There’s no question that the news of the hour, in fact the news of the week, was the new iPad that Apple introduced to the world on March 6. Like any other Apple products, the rumors have been going wild for a long time now, and while everyone was expecting a new iPad to be introduced at some point this quarter, details were not known for sure, and no one knew exactly what the announcement would look like. Now that the release came and went, let’s see what the new iPad looks like, and what it means for the world of 4G.
First, the new iPad doesn’t have a number. It’s not the iPad 3, it’s just the iPad. In fact, even though the company said they will be keeping the previous iPad 2 around and offer it at a lower price, they still don’t want to use a number. Instead, you have the iPad available at various prices, with different features, just like computers have always been. We’ll no longer have numbers, simply improved features of a single product.
So, what exactly are these new features? There’s no question that the big one is the new display, which Apple deems a “retina display” because of the high resolution and pixel density. The iPhone 4 made a huge splash when it came out with this type of display, but many weren’t sure if a 10″ tablet would benefit as much from this type of screen. But now that reviewers have had a chance to see the new display, there’s no doubt that everything looks so much crisper and clearer on this type of screen. This is reason enough for the iPad to raise above other tablets out there.
However, one other new feature that was introduced and perhaps didn’t get as much coverage was the introduction of an LTE chip. This means that if you buy an iPad with cell coverage, you now get access to full 4G download speeds. Indeed, the new iPad is available with plans from Verizon and AT&T, just like the previous one was, but instead of 3G speeds, you can get up to 10x faster transfers thanks to LTE. In fact, it’s one of very few tablets out there that supports LTE, which again places Apple’s product ahead of the competition.
And from the Apple store being down for most of the day when the pre-orders went live, there’s no question that this is going to be a popular product, so we can expect a huge increase in LTE customers soon. It’s interesting that the iPad gets 4G before the iPhone does, but this is probably due to the fact that Apple simply announces its new iPad earlier in the year than it does the iPhone, so there’s very little doubt that when autumn comes, we’ll see the next iPhone with LTE support as well.
The price on the new iPad is unchanged, and for new customers, it makes a lot of sense to go for this tablet. If you have that kind of money to spend on a tablet, the iPad seems to be the way to go, although in the lower end market, some Android choices like the Kindle Fire are still very competitive.