Remember how Apple shipped the first iPad units in April of this year? Is anyone really surprised that the rumors for the iPad 2 shipping in April 2011 have started to circulate?  Yes, so unexpected that people would expect Apple to put this product on a one year product cycle, because the company doesn’t do that with just about every other mobile product it produces.

iPadDigiTimes is reporting that Apple has ramped up production on the current iPad to a level that would let the company switch to iPad 2 production in Feb. and have enugh inventory to carry them to the end of March.

If the rumors prove to be true, Apple will take shipments of the first iPad 2 units in Feb. Foxconn, holding them back for releases until April.  The rumor continued that there had been some talk of the first wave coming in around early Jan., but the device’s firmware was said to not be close enough to being ready to ship at that time.

Of course, all of this is rumor at this point, but DigiTimes has a good track record, and this really does fit in with what everyone has been expecting.  Beyond the release date, many rumors about the next iteration of that tablet has it gaining at least a forward facing camera for video conferencing, and that it will also have significantly more RAM in it.

If all of this proves to be true, I imagine some of the people getting a current iPad for Christmas are going to be groaning roughly four months later when the new and improved model begins shipping.  of course, this is a common occurrence with Apple, but while you, me and the majority of people who read this site know that, does your aunt?  Your neighbor?  That person you see at the corner Starbucks?  Not everyone knows about the annual product cycle, so this will be a definite live and learn situation for many people come spring 2011.

What say you?  Excited for the iPad 2 yet?