The recently seeded iOS 5.1 beta has started making rounds of the tech blogs with the discovery of Sprint’s iPad 2 in the code of iOS 5.1. The iOS 5.1 SDK has revealed a new iPad product id openly in the iOS core, as reported by the eagle eye folks of 9to5mac. The new iPad 2 references in iOS 5.1 are with the name of “iPad2,4″, which suggest a minor update to Apple’s iPad series, in short means entery of the new carrier in iPad 2 business.

The current iPad 2 carrier references in iOS are distinguished with their unique references and the type of cellular antenna, as follows:

iPad2,1 – Wi-Fi iPad
iPad2,2 – AT&T iPad 2
iPad2,3 – Verizon iPad 2
It appears that Apple has finally made a decision to give its iPad 2 to Sprint and start a complete cat and mouse game between all the major U.S carriers. The new reference in iOS 5.1 naturally represents “iPad2,4″, a minor update that seems to be an addition of Sprint in iPad 2 carriers.

In the past, it was already confirmed by several sources that Apple has been planning to give a iPad 2 to Sprint. Apple was previously highly expected for the Sprint’s iPad 2 launches before the holidays, but seems to be a bit late in finalizing their work. At the reference found stage, we can’t surely say that Apple will launch iPad 2 on Sprint soon. We are not sure maybe they will wait until the release of iPad 3.