The new iPad is expected by Apple watchers to debut in the next couple of months at a similar price range as the current iPad, though exact details couldn’t be learned. It currently costs between $499 and $829.
Piper Jaffray & Co. estimates Apple will sell 27 million iPads in 2011, and some investors expect as many as 35 million units in sales. “It’s going to be a critical growth driver,” said Gene Munster, an analyst with Piper Jaffray.
The production of the new iPad shows how Apple is moving forward in the wake of Chief Executive Steve Jobs’s disclosure last month that he was taking a medical leave for an unspecified ailment. The iPad, which debuted last April, has opened a new market and is critical to Apple’s success