The new iPad
So you wait, and you wait and finally, two iPads come along at once.
Ok, not really.
Apple announced an updated iPad at its event earlier, but also said it would continue to sell the iPad 2 – at a reduced price. So the iPad range has been expanded to two instead of a single model.
On the surface, the third generation iPad looks the same as the iPad 2. If there are any differences, they’re almost imperceptible. And the device didn’t even get a new name, with Apple execs referring to it simply as “the new iPad” throughout the entire event.
But there are a few things worth noting about the new iPad, most of them under the hood.
The display: You wouldn’t think that you’d notice much of a difference in the display; after all, the iPad’s display was already pretty impressive. But the Retina display is noticeably crisper on the models that Apple supplied for hands on demonstrations. Text was crisp and clear. Photo quality is brilliant. Add to that the improved colour saturation and you have a high quality, vibrant display that photos look great on. Yes, it’s not quite as many pixels as the iPhone’s retina display, but it’s unlikely that you’ll notice the difference. And its 3.1 million pixels is better resolution than your average HD TV.
The camera: Speaking of images, the iPad’s rear camera has been bumped up to an iSight camera, and it uses advanced optics Apple developed for the iPhone 4S. It comes with all sorts of technology to improve image and video. Video is now 1080p high definition quality, instead of 720, and it also has image stabilisers that make it noticeably less “bumpy” when you’re recording. Though quite how many people use the iPad as a camera is another thing. And lately I have noticed quite a few people taking footage with theiriPads, so it’s something they would appreciate.
The chip: It may not be quite what had been rumoured – the A6 quad core chip is simply the A5x – but it bumps up the specs a little and gives it a bit more oomph on the graphics department. This will come out in improved games graphics, as demonstrated at the event, and while the idea of the iPad replacing any games console is probably still a little hard to believe, it certainly won’t hurt the iPad’s reputation as a mobile gaming device.
The battery: yes, the battery life is the same at 10 hours, but considering how much of a drain on power the improved bits – the retina screen, the quad core graphics – getting 10 hours of battery life out of it is certainly an improvement of sorts.
The wireless connections: 4G LTE connectivity may not be much use to Irish users – we don’t have the networks – but Apple gave an insight into what we can expect from it when it finally arrives here. In the meantime, new iPad owners in the US and other countries around the world will be able to take advantage of faster download speeds for everything from internet browsing to video streaming.While we just watch jealously.
The iPad is launched on March 16th in countries such as the US and UK, but the good news is that Ireland gets it in the second wave – a whole week later. So on March 23rd, you could have the new iPad in your hands.