Apple plans to begin trial production of a next generation iPad in October with an eye to an early 2012 launch, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday.
The newspaper, citing "people familiar with the situation," said Apple is working with component suppliers and its assembler in Asia on the iPad 3 and has ordered key components such as display panels and chips.
It said the next generation iPad is expected to feature a high resolution 2048-by-1536 pixel display compared with the 1024-by-768 display on the iPad 2.
The Journal quoted one unidentified component supplier to Apple as saying that the company has placed orders for parts for about 1.5 million iPad 3s in the fourth quarter.
Apple sources parts for the iPad around Asia and assembles the tablet computer at Taiwan's Hon Hai Precision Industry Co.
Apple sold 9.25 million iPads last quarter.
Explore further: Second-generation iPad in production: WSJ