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According to Taiwan-based supply chain makers, Apple is accelerating development of a rumored large-screen iPad, the iPad Pro, and is gearing up to launch the device by the end of the third quarter, indicating a Fall launch alongside the expected refresh to the existing iPad lineup.

As the unnamed sources asseverated, Apple has also asked its component suppliers and manufacturing partners to prepare for new models of 7.9 and 9.7-inch iPads…

The report, published Friday by DigiTimes, asserts that Apple is accelerating development of large-size iPads in light of Samsung’s recent introduction of the new 12-inch Galaxy tablets.

“Market sources indicated that Apple is likely to release a 12.9-inch model by the end of the third quarter at the earliest,” the report has it.

DigiTimes is not the most reliable publication but they more often than not are accurate when it comes to supply chain chatter. The story matches up to a recent research note by Evercore’s Patrick Wang, who said supply chain sources have confirmed the existence of the larger iPad.

The 12-inch iPad, Wang wrote, will be powered by Apple’s upcoming A8 processor and will launch in the Fall of 2014. He described the device as a crossover of sorts between the iPad and the MacBook Air, “in the same spirit of Microsoft’s Surface.”

Analyzing new display panels in development, display experts over at NPD DisplaySearch noted Apple’s alleged interest in 12.9-inch 2,732-by-2,048 pixel resolution panels. For all we know, these screens could be for a Retina MacBook Air upgrade, no?

This is just another iPad Pro rumor so take it with a pinch of salt as we have yet to see some concrete evidence of the device’s existence in the form of component leaks. On the other hand, a number of rumors have suggested that the iPad Pro is in the works.

That said, would a large-screen iPad make sense do you think?

Do we really need an iPad that bridges the gap between tablet and notebook?

And more importantly, will you buy it if Apple releases it?