logic board has surfaced online, showing off an 'A5X' chip.

A picture reportedly showing the next iPad's logic board has surfaced online, part of which looks to be dubbed the 'A5X' chip.

MacRumors spotted the image, which originally surfaced on Chinese site Weiphone. Until now the chip reportedly running inside the iPad 3 had been pegged as the A6, seeing as the iPad 2 and iPhone 4S both sport the A5 chip, and the original iPad and iPhone 4's processor was called the A4.

The 'A5X' name chimes with reports from earlier in the month, where what looked to be iPad 3 diagnostic info listed the much-anticipated tablet as sporting a processor with a model number ending in '45X'.

As the A4 and A5 chips' model numbers supposedly ended in '30X' and '40X' respectively, at the time we thought the '45X' chip was the rumoured A6. But in light of this new snap, it would seem to make more sense if the '45X' bit of model number actually translates to 'A5X'.

MacRumors reckons that a '1146' date code on the chip above suggests that it was manufactured in the 46th week of 2011, which was 14-20 November.

If the photo above is genuine (and we've no way of knowing that it is), the A5X moniker would hint that Apple's next tablet will be a slight step up in processing power, rather than a huge leap forward in polygon-eating abilities. An iPad 2S, perhaps.

That wouldn't surprise me at all. Apple's seen very little in the way of serious competition when it comes to tablets, and while the gadget-hungry part of me would love to see a massively different device, Apple doesn't need to radically overhaul the iPad yet -- it's still making the company a tonne of money.

I'm expecting to see a higher resolution display in the next iPad though -- that's the area in which the current iPad definitely needs a boost. Well, that and the rubbish camera.

Are you excited about the iPad 3? Or would you rather own an Android tablet? Tell me in the comments, or on our Facebook wall.

Image credit: MacRumors