A rumour has emerged that Apple's next entry into its iPad tablet series will house an improved thinner and lighter battery module.

The rumour stemmed from the Taiwan Economic News reports (via BGR). It suggested that the tech giant had already contracted Taiwanese suppliers Simplo and Dynapack to build a thinner and lighter battery for the iPad 3.

The report indicated that the batteries would cost between 20 to 30 per cent more than those currently used in the iPad 2.

The Taiwan Economic News said it had received the news from "institutional investors." It went on to suggest that the battery pack is currently scheduled for mass production on the first quarter of 2012.

"Institutional investors pointed out that the battery pack for iPad 3, scheduled to be massively produced in the first quarter of next year, has been redesigned to be thinner and lighter with a longer service life than [the] iPad 2 edition's.

"Initial deliveries of the new batteries are said to be set for the fourth quarter of this year, with mass production beginning in the first quarter of next year," read the Taiwan Economic News report.

The new rumour is the second reported by the Taiwan Economic News this week. The first appeared on Tuesday, suggesting that Apple has selected two Taiwanese companies to build the 8-megapixel camera used in its next generation iPhone smartphone.

To date Apple has released no firm data regarding its next-generation iPad 3. As with the much-awaited iPhone 5, all current reports regarding the device are based on hearsay, with the authenticity of each rumour being next to impossible to verify.

Apple declined to comment of the authenticity of the Taiwan Economic News' report.