Thursday, February 24, 2011

Apple sends out invites for March 2 event: iPad 2, anyone? (Ben Patterson)

Well, that didn't take long. Apple just sent out a wave of press invites for an event in San Francisco next Wednesday, just a day after a flurry of rumors that Cupertino was poised to announce the iPad 2.

The event will take place at 10 a.m. PT on March 2, at San Francisco's Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, the same venue where Steve Jobs unveiled the original iPad last January.

The Apple invite (as seen here on Fortune's Apple 2.0 blog) doesn't say anything specifically about a new iPad, but the graphic—a March 2 calendar page peeled back to reveal an iPad peeking out from behind—doesn't leave much room for doubt.

The none-too-subtle caption for the invite reads: "Come see what 2011 will be the year of."

News of a March 2 unveiling for the new iPad was first reported by All Things Digital's Kara Swisher on Tuesday, with the New York Times and Reuters quickly following up with confirmation.

The scoop also followed a series of rumors that claimed the iPad 2 and the next iPhone—neither of which have been officially announced, by the way—had been delayed, with Apple stock taking a significant hit in the wake of the chatter.

Word has it that the new iPad will be smaller and lighter than its predecessor, with at least one camera for FaceTime video chat and a souped-up processor.

Earlier rumors had raised hopes that the iPad 2 would arrive with a sharper, "retina"-style display, but the latest indications are that the screen on the revamped iPad will have the same 1024-by-768-pixel resolution as the original.

— Ben Patterson is a technology blogger for Yahoo! News.

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