To absolutely no one’s surprise the rumors of what we can expect from Apple’s inevitable iPad 2 are beginning to heat up. Let us not forget that it was Jan. of 2010 that the iPad was introduced, even though it didn’t ship until early April. And, keeping with Apple’s penchant for keeping its products on a one year life cycle means that we are definitely drawing nearer by the day to the announcement of what new features the second iteration will contain.

iPadDigiTimes is reporting that the Chinese-language Economy Daily News has listed five new features that we can expect from the highly anticipated tablet:

  • Front facing camera for FaceTime support
  • Thinner glass
  • Retina display technology
  • 3-axis gyroscopes
  • USB connector

The front camera seems like a no-brainer, and has already reportedly been seen in the wild.  Also, considering that the iPod Touch and computers have received FaceTime support, it seems obvious that Apple is trying to get this technology into every device it can.

Thinner glass also seems like a given as Steve Jobs’ obsession with smaller, sleeker items is no secret.  The thinner and lighter the device is, the happy he’ll be.

While the iPhone 4 and iPod Touch 4 have benefited greatly from Retina technology, we’re not exactly sure how much a bigger screen will benefit from this display technology.  The current iPad display is nothing to sneeze at, but we’re sure everyone will welcome it all the same.

As for the gyroscopes … duh.

The biggest question is around the USB connector.  Europe has mandated that all mobile devices, including the iPhone, change over to a mini USB connection so that there can be universal chargers.  While this is something we’re all for, Apple likes its current proprietary connection as it allows it to control third-part devices, so we can’t see them being too happy about switching over to this system.  While the mandate is for mobile devices, does the iPad really qualify?  Only time will tell on this particular guess.

Overall this is pretty much a, “yeah, this is all happening” list of changes to the iPad, but that USB connection is going to be the truly surprising one.

What say you?  Agree with this list?