AU Optronics and LG will make LCD panels for a 7.85in iPad that Apple will launch in the third quarter of 2012, according to reports.

Chinese-language Economic Daily News says that AU Optronics has been approached to make panels for the device and that its associate company, backlight unit manufacturer Forhouse, will also be part of Apple's supply chain for the new, smaller iPad.

LG Display will apparently also manufacture LCD panels for the device, the report claims, though Samsung has apparently been excluded from Apple's supplier list for the device, despite recently becoming the largest display panel manufacturer for Apple's existing iPad line-up.

The report also claims that it will be Pegatron, not Foxconn, that assembles the units for Apple.

Rumours that Apple has been working on a smaller iPad have gained strength in recent weeks, with Samsung's investment bank arm convinced that such a device will launch in the third quarter of 2012.