Cheaper iPad 2 is more

Apple finally took the wraps off of its next iPad and it wasn’t the iPad 3, iPad HD, or even iPad 2S. Instead, Apple took the naming conventions from its own Mac-line of products and named it simply “the new iPad.” Think about it: when a new Mac is introduced, it’s not MacBook Pro 3, for example, it’s just the new MacBook Pro.

Published: Sat 17 Mar 2012, 9:38 PM

Last updated: Fri 3 Apr 2015, 1:57 AM

Besides the new way of naming the iPad, which is just another sign that Apple views the iPad as the future, taking over from Macs eventually, there were no real surprises with the new iPad.

It may look just like iPad 2, only slightly thicker, but the display has four times the number of pixels compared to the first two iPads: 2048x1536 instead of 1024x768. That means crisper text and graphics, amazing games, and a lot more “space” to play with for those who create user interfaces for apps.

Something else new is the 4G or LTE mobile data capability. This means you can surf with up to 72 Mbps, an amazing speed for a mobile device. Unfortunately, the LTE will not work outside of North America, Apple has said, but perhaps that’s coming in a future revision. 3G should work though.

The camera is also improved in the new iPad, with 5-megapixel resolution capable of 1080p video recording. Of course this is all driven by a faster 5X processor and double the RAM compared to iPad 2. All in all, incredible display, faster processor, and better camera on the new iPad.

But I would argue that what is even more significant than the new iPad is the lower price on iPad 2. It’s now $399 in the US and sells for Dh1,599 in the online UAE Apple Store.

At that price it’s a smashing tablet, easily beating all the competition. Since competitors had a hard time matching the iPad’s price already before, starting at $499, Samsung, Motorola, and the others will find it even tougher now.

Let’s not include Amazon Kindle Fire and Nook in the same group, as they are sold at a loss and don’t match the universal functionality of the iPad and other full-featured tablets.

It may be that as we move forward some apps made for the new iPad will not look quite as good on the iPad 2, but it should be a long time before the iPad 2 is outdated. The latest iOS 5.1 runs just fine on the original iPad, which is now about two years old.

So I say, if you want to save some money, and who doesn’t want to, get the iPad 2. For schools and companies, the iPad 2 is a bargain, which will keep selling in large volumes for a long time to come, I think.

And as excited as I am about the new iPad, I may instead buy an iPad 2, as I’m still using an original iPad. That is at least until I’ve actually tried the new iPad, then I may change my mind.

Magnus Nystedt @mnystedt

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