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Apple value nears half a trillion dollars following iPad 3 invites

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Apple's valuation rose to almost half a trillion dollars following the announcement of what is believed to be the iPad 3 launch event.

The Cupertino-based company's share prices rose by 1.8% and its stock prices skyrocketed after it sent out invites for a press conference dated March 7, The Financial Times reports.

Apple iPad Event Invitation

© Apple

The lights on the Apple are switched off in memory of Steve Jobs at a store in Hong Kong

© PA Images / Vincent Yu/AP



Yesterday, Apple's shares increased by $9.65 (£6) to close the day at $535.41 (£336.12). The firm's latest net worth of $499.2 billion (£313.4bn) makes it the most valuable company in the world, exceeding its closest rival Exxon by some $90 billion ($56bn).

Apple will hold its media event at Yerba Buena Centre for the Arts in San Francisco at 10am PST (6pm GMT) on Wednesday, March 7. Based on the company's past history, the next generation iPad is expected to arrive on the market on March 16 or March 23.

The tablet device is widely tipped to feature a higher resolution screen akin to the retina display on the iPhone 4S. An A6 quad-core CPU and improved rear-mounted camera are also likely inclusions.

Apple did not officially confirm that the iPad 3 will be unveiled on March 7, with some sources speculating that a high definition version of the iPad 2 could be revealed instead.

> iPad behind the buzz: What to expect from Apple's launch event

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