If you’re cognizant of the tech world at all, you know by now that Apple announced the successor to the iPad today, surprising absolutely no one. Another year, another iSomething. What did surprise some people though, was that the event was led by Mr. Steve jobs himself, who has been on a medical leave of absence as of late. He looked quite thin, but that’s par for the course these days. Besides, it’s cold to speculate on a man’s health so we’ll leave it at that. He opened with some stats about iBooks, the App Store, and iPhones. Blah blah blah. As interesting as that might be, the only people that really care are Apple stockholders. You and I, we just care about this newfangled iPad thing. So let’s break down what the Mighty Jobso blessed upon us today.
Most noticeably, the iPad 2 is 33% thinner than the original. It’s down from 13.4 mm of the original to 8.8. That size decrease in turn shaved two-tenths of a pound off the weight of the thing. A lot of people complained about how heavy the first iPad was, so there you go.
Internally, Apple has updated the A4 chip that powers the device to the (wait for it…) A5. It’s dual core and allegedly twice as fast with “up to 9x faster graphics.” The gyroscope from the iPhone 4 is in there too, but nobody gives two shits about that.
Remember how everyone was bitching that the first generation iPad didn’t have any cameras? Well they do now. Front and rear-facing cameras mean you can sarcastically quip in 3 months how over-rated FaceTime is. Like the iPhone 4, the back records 30 fps 720p and the front does VGA. Doesn’t seem like it shoots still pictures, but if you were going to use an iPad for photography in the first place you’re an idiot and I hate you. Although you will be able to use the camera for the new Photo Booth app built into iOS.
People with a bug up their ass about AT&T will be pleased to know a Verizon option is available for the 3G models.
Oh, and it comes in white now. Of course, that’s what they said about the iPhone 4 so I won’t blame you if you’re not exactly holding your breath.
What’s the same?
The price remains consistent for all iPad models (which still come in the 16/32/64 GB variants), starting at $499 for the basic WiFi version up through $829 for the 3G enabled ones.
Battery life is said to be the same 10 hours as before, despite the new form factor. That was a great selling point of the original, so that’s nice.
The screen didn’t get any updates, so it’s the same 9.7 inch, 1024×768 resolution as before. No Retina Display, unfortunately.
You probably want to know when it goes on sale… March 11th in the US, and March 25th in those silly foreign countries.
An HDMI out accessory will be available for $39. Unlike the current VGA adapter, the new dongle will show exactly what’s happening on the iPad screen.
The first-party case has been revamped as the “Smart Cover.” This one is a little hard to explain but makes sense when you see it. It’s basically a magnetic flap broken up into four segments that you can fold into different configurations to better suit different tasks. A nice feature is that it automatically puts the iPad to sleep when you close it and wakes it up when you open it. Available in 10 different colors in both polyurethane and leather.
Well there you go, the iPad 2. Should you buy it? Don’t ask me, it’s your money. I’m not going to try to influence you either way like other some other blogs. If you want one, buy one. If not, don’t. Simple as that.
Personally? I want one. I liked the old iPad, but wanted to see what the next generation would bring. Now that I know, I’m still not 100% satisfied (a external memory slot would be nice) but that’s probably never going to happen and I’m happy enough with what’s currently on the table. If you constantly hold out for the next version you’ll never actually buy anything. Things will always get improve and eventually your hardware will become obsolete. Those are the rules of technology. Sometimes you just have to take the plunge, future be damned. Go ahead and wait for the iPad 3 if you want, but then again by that point iPad 4 is just another year away…
So yeah. New iPad. There you go.