Apple expected to announce new iPad on March 2

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SAN JOSE, Calif.Apple Inc. on Wednesday sent out invitations to media for what is presumed to be the unveiling of its next-generation iPad on March 2.

The announcement comes as a swarm of competitors launch tablets aimed at unseating the Cupertino, Calif.,
company’s dominant position in the new consumer computer category.
Apple’s iPad success last year has led to a host of me-too tablets. Now
Apple appears ready to try to once again put distance between its
tablet and the competition.

The electronic invitation is embedded with an image
of an app-like calendar date that is being peeled away, revealing an
iPad behind it.

“Come see what 2011 will be the year of,” it reads.

Analysts speculate that the latest iPad will include
a camera that allows use of Apple’s FaceTime video conference feature.
It also is likely to have a faster processor.

“I would anticipate the big additions to the iPad 2 will come in software,” said Needham & Co. analyst Charles Wolf. “I wouldn’t be surprised if 80, 70 percent (of the additions) will be software.”

And the iPad is liable to have an even more minimalist feel, he added. Apple CEO Steve Jobs and his team “have said, ‘Our best success is when we eliminate features, not when we add them,’ ” Wolf said.

The event will be held at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco.

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