Why 13-inch iPad delay may be good news for Apple

The reported delay in production of Apple's 12.9-inch iPad could actually be good news for the tech giant, analysts say.

Apple's biggest iPad was expected to be released in the first quarter of this year, but manufacturers have been instructed to delay production until the latter half the year, according to The Wall Street Journal, citing anonymous sources.

So what's the good news? It all comes down to the iPhone.

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"In a way I would argue this is almost a better thing because [the] iPhone still has a lot of momentum, a lot of steam ahead of it," RBC Capital Markets Research Analyst Amit Daryanani told CNBC. "As that starts to ease up a little bit towards the end of this year … it would be optimal for the iPad to come out at the point."

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Daryanani added: "At least for the next couple of quarters, probably for the next few years, as goes [the] iPhone so goes Apple's stock, so I don't think this really hurts Apple that much as a stock."

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The production delay is likely due to panel supply problems, Daryanavni said. "It seems like it's extremely difficult to manufacture panels in the 12.9 to 13-inch scale," he said.

Apple declined to comment on the delay.

"As a reminder, this product was supposed to be out back in November actually when the iPads were refreshed," Daryanani said.

Apple was reportedly testing larger screens in 2013.

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Trip Chowdhry, managing director of equity research at Global Equities Research, told CNBC he had always expected the larger iPad to be announced this September and be available in October. He called production delays a "nonevent."

"Apple currently is singularly focused on launching the new category [of the] Apple Watch," Chowdhry said. "So, for the next few quarters, Apple will be preoccupied in ramping up the production of Apple Watch, solidifying the developer ecosystem and getting more and more apps on the app store."

Microsoft sells a 12-inch Surface Pro 3. Apple's biggest iPad has a 9.7 inch display.