Get Ready for the 12.9-inch iPad, Maybe

Insiders say Apple will ship a 12.9-inch iPad next yearApple is reportedly working on a 12.9-inch version of the iPad with plans to release the device in 2015. The tablet would be even bigger than the 9.7-inch iPad Air and would dwarf the 7.9-inch iPad mini.

Word of the nearly 13-inch iPad comes from insider sources, according to Newsday. The sources said Apple plans to start production some time during the first quarter of 2015.

Apple started with the 9.7-inch display form factor when it introduced the original iPad, and later went smaller with the iPad mini. Going bigger hasn't happened yet, but that doesn't mean the company can't add a larger screen version to its tablet lineup.

The company has already shown it isn't afraid to increase screen size in its mobile devices. Apple introduced the iPhone and iPod touch with a 3.5-inch display, then later increased that to 4-inches. Reports claim when the iPhone 6 is introduced it will be available with 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch display options.

Assuming Apple is planning on selling a 13-inch iPad, it may be a move to help boost its tablet sales. While the company still sells more tablets than its competitors, the overall market isn't as strong as it once was, leaving Apple and other companies looking for new ways to kick start growth again.

Apple hasn't said what its plans for the iPad line include, or even hinted at a time frame for new model launches. The company has, however, been updating its mobile device lineup ahead of the year-end holiday buying season, and is expected to announce new iPhone models on September 9.

Unless Apple plans to roll out new iPhones and iPads at the same time, an iPad refresh announcement will likely follow later, but still in time for holiday sales. Assuming the insider sources are right, that update won't include the 12.9-inch iPad.