Sadly, the most obvious and necessary addition (to me at least) to the iPad should have been the Siri voice control system. Turns out, Siri is technically still in Beta and despite the enormous amount of attention Siri has received, testing continues apace as does refining the concept to the point that Apple is satisfied with the results (note to Apple: the world is satisfied!). So, we won't be seeing Siri in the iPad anytime soon.
That's a shame because seeing things in the new iPad is the best improvement to date. The laser-sharp Retina display found in the iPhone line has made it's way into the iPad family and now photos, video and letters will be so sharp that 1080 HD video will be possible.
|The Retina display shows images sharper than the eye can perceive.|
Other improvements include a faster processor to support that Retina display, a 5 megapixel camera that has more than five times the resolution of the iPad2, 4G wireless support that Apple claims brings in ten times the data of a 3G connection. Otherwise, the new iPad looks the same, has the same size and comes in only black and white (last week, I predicted various colors would be available, including purple, but Apple didn't see things my way).
So what's the reaction from the tech world? Seems like it's mostly a non committal "meh".
No real surprises here. Prices remain unchanged for the various iterations of the line (storage sizes, 4G or wi-fi, etc.) and Apple will keep the iPad2 in stock for the reduced price of $399 vs. $499 for the new iPad.
Techradar.com has a hands-on review of the new iPad and includes a video showcasing all of the new features you could use if you have $500 laying around doing nothing. Be aware, though, this site is British and includes British currency as well as American in its review. All other features remain identical.
Take a look and you might decide to keep your iPad2 until Apple decides Siri is mature enough to include as a standard feature. Also, I would suggest to Apple a new naming strategy- something other than "the new iPad".
My name prediction for next year? iPad4. After all, how can this model be the new iPad when the newest iPad debuts in a year?
If you want one, pre-order the new iPad from Apple at their website. Deliveries will start March 16th.