Leaving Them Dangling
Apple's name game: Cook reveals all about new HD iPad 3
At a press conference in San Francisco on Wednesday, after nearly 20 minutes of bragging about Apple stores, enhancements to iTunes, the availability of iOS 5.1 and a refresh of the Apple TV, Apple CEO Tim Cook turned to the real issue of the day: The much-anticipated announcement of the iPad's next generation.
Apple sold more than 15.5 million of the little machines in the last quarter alone — unsurprising for how ubiquitous the notebook has become. And they're not slowing down with the improvements.
"It is amazing. We've taken it to a whole new level, and we are redefining the category that Apple created with the original iPad," Cook said.
Ready to hear about the improvements, techies?
- The Retina Display will be ramped up to 2048 x 1536 pixels. That's twice the iPad 2, and more than your HDTV. According to Philip Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, "Until you see it you can't understand how amazing it is. . . Everything you do is going to look stunning."
- An A5X chip for quicker speeds and quad-core graphics —"the best mobile display that has ever shipped."
- A 5-megapixel iSight camera, complete with auto-exposure, auto-focus, white balance and face detection.
- HD video recording in 1080 pixel resolution, with video stabilization and temporal noise reduction.
- Voice dictation, with a microphone key (like the iPhone 4S) to tap and speak into — in English, French, German and Japanese.
- 4G LTE, with fast 3G HSPA+ and DC-HSDPA, 3G world ready and software to make it a personal hotspot, available on AT&T and Verizon.
- Equivalent battery life of the iPad 2 (10 hours, or 9 hours on 4G).
- Updated iMovie and Garage Band, introduction of iPhoto for iPad, improved gaming and more.
At a thin 9.4mm and a light 1.5 pounds, the new iPad (whether it will be deemed the iPad 3 or the iPad HD is still unanswered) is ever-so-slightly thicker and heavier than the iPad 2. It will again be available in black and white, in 16GB, 32GB or 64GB, starting at $499 on March 16.
Eager to get your hands on one? Pre-orders began Wednesday.
Update: Mashable reports that the new iPad will just be called "the iPad" — more in line with Apple's system of naming its computers rather than its iPhone.