Thursday, April 04, 2013

Do retailer price cuts signal a new iPad coming soon?

The iPad 4 and iPad mini were introduced 163 days ago, as of Thursday. To this point, the full-sized device has averaged about 311 days between refreshes, but a series of retailer price cuts that took place on Wednesday may be signaling a new iPad coming soon.

On Wednesday, Walmart, Best Buy and MacMall initiated clearance of third-generation -- not fourth -- iPads. The retailers were also seen reducing their iPad mini prices, as well. The cuts were roughly 30 percent across the board, perhaps good indicator that Apple is readying new versions.

However, rumors about a release date for a new iPad have been all over the calendar. There have been ones that say March or October, or August.

If Apple were to release a new iPad, it could signal that the Cupertino, Calif.-based company is moving to six month lifecycles for its tablet, perhaps with the one later in the year, ahead of the holiday shopping season, only a minor one.

The iPad 4 was only minimally upgraded from the iPad 3, with a faster processor, a Lightning connector instead of Apple's 30-pin dock connector, and dual-band wi-fi.

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