Product Notes: Apple iPad (third-generation)
March 7, 2012
On March 7, 2012 Apple announced the third-generation iPad (advertised as "the new iPad"), which will begin shipping in mid March. This significant update occurs a little over a year after the release of the iPad 2 in March 2011.
Notable in what is not included in the third-generation iPad are GOBI multi-vendor WWAN capability or standard USB connectivity.
Design and Changes
The most significant change is a far higher resolution "Retina" display, a display four times the resolution of the original iPad and iPad 2. This display is a fully capacitive multitouch 9.7-inch (2048x1536) in-plane switching (IPS) LCD at 264 ppi - a resolution which nears the pixel density of the iPhone 4/4S.
The availability of 4G LTE is another significant change. It's available in separate models for both AT&T and Verizon Wireless. All 4G iPads will also be able to communicate globally with 3G GSM networks.
The third-generation iPad weighs 1.4 pounds for the WiFi-only model and 1.5 pounds with 4G connectivity included. The new case is approximately 0.4 inches thick with other dimensions being 9.5 and 7.3 inches, so the overall volume is approximately 109% that of the iPad 2 and 72% of the original iPad.
Like the iPad 2, the third-generation iPad input/output includes a dock connector, 3.5-mm stereo headphone jack, built-in speaker, microphone, and a micro-SIM card tray in the 4G models. There's also an updated front and higher resolution rear cameras resembling those of the iPhone 4S with the ability to record video in 1080p.
The third-generation iPad will ship with iOS 5.1 and almost all current iPad applications should be compatible. ISC expects the third-generation iPad to be compatible with University-centric services such as AirPennNet, Exchange, and Zimbra, but this functionality will have to be confirmed.
A few considerations when ordering a third-generation iPad:
Third-generation iPad pricing remains the same as last year's iPad 2 pricing model. WiFi-only versions are $499 for the 16 GB version, $599 for the 32 GB, and $699 for the 64 GB. Adding 4G to any of the three storage configurations is an additional $130. Apple will continue to sell the iPad 2, with a $100 price reduction.
The University's Computer Connection will have several third-generation iPad configurations for order today.
ISC sees the third-generation iPad as a solid update to the extremely successful iPad 2. Currently, ISC does not see the third-generation iPad as a primary computing device for most users. Rather, ISC believes that the third-generation iPad is a complementary device to a more capable desktop or notebook.
The third-generation iPad enters a different market than the original iPad or the iPad 2. Apple is now far from alone in the tablet market, with capable products from Motorola and Samsung shipping.
ISC will follow up with a full review of the third-generation iPad as soon as testing has been completed.
Third-generation iPad graphic courtesy of Apple
--Jordan McClead and John Mulhern III, ISC Technology Support Services (March 7, 2012)
Information Systems and Computing
University of Pennsylvania
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