If rumors are to be believed, then Apple’s next generation of the iPad should be announced on March 7th. iMore reports that a reliable source has spread the information to them and Loop Insight’s Jim Dalrymple has confirmed with a “yep” (as is customary) that the date lines up with what he’s heard as well.

So now, the rest of the speculation begins. Quad-core or dual? LTE or WiFi+3G? There are strong arguments for and against just about ever possible tech spec, but the one thing that we can almost bet on is a more dense display, within the specifications to be labeled as a “Retina Display”.

For the quad-core versus dual-core debate, as well as the LTE vs 3G, it really comes down to battery life. While some, myself included, don’t think that we’ll see an LTE iPad before an LTE iPhone, it could happen with what is rumored to be a larger battery than previous models.

Conventional wisdom, however, would say that Apple will hold off on LTE’s power-draining implementation until things are a bit more refined. With the expanded display you can bet that it’s going to take more battery power and there simply might not be enough juice left at the end of a day to support an LTE radio as well, while still maintaining the lauded battery life of the device.

As for the quad-core versus dual-core? That’s a debate that comes down to a flip of the coin. My money is sitting on a dual-core A6, rather than a quad-core. but we may well be surprised. Again, I’m hedging my bets against power in lieu of battery life and I’m not alone.

At any rate, we’ll be covering the event as closely as possible on the 7th, so mark your calendars. The next question that remains is this – will we see another Apple popup store at SXSW as we did for the iPad 2?