Apple is reportedly working on a new version of its popular iPad device that will include an integrated SIM card.
Apple is understood to be moving ahead with an integrated SIM card for its iPad device in the coming weeks. The Telegraph claims that Apple is planning to bring out integrated-SIM versions of the iPad in the holiday season or soon after. Apple is able to do so as no mobile operators subsidise the iPad devices for sales. Apple has also reportedly backed down from a proposed plan that would see it create its own iPhone SIM cards.
Apple had planned to avoid mobile operators at point of sale in order to create a direct sales route to consumers. The Sunday Telegraph revealed the plans at the weekend. Apple had been working on an iPhone with an integrated SIM card so that customers could purchase an iPhone direct from Apple without signing up for a contract. A senior source at a mobile operator told the Telegraph:
"Apple has long been trying to build closer and closer relationships and cut out the operators. But this time they have been sent back to the drawing board with their tails between their legs."
Apple's iPad currently supports a micro SIM which allows consumers to purchase a 3G data plan. iPad owners can purchase a data plan at the original time of sale or anytime afterwards. Apple is also expected to issue a software update for iPad owners in weeks leading up to Christmas. The company recently issued an 4.2.1 iOS update to developers which brings multi-tasking, iOS 4 features and printing to iPad devices. It is rumoured that Apple may issue the update as early as this week.