The Amazon tablet we’ve been hearing about every now and then in past weeks is inching closer to release, folks. Industry publication DigiTimes reported this morning that Amazon picked a third supplier for touch panel parts as it gears up for manufacturing. Looks like TPK Holdings will be joining Wintek and JTouch as suppliers, the publication wrote:

Amazon, considering that the supply of 7-inch touch panels by Wintek and JTouch may not be sufficient for use in its tablet PCs, has decided to add TPK Holding as a third supplier, according to industry sources.

Shipments will begin in September, Wintek “stressed”. Note the may-not-be-sufficient part in the above quote, suggesting a likely increase of the original two million launch units. Amazon allegedly planned on unveiling its inaugural tablet in October, around the same time Apple was rumored to bring iPad 3 to market. At first, the online retailer had experienced difficulties sourcing parts because Apple pretty much locked out other vendors until mid-July they signed up Foxconn, Apple’s long-standing manufacturing partner, to produce the Amazon tablet. Surprisingly, Amazon even went on to become the largest buyer of tablet parts. A market survey has it that…

…a sub-$250 Amazon tablet could strike a chord with the mainstream market. The latest rumor put forth by the Wall Street Journal has iPad 3 in early 2012 due to concerns over volume manufacturing of an alleged 2048-by-1536 pixel resolution display Apple reportedly wants for the device. The iPhone maker released both iPad models in Spring and is likely to stick to that schedule with iPad 3. As a result, Amazon could get its tablet off the ground quickly provided they can put a compelling product on sale in time for the holiday season.