The firm's SVP of global marketing Phil Schiller told The Wall Street Journal that the tablet was not named 'iPad 3' because that would have been "predictable".
Apple CEO Tim Cook unveiled the new iPad yesterday, showing of its high resolution Retina display, super-fast A5X processor and 5-megapixel camera. The company's shares fell slightly following the product launch, but tech experts have hailed the device as a welcome upgrade.
Some analysts claim that Apple's move away from numbered iPads is a bid to bring the brand in line with its other products, such as MacBook Pro and MacBook Air. Some have even predicted that its next mobile phone could simply be called 'iPhone'.
Apple also announced a new version of its Apple TV product supporting HD movie streaming at the event. Apple-branded connected TV sets are expected to follow at some point in the future.
The new iPad will be available in the UK, US, Canada, Germany, France, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia and Japan on Friday, March 16.
> New iPad: Apple share price dips after launch
View the new iPad in pictures below: