A week back, we told you about the release dates of the iPad 2 and PlayBook tablets clashing sometime in April or May. Now, we’re seeing news reports on the net saying Foxconn Electronics’ plants in Shenzhen, China have been notified (or ordered, as Communist China likes it) that they will have to begin shipping Apple’s iPad 2 in the next three months.

Catch me next Feb!

The initial shipment could reach 400,000 – 600,000 units and the numbers will probably grow, especially considering how the iPad has been selling for some time now. Unlike what we said earlier, this source says that Apple had planned to start full-fledged production in January, but had to drop the idea as the device’s firmware is still in the testing phase. Foxconn has new plants in Chengdu, but they are yet to be built, making the Shenzhen plant the only option to ship these products from. The company’s component-manufacturing partners have been notified of the shipments schedule.

The iPad 2 has been in the spotlight recently, with rumors of a front facing camera, retina display and the likes. One very interesting point is that Apple has not confirmed any of these rumors, which just goes to show how hungry for Apple hype the general public is.

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