The Reviews are in for Apple's "New iPad"
March 14, 2012 9:26 PM
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Apple has another solid hit with the "New iPad"
Apple's "New iPad" was
announced last week to much fanfare in San Francisco
. As is usually the case with new iPad or iPhone releases,
launch day pre-orders sold out quickly
and those who were late to get their orders in could end up waiting for a few weeks to get their hands on one.
As a refresher, an Apple A5X processor that has seen its onboard RAM double from 512MB to 1GB powers the new iPad. The A5X is also blessed with a quad-core GPU which boosts gaming performance and helps feed the new iPad's biggest new feature: a 2048 x 1536 resolution Retina display. Other niceties include a 5MP rear-facing camera, and optional LTE connectivity.
On the negative side, the weight and thickness of the iPad has grown to accommodate a new 42.5 watt-hour battery (the iPad 2 had a 25 watt-hour battery). In addition, Apple is once again being stingy with storage capacities on the iPad. Even though app sizes are
doubling or even tripling in some cases
due to Retina support, Apple is holding firm with 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB capacities -- the same lineup as when the first generation iPad launched in 2010.
Tonight, however, we're getting our first look at what the new iPad can do courtesy of a flood of reviews. Here are some select excerpts from the reviews that are currently available:
Joshua Topolsky of
gives his thoughts on the iPad 3's gorgeous new Retina display:
Yes, this display is outrageous. It's stunning. It's incredible. I'm not being hyperbolic or exaggerative when I say it is easily the most beautiful computer display I have ever looked at…
You literally can't see pixels on the iPad's display when you hold it at a regular distance, and even up close you have to really inspect the thing to see dots. For rendered text or high resolution images, it just looks otherworldly; like a glowing piece of paper.
The difference between the iPad 2's display and the new iPad's Retina display [Source: The Verge]
Walt Mossberg of
fame touched on the battery life of the new iPad. While it's not quite the power-sipper as its predecessor, it still posts some impressive numbers.
Apple claims up to 10 hours of battery life between charges, and up to nine hours if you are relying strictly on cellular connectivity. In my standard battery test, where I play videos back to back with both cellular and Wi-Fi on, and the screen at 75% brightness, the new iPad logged 9 hours and 58 minutes, compared with 10 hours and 9 minutes for the iPad 2. Other tablets died hours sooner in the same test. In more normal use, the new iPad lasted more than a full day, though not as long as the iPad 2 did.
The original iPad didn't have any cameras at all, while the iPad 2 came with a standard front-facing camera for FaceTime and an incredibly subpar rear-facing camera for pictures and 720p video. The new iPad can now features a 5MP camera and bumps video recording up to 1080p. Vincent Nguyen of
gives his thoughts on the new optics:
Apple says it has borrowed the camera technology and optics from the iPhone 4S for the new iPad, though still the 5-megapixel images the tablet is capable of do lag behind the 8-megapixel examples from the smartphone. There’s more visible noise and chromatic aberrations at full zoom, though the quality is far, far better than any stills the iPad 2 can achieve. You also get face recognition for up to ten people per frame, automatically adjusting focus and exposure, but the camera app UI itself is no more complex than before.
While the actual CPU hasn't improved much over the iPad 2, the integrated GPU has definitely been turbocharged, as witnessed by Jason Snell of
That power comes from the X factor in the A5X processor—a new quad-core graphics engine. And sure enough, the third-generation iPad blows away every other iOS device in terms of graphics performance. In our tests using the GLBench 3D graphics testing app, the third-generation iPad could draw a complex 3D scene at the full frame rate of its display, 60 frames per second, without breaking a sweat. And in GLBench offscreen tests, which aren’t constrained by the display’s frame rate, the third-generation iPad had a frame rate 1.6 times that of the iPad 2 (and 13 times that of the original iPad).
Overall, the new iPad seems to be another solid entry into the tablet field for Apple. It holds the line on CPU performance and battery life (at the expense of device thickness and weight) while offering an impressive Retina display, optional LTE, and a tremendous boost in graphics performance. Pricing remains the same as previous iPad model ($499/$599/$699 for Wi-Fi; add $130 for LTE models), but Apple still doesn't have the guts to give users an increase in storage capacities.
To sum things up, Joshua Topolsky offers these words of advice:
Let's be clear: the new iPad is in a class by itself, just as its predecessor was. As the latest product in a lineage of devices that defined this category, the iPad continues to stand head and shoulders above the competition. With the addition of the Retina display, LTE, more memory, and a more powerful CPU, Apple has absolutely held onto the iPad's market position as the dominant player and product to beat.
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3/15/2012 10:36:00 AM
Its plain, simple and obvious. Most apple users have no technical knowledge what so ever. They buy the new, flashing and pretty product from who THEY think is the best. It comes down to hardware and the simple fact that these tablets cant do anything to graphically intense no matter how strong they are. Games have good frame rates on both of them and that's that. It is irrelevant to compare them. Neither is better than the other. If I had to choose it would be android for flexibility. Apple keeps you stuck in their world without modification. Android is the opposite.
3/15/2012 10:47:39 AM
Exactly. The apple products simply WORK. No hours fraking with the options. No time trying to find compatible memory cards. No time sorting through half ass written apps. No time trying to figure out which version of Android will actual run on your hardware. Flexibility is what the PC market is. The PC market is everyone's workplace. When people are away from work, they do not want to WORK on their phone. The phone should just be simple.
The problem with your argument. Is despite it being easy to use, iPhone's and iPad's are in the range of the best performing devices available. In one aspect or another, they have some of the best/latest hardware available.
Last but not lease. iTunes. Wait, what? A central piece of software that handles all my old music from the time I first got an iPod, to handling all my Apps on all my mobile devices, to handling my videos, my updates...
Just simple, obvious, idiots ALL those people. Hard to make your case when new, flashy, and pretty also make use of the latest hardware, most complete and reliable software, and most streamlined interface with the rest of a person's digital world.
3/15/2012 11:34:21 AM
you talk about performance when you cant even see the differences between an android tab and an apple tab. Irrelevant. There is no difference
"There is a single light of science, and to brighten it anywhere is to brighten it everywhere." -- Isaac Asimov
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