The Korea Times is reporting that a “first tier display supplier” is already manufacturing a 12.9 inch panel for iPads. According to the report, Apple is looking to bring the bigger iPad to market sometime “early next year”…

The official said Apple is increasingly interested in introducing bigger iPads as the U.S.-based consumer electronics giant is already acknowledging that tablets will replace PCs in an era of convergence.

“The 12.9-inch iPad will have improved picture quality. As the Apple partner intends to boost its lineup for displays that have almost ultra high-definition (UHD) quality, the upcoming iPad will provide very clear quality similar to that of UHD,” said the official.

In support of this report, rumours of a larger iPad have been swirling over the last few months. The Wall Street Journal said that Apple was testing iPads measuring ‘slightly less’ than 13 inches,  back in July. More recently, a questionable report from DisplaySearch claimed that an iPad featuring a 2732×2048 12.9 inch is scheduled for 2014. The screen resolution quoted by DisplaySearch corroborates with the Korea Times claim that the upcoming iPad will provide a ‘very clear quality’.

Therefore, the possibility of a larger iPad is not a ridiculous claim. However, it should be noted that the Korea Times’ claim that Apple is preparing to launch the new form factor early next year is currently not backed up by other sources. Therefore, the reliability of this latter statement is very circumspect.