Next iPad Takes After Thin, Light Mini

The same touch-panel technology that made the iPad mini thin and light will likely feature in the next iPad, which is currently being produced by Apple Inc.’s Asian suppliers, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

What many consumers generally call a “screen” consists of multiple layers, and the “touch panel” specifically refers to the layer equipped with touch sensors, between the liquid-crystal display and the outermost cover glass. The iPad mini, according to a teardown report by research firm IHS iSuppli, uses a film-based touch panel, which is thinner and lighter than the glass-based touch panel that the current full-size model uses. Following the iPad mini’s success, Apple plans to use the film-based touch panel in its next regular-size iPad, the people said.

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