With five days to go before Apple unveils its latest iPad, 9to5 Mac has apparently debunked a rumor that Cupertino's new tablet would come with a $70-80 price increase. The hearsay started when MacRumors reported on unconfirmed price comparisons of the iPad 2 and iPad 3 that showed up on a Chinese microblogging site. However, one of9to5's sources tipped them off that the prices for the new iPad will remain consistent with first two versions, ranging from $499 for 16GB Wi-Fi to $829 for 64GB Wi-Fi + 3G. While this doesn't come as a huge surprise — Apple has set a precedent for iOS device pricing to stay consistent across upgrades — it is a relief to know there isn't going to be a premium for that 264ppi screen and whatever other tricks Apple has up its sleeve. This also puts the kibosh on another rumor: that Apple would be moving to a 8GB iPad 2, 16GB and 32GB iPad 3 lineup this time around.
Of course, final confirmation of this and all the other iPad 3 rumors will have to wait until Apple's official announcement at 10AM PST, on Wednesday, March 7th. You can bet we'll be there live.
One of the remaining mysteries ahead of the iPad 3 launch next week are the prices and configurations. If you don’t like surprises we have good news.
There was a rumor last week that gained traction which indicated that the US prices would increase by $70-$80. That doesn’t appear to be the case.
We’ve gotten word that iPad pricing is going to be the same across the board as the current iPad 2 models which should be no big surprise given Apple’s history – they rarely raise prices. Even better, some countries with currencies doing better than the US dollar should expect to see marginal drops in prices.
While we’re squashing, the configurations appear to be the same as current 16/32/64GB. One of the strange succession of posts from Digitimes this week said that Apple would move to 8GB/16GB/32GB. That appears even less likely than before, if that is even possible.
Update: This has no bearing on LTE one way or another