Apple is reportedly "weeks away" from debuting the iPad 3, although the device's actual release date will come about a month later, in early March 2012.
Fake iPads made of clay were sold to as many as 10 people in Vancouver, Canada Courtesy/

The highly anticipated next generation iPad, dubbed iPad 3, will reportedly debut at Macworld/iWorld, which is scheduled for Jan. 26-28 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco.

According to Taiwan-based DigiTimes, Apple will use the MacWorld/iWorld event, once billed as the world's ultimate fan event for Apple lovers, as the launchpad for iPad 3.

DigiTimes, citing unnamed supply chain partners as its sources, reported before that the two iPad versions, instead of one, will launch at the event.

After the launch of the new iPad, the iPad 2 price will be bumped down and it will focus on competing with Amazon Kindle Fire and cover the entry-level market segment, DigiTimes said.

According to the report, the new iPads will have 9.7-inch screens, QXGA resolution (2,048x1,536 pixels) and quad-core A6 processor. The only difference between the two iPads is that one will have 8-MP CMOS image sensor while the other will feature a 5-MP rear-facing camera.

However, many tech experts and industry analysts are skeptical about the rumor. According to Jim Dalrymple, a well-sourced Apple commentator, DigiTimes' report is completely false.

I checked with a number of my sources [at Apple] today and an iPad 3 is not planned for release at Macworld, Dalrymple wrote on The Loop.

Venture Beat reported that it is unlikely that Apple will participate in Macworld/iWorld because the Cupertino-based company had dropped out of the event for several years. Apple has been conducting its own press events for the past several years and, as they have been receiving overwhelming response from the media and fans, the Jan. conference seems unlikely.

Gigaom also said it is unlikely that Apple will focus so much on improving the new iPad's camera as tablet users seldom take photos or videos with their device. And, it is likely that most iPad owners will also be carrying smartphones with them, and most, if not all, smartphones these days boast of anything between 5-MP and 8-MP cameras.

Meanwhile, IDG World Expo announced that over 20,000 people who use, create and love Apple products are expected to gather to celebrate the intersection of technology and art during the Macworld/iWorld event.

Marketwatch. com reported that the event will actually blend unparalleled educational opportunities with a show floor boasting innovations to see and buy for all Apple-related platforms, and a full agenda of new, cutting-edge music, film and art elements.

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