ipad3mockupThe rumor mill is heating up that the iPad 3 could indeed be releasing before the holidays, bringing with it LTE support and a retina display.

According to a report from The Wall Street Journal, a research group named CSLA has been looking into the Apple supply chain, and they feel that there is already movement on the iPad 3.  “While most vendors appear fixated on matching the specs and features of iPad 2, our checks suggest Apple will release iPad 3 in time for the holiday season, sporting a better display and LTE capabilities,” said a quote attributed to the researchers.

While always good to stir up rumors and interest by guessing when the iPad 3 is coming, the issue is that Steve Jobs clearly said when the current model was announced that 2011 was “the year of the iPad 2”, which was a backhanded way of ending rumors of a third generation that were already circulating at that time.  Of course Apple is always within its rights to change its mind, but does it really seem like the smart business decision to release two versions of the iPad within the same calendar year, let alone in only seven to eight months?  That seems highly unlikely from a company that is so well known for making good business decisions.

It is quite possible that these will be some of the features in the iPad 3, but our guess is that it will be sometime in 2012 before it’s released.

What do you think?  Is the iPad 3 coming out before the holiday shopping season?

[via – Boy Genius Report, The Wall Street Journal]