There have been many rumours regarding the iPad 3, from its unveiling and launch dates to the specs and design. Since the iPad remains atop of the tablet market it wasn’t hard to believe that a few of these rumours started even as early as when the iPad 2 was launched in 2011. But today, ladies and gents (and all the die-hards), the wait is finally over. Apple has unveiled, at long last, the much awaited iPad 3 in at a media event at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, California.
It’s become common ground for OEMs to introduce updates for a particular series of smartphones and tablets, most notably the Galaxy series and iPhone and iPad series. Before we discuss the specs of the new iPad, I’ll take some time to briefly go through the list of additions and features.
Firstly, Apple will be introducing a wide range of new apps to go along with the new iPad. The first of these apps is iPhoto (available for $4.99 on iTunes), which gives the user a host of features that include image effects, multi-touch editing, bezel gestures, direct beaming (whatever that is), adjust white balance, exposure and saturation, add geotags, captions and notes, and finally the Journal feature that allows you to choose certain images for quick viewing. In addition to the new iPhoto, Apple has also provided updates for Garage Band, iWork and iMovie. For those who don’t already own these apps, a price tag of $4.99 is attached as before. Along with the newly updated apps, Apple has also announced an update to iOS 5.1, which should be available right now.
Ok, enough of the iSoftware! As with the iPhone 4S, the iPad 3 comes pre-installed with Siri. The problem with the Siri for iPad, however, is that it’s not fully voice assisted, only a simple voice dictation, available in English (US, British and Australian), French, German and Japanese.
The topic of 3G and 4G capabilities has been at the forefront of the long list of rumours that were flying around the Web this past year. The good news for those iPad fans is that have included a high speed LTE version of the device for Verizon, Rogers, Bell, Telus and AT&T operators. At this point, we can only assume that this LTE version of the tablet will also make its way across international waters. This, however, is a superfluous feature here in good South Africa, as there hasn’t been any indications that LTE will be available to consumers in the near future, with trials still underway for all operators. On the plus side, the new iPad will be equipped with 3G that should work across the globe, as have included the most bands ever into one device. This seems like a cost cutting venture, to avoid having to develop different versions for different regions, but is a neat feature nonetheless.
Ok, settle down, here are the specs as promised:
- Display – 9.7 inch LED-backlit IPS LCD
- Resolution – 2048×1536 thanks to its Retina Display
- CPU – Dual Core A5X
- Graphics – Undisclosed (Strange!)
- Memory – Undisclosed (What’s going on here?)
- Storage – 16GB/32GB/64GB
- Front Camera – VGA (640×480)
- Rear Camera – 5MP
- Data Connection – “World Ready” 3G, HSPA+, DC-HSPA, LTE
- Bluetooth – 4.0
- Weight – 635g (WiFi), 662 (3G, 4G)
- Thickness – 9.4mm
- Battery – 10 hours
Although there are other specs included, they don’t really play a large role in your choice, let alone as a point of discussion. As you can tell from the initial list of specs, the iPad 3 is much better than its predecessor, making it worth the hype. Again there are a few missing features I’m sure you would have loved to see on the new tablet, an SD-Card slot being the most obvious.
For those of you who are still interested, the iPad 2 costs have dropped significantly during the past 24 hours, which makes it the perfect time to purchase. If you have been saving during the course of the last few months in anticipation of the new iPad, here’s the breakdown of the costs:
- $499 – 16GB WiFi
- $599 – 32Gb WiFi
- $699 – 64GB WiFi
- $629 – 16GB WiFi + 4G
- $729 – 32GB WiFi + 4G
- $829 – 64GB WiFi + 4G
I’ve been using the term iPad 3 throughout this update, when in fact there is no official name as such, as the device simply known as (3rd Generation) iPad. That’s neither here or there at this point in time. So, if you’re wondering when you can actually get your hands on one, the official date has been set as the 16th March. And since it should be able to work in South Africa, you shouldn’t have an issue if you do purchase from the States. I can picture the queues that will inevitably start forming outside of iStores during the next week. Have you got your camping gear ready? Happy hunting.