Want CNET to notify you of price drops and the latest stories?

iPad 3 to feature a Retina Display?

Images leaked from the iOS 5 SDK show double the resolution of the current iPad, leading some to believe that the next iPad could sport a high-resolution 2,048x1,536 Retina Display.

Lance Whitney Contributing Writer
Lance Whitney is a freelance technology writer and trainer and a former IT professional. He's written for Time, CNET, PCMag, and several other publications. He's the author of two tech books--one on Windows and another on LinkedIn.
Lance Whitney
2 min read

Will the iPad 3 sport a Retina Display?

Will the next iPad offer a Retina Display?
Will the next iPad offer a Retina Display? Apple

Images found in the software development kit for iOS 5 have kicked the rumor mill back into gear.

Tech site TechUnwrapped reported yesterday that a tipster found images in the framework for integrating Twitter into Apple's next mobile OS that were double the 1,024x768 resolution used in the current iPad. Based on those images, TechUnwrapped said this could mean the next-gen iPad will offer a 2,048x1,536 Retina Display.

However, since the high-resolution images were initially found only in the Twitter framework, TechUnwrapped seemed dubious that an iPad 3 would hit the market this September at the same time that iOS 5 is released--a rumor that was floating around several months ago. But a later update to the TechUnwrapped story also revealed high-resolution images found in Apple's new Newsstand app, offering another potential piece of evidence for a Retina Display.

Apple's Retina Display launched last summer with the iPhone 4. Its high density of 326 pixels per inch makes text and images look smoother and crisper than on previous displays.

The discovery of these Twitter and Newsstand images has created some debate among tech commentators.

9to5Mac sees the images as a "strong indication" that the next iPad will include a 2,048x1,536 Retina Display. However, TechRadar asserts the new images "prove nothing" because similar high-resolution images were found in some iPad icons earlier this year, but then the iPad 2 failed to include a Retina Display.

With the iPad 2 already several months old, more rumors about the iPad 3 have been popping up lately.

A DigiTimes article says that Apple is already drumming up and certifying parts for the next iPad, with component makers eyeing a 2012 launch date. A peek into the iOS 5 code by sources cited by TUAW discovered that Apple may release two different iPad models--a traditional Wi-Fi-only version and a world-mode edition capable of running under either CDMA or GSM.