Apple’s annual Spring event kicked off
on Wednesday morning in downtown San Francisco and alongside the announcement
of a brand new Apple TV and lots of great software, featured the unveiling of
the latest iteration of the world’s most popular tablet. Taking to the stage
following some warm up music, current Apple CEO Tim Cook spoke at length about
the iPad, relating how the tablet and its sister iOS devices had helped move
millions of users into a bold new era of ‘Post-PC’ computing.
Cook then further revealed that Apple
sold an amazing 172 million ‘Post-PC’ (or lOS) devices last year, which amounts
to 76% of Apple’s revenue for the fourth quarter of 2011. Clearly, the iPad and
OS makes up a large part of Apple’s future plans. And so, without further ado,
let’s take a look at Apple’s new device.
Referred to by Apple simply as ‘The
New ipad’, or ‘Third Generation iPad’, Apple’s latest device comes with an
amazingly high definition screen as has been widely speculated. However,
besides the Retina Display, Apple also had a few unexpected surprises too:
The new iPad comes sporting a gorgeous
Retina Display which has a resolution of 2048 x 1536 at 264 dpi - that’s an
incredible 3.1 million pixels and thus gives the new iPad the most stunning display
yet seen on any mobile device to date, far eclipsing any current rival.
The iPad’s internals have also been
significantly overhauled, with a dualcore Apple A5X CPU which comes with an
incredibly powerful integrated quad-core graphics chip too, no doubt necessary
to help push those three million pixels. The RAM amount is yet to be officially
announced but is speculated at being 1GB.
The iPad’s rear camera has been
upgraded to a 5MP ‘iSight’ camera, capable of 1080p video recording and photos
which look very impressive. Indeed, the iPad’s iSight camera is reportedly
comparable with the iPhone 4S camera and should be more than capable of
producing excellent images.
The new iPad will be available with 4G
LTE wireless capability (while retaining 3G connectivity), offering a potential
download speed of 73Mbps on networks which support the new technology. Verizon,
Rogers, Bell, Telus and AT&T have been named as the LTE carriers which
Apple are working with in the US, while other worldwide partners shall also be
named in due course.
The new iPad stops short of full Sin
capability presumably because of Sin’s reliance on a constant data connection,
making it impractical for use on WiFi-only iPad models. However, the new iPad
does come with Dictation, accessible via a small microphone icon placed within
the touch screen keyboard for easy access.
Though there were rumours of an
impending design overhaul, the overall form of the new iPad remains largely
unchanged from its predecessor, with the exception of an increased rear camera
size (now branded iSight) and a minor overall increase in size and weight, owing
to the larger battery which has been squeezed into the iPad’s casing. Compared
with the iPad 2, the new iPad gains weight from 1.33 pounds to 1.4 pounds (WiFi
model) and increases in thickness by just 0.03 of an inch.
Despite the vastly increased processing
and graphics power needed to make use of a Retina Display, the latest iPad
manages to stay at the much lauded 10 hour battery life mark (one hour less for
LTE equipped devices), just like its predecessors. The new iPad is available in
black or white, with unchanged storage options of 16GB, 32GB and 64GB.
The new ipad will be available at the
same price as the iPad 2 was originally sold for in the US - $499 for the
baseline WiFi-only 16GB model, with the iPad 2 continuing to be sold at a
reduced price of $399.
Full US pricing is as follows:
Pre-orders are now available for
release on March 16th in selected countries, with the new iPad also being
rolled out to other countries on 23rd March. Those countries in full are:
Announced alongside the new iPad,
there have been updates to each iWork application in order to make full use of
the new screen capabilities, in addition to significant updates to iMovie and
GarageBand, with the latter gaining a note editor, which will increase the apps
It was the final piece of the iLife
puzzle which garnered the most attention however, as a an all new iPhoto comes
redesigned for the iPad and packed with all new gestures, new effects and
multi-touch editing, in addition to the ability to beam photos directly between
Though we have only recently moved
into the third month of 2012, the year has already brought big surprises
related to Apple, with upcoming versions of both the ipad and Mac OS X
unveiled. While Apple is currently at the top of their game, the new iPad
clearly shows the company are taking their competition from Android based
devices seriously and have thus brought out one of their strongest upgrades to
Apple’s latest tablet looks set to
eclipse its predecessors and all the competition completely, with the killer
feature of that unsurpassed screen resolution no doubt proving too enticing for
many would-be owners to resist. Rest assured that all further iPad news will be
covered in full in Apple Magazine.