Multiple sources have now reported that Apple is poised to unveil the next generation of the iPad, the hugely successful portable tablet computer. We pondered about an upcoming iPad 2 announcement back in January, but it seems more likely than ever we’ll get to see the iPad 2 on March 2nd, when Apple hosts an event aimed for the media in San Francisco.

[Update: Apple sent out media invites for the March 2nd event today. It will be held at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, starting at 10:00 am, the same location Apple has been using for major announcements and unveilingsĀ in recent years.]

The iPad 2 is supposed to feature a number of improvements from its predecessor – things like cameras, improved speakers, an improved display and better chips put into the device. The addition of the cameras may allow for facetime chat videos, which would be a handy feature, utilizing the possible cameras and improved speaker system. It is, importantly, also supposed to run on both GSM and CDMA networks globally. This means that the ‘iPad 2’ would theoretically connect to serviceable networks all over the world, a level of handiness which is plain and simply hard to put into words.

While the iPad generated over 15 million sales since its release last Spring, competition is arriving in bunches from several rival manufactures, most of which utilize the HoneyComb technology provided by Google Android. Many are also excited about the possibilities of a dual-core portable tablet system since Research in Motion made a buzz several months ago.

It is as yet unknown if Steve Jobs himself will be hosting the event – health problems have plagued Mr. Jobs over the last few years, and he is currently on-leave from Apple. However, his face is always on the forefront of new Apple product in both interviews and presentation, and shareholders would be encouraged seeing him at the presentation. He was feeling well enough to enjoy dinner with the President last week, so it’s likely that if this event is indeed the big reveal, Steve Jobs may make a return to work sooner than we thought, even if just for this occasion.

More news about the device and certain features are likely to pour out as we get closer to the due date for the event. In the meantime, we’ll keep you posted as news trickles out, though Apple are generally very tight-lipped about product released until the moment comes for the ultimate reveal.

What are your thoughts on the iPad 2? What features do you think it should have, and would you buy it if the second generation came out at some point this year?

Source: All Things Digital

tags: Apple, iOS, iPad

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