Print 100 comment(s) - last by Moishe.. on Mar 19 at 3:31 PM

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 The Verge 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 AllThingsD 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 SlashGear 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 MacWorld:
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).

[Source: MacWorld]
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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RE: Competitors
By testerguy on 3/15/2012 10:36:19 AM , Rating: 2
No your point in the argument is someone has challenged your amazing new iDevice. You make blanket statements such as the one I just quoted, without backing it up with any proof. Which apps do people simply want, that aren't available?

I have given numerous examples in various posts. I'll give a single one because I only need one to prove my point. Sky Sports, who have the exclusive rights to the most watched football league in any sport in the world - the English Premier League. The app for that is only available on iPad. As is the F1 coverage. And again, I don't own an 'amazing new iDevice' - you sound pretty bitter about them though. That you challenge my 'blanket statement' that is pretty much common knowledge certainly evidences this.

And widgets aren't useful? That's probably because you've never had them in the iWorld. Weather, News, Email, SMS, Music, Movie Times, Sports Scores, System Tools, Toggles, are all vastly more efficiently accessed via a widget than opening an app for each one. How easy is it to toggle WiFi on the iPad? What about looking up weather? Email? etc. Gliding from screen to screen on the Android homescreen can answer all these questions without ever opening an app.

Honestly? Weather, SMS, Email, Music, System Tools are all widgets you can have on your home page on iOS, they show when you have new emails, so you just tap and then there you have it. If that single click is too challenging for you, and you're desperate to have it all immediately, go with Android. But most people aren't so mentally incapable that this is a requirement for them. Wifi toggle? I've never ever turned Wifi off on any apple device. Ever. For me, (and most people), there's never a need to turn it off. That you have such a focus on it simply exposes how awful Android battery life is. Weather on home screen, email one tap. Rocket science? lol. 'Widgets' has to be the single weakest argument of fandroids, and if you desperately wanted that on an iPad or iPhone you can, by jailbreaking. No problem at all.

One final argument before I finish. Storage space. iPads don't have anything other than what's built in. While testing the prime, I had 32GB on board, 32GB in a microSD, 32GB on a full SD, and finally 32GB on a usb stick. I didn't get a chance to test the usb port for portable hard drives, so I can't comment as to whether they work or not, but all together, that's 128GB of space to play with. You may argue that the iPad doesn't need all that, but have you heard of the new Retina display? How small do you think building textures for that resolution will be? On Android a decent game can take 500MB, easy.

You can use SD cards, USB sticks and hard drives with iPad too. So you're whole rant is irrelevant. You don't, typically, because those kinds of storage are always slower and damage performance, and because, as you say, the majority of people don't need that much storage. Your example of a game taking 500mb is pretty irrelevant since you would need someone who had loads of top top quality games which are all much bigger textually for it even to be relevant. Such a power user (and it's a tiny minority) would probably have the 32GB model. At least when they do game, it's actually far higher quality and far faster. Indeed, any true gamer who matched your example would never be satisfied with the up to 4x slower Tegra 3.

We get it, you love Apple. While their new iPad is a great device for sure, it's not vastly steps ahead of the competition. I'd reluctantly recommend it to people who want a media consumption appliance, where they are guided on how they can use it and don't have many options to veer from the path. While the GPU on the iPad may indeed be the fastest available, it has to be just to keep up with the experience of other tablets that have already been on the market for months. It's still a step behind in the actual number crunching department, plain and simple.

I don't love Apple at all. As I told you, I don't own an iPad. I just use logic. If Android tablets were better than iPads, I would say so. They just aren't. Not even close. You're accusing me of being biased but honestly, your whole comment is dripping of bias against Apple - probably because you own Android devices.

You say it's not 'vastly ahead' of the competition? Really? Even the iPad 2 performance hasn't been matched to date. The iPad 4 is up to 4x faster graphically than the FASTEST Android tablet, has a higher resolution than any, has the best battery life, and best reliability ratings. Apple also supports the software for far longer than Android and has thousands upon thousands of apps, the vast majority of which are higher quality and not just blown up smartphone apps.

Your claims that the GPU 'has to be fast just to keep up' are beyond ridiculous. All the Android tablets will try to catch up to the resolution AND the graphics performance of the new iPad. They are massively, massively, behind on both. Generations behind. Even behind the iPad 2. In the 'number crunching department' the iPad GPU wins, hands down, in almost every important metric. Crucially, the performance is 4x faster. Your attempt to describe the 4x more powerful GPU as inferior because the screen is also massively superior, is quite frankly an irrational joke which makes a mockery of your rant.

RE: Competitors
By Cheesew1z69 on 3/15/12, Rating: 0
"If a man really wants to make a million dollars, the best way would be to start his own religion." -- Scientology founder L. Ron. Hubbard

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