No, really, that 12.9-inch MaxiPad is totally on the way now

Analysts couldn't be wrong this time, could they?

Rumors of the much-fabled 12.9-inch iPad have surfaced once again, via a new analyst report.

Supply chain specialists IHS now say they believe the Reg-deemed "MaxiPad" is set to enter production in the latter part of 2015.

"This product has been in the planning stage for several years but looks to now be solid for a 2015 launch," IHS analyst Rhoda Alexander told El Reg. "Originally scheduled for earlier in 2015, the product has undergone some revisions that pushed out the production schedule to the third quarter."

Alexander cited sources within the manufacturing and supply pipeline that claim Apple will be discontinuing models in the MacBook Air line by the end of the year. "This leaves a pricing hole in the Apple lineup that is perfect for the larger iPad to fill," she said.

Of course, we've heard this kind of thing before. Rumors of a larger iPad date back to 2013, at least – although they've come up bust again and again and again and again.

So what makes us so convinced this will be the rumor that actually proves true? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. Seriously, we have no clue. Nobody has a clue.

That said, IHS does have some deep contacts in the supply chain that builds Apple products. According to Alexander, the giant iPad will launch in the last quarter of the year, as have Cupertino's last few tablet models.

"Watch for the 12.9-inch launch to tie in with Apple and IBM’s joint iOS application development for enterprise," Alexander said.

Apple's iPad line could use a breath of fresh air. Fondleslabs are one of the few Apple product lines to have declined in sales of late. And according to IHS, the new mega-slab might even take a page from Microsoft's Surface line – another rumor we've heard before.

"There are reports that the product will include a Bluetooth pen or stylus but IHS Technology has not yet been able to confirm that feature," Alexander said.

So there you have it. The MaxiPad launch is going to happen. Unless it doesn't happen. In which case, we warned you it probably wouldn't happen.®

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