Apple has officially announced the latest iPad, and it isn't the rumored "iPad HD" or even the "iPad 3" - no, Apple's latest is simply called the "new iPad" and it's now available for pre-order over at the Apple Store. Is it worth the upgrade from the iPad 2? Decide for yourself as MEGATechNews brings you everything you need to know about the new iPad.

Display

Not all rumors on the internet are bogus. Word was that the new iPad would sport a Retina Display, which turns out to be true - a Retina Display with a resolution of 2048 x 1536 to be exact. That gives a pixel density of 264ppi, twice that of the iPad 2, and like other Apple Retina products, you can't distinguish the individual pixels when the screen is 10 or so inches from your face. Apple has optimized all of its stock applications for this new resolution and is encouraging third party developers to do the same. Existing applications will look better too.

Power

The device runs on an upgraded A5X dual-core processor equipped with a quad-core graphics processor, which Apple claims is four times faster than Nvidia's Tegra 3 mobile quadcore processor. This comes as a surprise, as Apple is usually a step behind when it comes to processor technology and the A5X seems to be top of the line. It's worth noting that core count alone doesn't mean a whole lot - the Tegra 3 boasts a whopping 12 cores. Does that mean the A5X has 48 cores? I somehow doubt it. But, there's a chance it uses the same GPU as the PlayStation Vita, which makes for an impressive example.

Unfortunately, Apple didn't specify how much RAM the new iPad will ship with, but according to The Verge, sources are saying 1GB, which would be double that of the company's previous tablet.

Like the iPad 2, the battery life is said to clock in at around 10 hours, unless you're on 4G, then shave an hour off. The trade off for all of this power is the new iPad is ever-so-slightly bigger and heavier than the iPad 2. And by "ever-so-slight" I mean it's 9.4mm thick and 1.4 pounds compared to the 8.8mm thick and 1.35 pound iPad 2. If that size difference is too much for you, you might have bigger problems in your life.

Camera

While the front facing camera is still VGA, the rear camera is a massive improvement over the iPad 2 and over pretty much all tablets. It's an iSight camera, like the one found on the iPhone 4S, and it features auto-exposure, auto-focus, and a 5 megapixel backside-illuminated sensor with 1080p stabilized video that captures at 30 frames per second. The downside? You're still going to look like an idiot taking a picture with a tablet.

Networks

Apple is releasing models for AT&T, Verizon, Rogers, Telus, and Bell, and adding support for 4G LTE and 42Mbps HSPA+ mobile networking. The LTE models for Verizon and AT&T will be separate but both tablets will support 3G around the world. Apple has also added hotspot functionality, which works in accordance with your carrier's rules.

Pricing and Release

The new iPads hits store on March 16th in the US, Canada, France, Germany, Switzerland, Japan, and the UK. On March 23rd, it'll hit 100 more countries. The 16GB Wi-Fi model will be $499 and the 16GB 4G model $629, with the 32GB and 64GB sizes costing an extra $100 and $200.

Is It Worth It?


I'm not an Apple guy, nor am I crazy about the trend of releasing updated products every year. And that's why it feels so out of character to say that I think the new iPad is a worthy purchase, even for those with an iPad 2. Not only is it a powerful tablet PC but it's an undeniably impressive upgrade from its predecessor. I've always had fun bashing Apple for their tendency to always use slightly outdated technology, but you'll find no such criticisms here. Apple seems to have made a quality, cutting-edge product. And while I would still choose an Android tablet, simply because it's my preference over iOS, if you're an Apple fan, be proud.

 

 

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