Although Apple hasn’t officially confirmed it yet, there have been many rumors about the specifics of the iPad 3. Based on these rumors, iPad 2 owners have started to sell their tablets; eagerly waiting for the announcement of the iPad 3, which is scheduled for March 7. People are speculating about every possible new feature for the new generation of iPads. The additions, which I’ll discuss later, haven’t been officially confirmed by Apple yet, but there are a few interesting rumors circulating around at this point. In December 2011, there had been plenty of rumors about two versions of the iPad 3: a mid-range version and a high-end one. The mid-range version is thought to be a mini iPad 3, while the high-end version is about the same size as the current iPad.

The iPad 2 was released almost a year ago and Apple added some new features the first iPad didn’t have. For example: iPad users were wondering why the iPad didn’t have a built-in camera, so naturally, a built-in camera became part of the iPad 2. The same story can be said about the dual-core processor that was added to the iPad 2. Apple is known to do this whenever it launches a new product. You can expect there will be new models coming out each year, which is a good thing as technology continuously develops.

What does Apple have in store for you? What can you expect from the iPad 3?

MacRumors has already stated that the iPad 3 might have a retina display (like the iPhone 4 currently uses) with twice the linear resolution (2048 x 1536) than the iPad 2, which means clearer and sharper images. The iPad 3 is rumored to run iOS 5.1, which will assumingly also be used for the iPhone 5 and the iPod Touch. Furthermore, it will have Apple’s newest processor “A6,” and some expect it to be a quad-core ARM-based processor.

What about the camera? The iPad 2 has two cameras: a front camera (0.3 MP) and a back camera (1MP). However, users weren’t satisfied with the two: it seemed that the cameras don’t work well for stills, while Apple’s competitors have integrated 2-3MP cameras. It is said that these cameras are more similar to the iPod Touch’s than to the iPhone 4. Here’s the good news: according to the Washington Post, there’s a realistic chance of the new iPad having a built-in 8MP camera, which means an immediate improvement in the quality of photos – more reason to look forward to its release.

Some other rumored new features of the iPad 3 include:

–          SD card slot/USB: The inclusion of these options will save consumers a lot of frustration. It is the most common and convenient way that people save files and it was definitely an obvious missing feature in the iPad.

–          Siri: The well-known voice-command service has had a lot of publicity, due to the personification and characteristics of Siri. It has even come to a point where users refer to Siri as “she.”

–          4G LTE Technology: The Wallstreet Journal has confirmed that the Apple tablet will run on 4G data networks powered by Verizon and AT&T. This technology will significantly change data speeds as it is 10 times faster than 3G.

–          NFC: Near Field Communication technology is used for mobile payments or file transfers (Android 4.0 Ice Scream Sandwich). It enables communication between devices through radio waves. In this regard, it is possible for Android devices to simply “touch” and share information by using Android’s Beam. This sounds perfectly useful, however, there are still a couple of security issues ,and this would be a viable reason for Apple to not use it. We’ll find out March 7!

As long as Apple doesn’t confirm any of the tablet’s specifics, one can only speculate. Do users want these upgrades? Of course. Will Apple provide the consumers’ needs by combining most of the desired features into a single device? Given the launch history of Apple products, probably not. There’s always another piece of technology that’s waiting around the corner, ready to be implemented in the next iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch, but that will not stop Apple fans from purchasing the latest iProduct.

What features do you hope the iPad 3 will have? Let me know in the comments!