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Apple iPad 2 said to sport über speaker

Hopes for USB port, SD slot dashed?

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Apple's iPad 2 will be slightly smaller than the current model, be a little less curvy - think of the latest, flat-backed iPod Touch rather than the angular iPhone 4 - but don't expect it to sport either the rumoured USB port or SD card slot.

So claims Japanese website Macotakara, citing Chinese moles. The big gaps seen on shots of upcoming cases for the iPad 2 are not there to make room for said portage but for a "wide-range" speaker with a grille that extends from the edge round to the back of the iPad.

We're not surprised. While we'd like to see both SD card and USB support built into the iPad 2, we can't see Apple adding them. It's too keen on iTunes and selling accessories for that.

The site says the tablet will sport the same size display - 9.7in - as the current model, so the small size reduction - from 243 x 190mm to 239 x 186mm will undoubtedly be due to a smaller bevel.

Other sources say the shrink - such as it is - will be accompanied by a more substantial reduction in the iPad's weight.

World+Dog also expects at least a forward-facing camera to tap into Apple's vido-call brand, FaceTime, and possibly a video-capanble 5Mp cam on the back. ®

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