A recently released report said that Apple’s partner suppliers have ramped up production of high-resolution LCD panels bound for the next-generation iPad, with output holding steady at the same levels seen during the tablet’s launch last year. Citing data from market research firm IHS iSuppli, CNET recently reported that display production for Apple’s next-gen iPad mini is now at a level “similar” to that seen when the tablet was first unveiled in November 2012. The publication also added to recent rumors claiming that Apple’s tablet will sport a high-resolution Retina panel.

The firm’s director of mobile and emerging displays, Vinita Jakhanwal, noted that volumes are similar to the fourth quarter of last year. LG Display is expected to be the primary screen supplier for the Retina iPad mini, at least with existing Apple partner Sharp expected to follow later in the production cycle.

According to a recent report from The Wall Street Journal, Apple may possibly add Samsung to the supplier list as well despite the ongoing legal disputes the two tech giants are in the middle of. The move is thought to ensure that an adequate number of units will be available for launch. The next-gen mini is expected to keep the 7.9-inch form factor but up resolution to 2,048 by 1,536 pixels. This equates to a pixel density of 324 pixels per inch. Finally Jakhanwal said AU Optronics has also started furnishing Apple with 7.9-inch panels for current-generation models, but it’s unclear if the company will be able to scale up its technology to meet the Retina display requirements.

There are also several rumors regarding a launch date for Apple’s “iPad mini 2” which have been afloat. Some are saying that the tablet will be released in the fourth quarter while others are predicting a 2014 launch. Ultimately we will just have to wait and see.

Source: IHS Suppli via CNET