Apple Inc. is preparing to begin the manufacturing process for the iPad 3 according to a new report.

All Things Digital this week claimed the next iPad is heading into production soon based on a supply chain check by an analyst from Susquehanna Financial Group LLLP.

The firm estimates that Apple is increasing its iPad supply production to 12 to 14 million units, up from 11 to 13 million units in the forth quarter.

It suggests the increase is due to an estimated 600,000 to 1 million iPad 3 builds.

The report estimates an early 2012 launch for the device.

The iPad, which currently dominates the tablet market at 30 million units sold, shipped 9.25 million units in the third quarter of 2011.

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