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Notes from the iPad 2 Announcement and What It Means For You

By (view all posts by GuyCopes)
at 11:57AM Wednesday March 2, 2011
under Product Review

Today, Apple unveiled details about its brand new iPad 2. As the internet literally explodes with news of Apple's latest tablet, we take a look--in addition to breaking down all of the iPad 2 details--at what this means for the iPad 1 and whether or not all of the fan wishes were granted. 
What it Means For the Original iPad

This now creates a win-win scenario for consumers. With the current "older version" of the iPad now the old dog on the market, prices for "new" copies of that model should drop. According to the Washington Post, original iPads will now retail for $399 instead of $499.

What Was Anticipated

MSNBC's Technolog had a very solid feature predicting what Apple's latest version the iPad would feature with a wishlist that included dual cameras, that the iPad 2 should be thinner and lighter, and sport a dual core processor. How accurate were they? Let's take a look.

What Has Been Revealed

The iPad 2 has a sleeker design than its predecessor and is launching with a new, faster chip dubbed the A5. The A5 sports dual core processors, an up to 2X faster CPU, and graphic capabilities up to 9X faster. From Steve Jobs himself, "We go all out on the graphics performance. Up to nine times faster. Same low power as A4. This will be the first dual core tablet to ship in volume."

Other features of the bigger, better iPad include rear and front-facing cameras for video. Yay, finally! Photo Booth will be included as well as FaceTime, a new software for video conferencing. Also, the same built-in gyroscope found in the iPod Touch and iPhone will be included in the slimmer iPad 2. The new iPad 2 is 33% thinner than the first iPad, coming in at 8.8mm, and is thinner than the iPhone 4. It also weighs .2 pounds less than the first iPad coming in at 1.3 pounds as opposed to 1.5 pounds.

It will be available in two colors, white and black, and will be available to work on both the Verizon and AT&T networks. The new iPad will also share the same ten-hour battery life as the original iPad, with over a month's time of standby.

Next up at the live Apple event was something most important to Savings.com fans, price. Jobs stated that the pricing for the iPad 2 would be the same as the prices for the first Apple tablet.
  • 16GB version with WiFi will cost $499; the version with WiFi + 3G will cost $629.
  • 32GB version with WiFi will cost $599; the version with WiFi + 3G will cost $729.
  • 64GB version with WiFi will cost $699; the version with WiFi + 3G will cost $829.
Apple is also promising over 65,000 apps and a March 11, 2011 shipping date. That's right, this month! 26 countries should have the new iPad 2 by March 25th.

Here are some other features that we can all get our hands on very soon:

  • HDMI mirrored video out. Providing up to 1080p output, allowing you to rotate and charge your iPad 2 while in use. The cable will cost $39.

  • Smart Covers - Covers for the iPad 2 that won't obscure the iPad design. They sort of peel away from the front while still connected to the rear of the unit and can act as a stand for the iPad 2. They will be available in either polyurethane ($39) or leather ($69) and the tablet will wake when the case is opened and go into sleep mode when it is closed.From the pictures at Apple's live event they will be available in 10 colors.

  • iOS 4.3 will also debut with the iPad 2 and include iTunes Home Sharing via WiFi. There will also be improvements to AirPlay. Tapping the AirPlay icon will automatically cause the iPad 2 to search for your Apple TV. It will also enable a personal hotspot for iPhone 4. Finally a preference for iPad switch (mute or lock) has been included.

  •  iMovie for iPad - Precision editing, multitrack audio recording, new themes, video share in HD. Cost: $4.99

  • GarageBand for iPad. $4.99. A music app for serious musicians and amateur artists alike.
So what do you guys think? Overly excited or still not ready to proclaim Apple the new gods of the digital age? Let's discuss in the comments. Personally, Yasar and I are pretty psyched for this.

Follow the latest news on all things iPad Classic and iPad 2 via Twitter @SavingsGCapes and @YasarSavings.