We've all heard the rumors that the iPhone is heading to Verizon. In fact, many respectable sources have locked it down as confirmed. It's been kind of quiet for the iPad. Verizon just started selling Wi-Fi iPads in its stores, but what about a 3G model?
According to All Things Digital, Wedge Partners analyst Brian Blair believes that the next iPad will contain a dual CDMA/GSM chip (Verizon and Sprint run on CDMA). The multimode chip would allow Apple to finally get a foot in Verizon's massive customer install base. At the same time Apple would not need to produce two separate iPad models. It would only need an iPad that works on multiple networks — globally.
Blair also speculates that the next iPad will receive a FaceTime camera and a slimmer body. The video chatting camera is likely, seeing as how Apple is pushing hard for FaceTime on its iPhone 4 and iPod touch 4G devices. As for the slimmer body, a new patent suggests Apple is considering using carbon fiber instead of aluminum.
Things are really starting to heat up now. Verizon selling the Wi-Fi iPads with its MiFi hotspot is really just the icing on the cake — a way of gauging how interested its customers are in the iPad. An iPad with a CDMA 3G radio could potentially make Verizon a juggernaut in the tablet space.