What's New in the iPad2

BlogHer Original Post

Apple, with characteristic hoopla including a talk by Steve Jobs, held a press event March 2 to announce an upgrade to one of its hugely popular products. That product is the iPad 2.

Jobs said, "Today we're here to talk about Apple's third post-PC blockbuster product. That's how we think about these things. We started with the iPod, then we added the iPhone, and then the iPad. Every one has been a blockbuster." He declared 2011 the year of the iPad 2.

ipad 2
© Qi Heng/Xinhua/ZUMAPRESS.com


The event started with a video talking numbers about Apple's great success.

"Gist of the video -- the iPad is magical. Sales were through the roof. Stuff is amazing." -@endgadget #ipad2Wed Mar 02 18:14:00 via web

What's new in two? Here's a rundown.

New Features of the iPad 2

  • a new chip, the A5, with a dual core processor and up to 2X faster CPU
  • front and rear cameras
  • gyroscope
  • 1/3 thinner, just 8.8 mm thick (even thinner than iPhone)
  • lighter at 1.3 pounds
  • comes in white (plus the original black) for both AT&T and Verizon
  • A smart cover: this is not a case but a cover complete with magnets and the ability to fold into a stand. Jobs said, "Magnets grasp and auto-align the case. You can put it on in a second. The micro-fiber screen cleans the screen every time you close it, and it's incredibly minimal."
  • New cases that covers the screen!!!!! #ipad2Wed Mar 02 18:30:50 via TweetDeck

  • iOS running on the iPad 2, iOS 4.3. That means improved Safari, faster JavaScript, iTunes home sharing, improved Airplay for sending video to TV and sharing photos, switch preference (you'll be able to choose whether you want the hardware switch to act as a mute or as a portrait/landscape orientation lock), personal wi-fi hotspot, Photo Booth, Facetime (you can facetime between iPad and iPhone, iPad an Mac, iPhone and Mac). iOS 4.3 will be free on March 11th for iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch.
  • iTunes home sharing too from iPad. - this is actually a useful feature #apple #ipad2Wed Mar 02 18:33:54 via Twitter for iPad

My favorite? The two cameras are great, and the cover is awesome. I know it isn't really a feature of the iPad, but it's awesome.

A new accessory touted was the HDMI Mirrored Video Output so that the iPad will output to TV. New iLife apps selling for just $4.99 on March 11 include iMovie with sharing options for YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo and more and GarageBand. GarageBand has "smart" instruments that anyone can play.

Imovie for the Ipad 2! Can we say genius? Ok I've seen enough where do I pre-order? #iPad2Wed Mar 02 18:44:26 via web

Garageband for #iPad2 looks awesome. #AppleWed Mar 02 18:53:30 via web

The Apple iPad Store is open and taking orders, which begin shipping on March 11 in the U.S. and March 25 in other places.

What stays the same?

The price and the screen resolution do not change. Some were hoping for a greater screen resolution.

So, is an iPad 2 in your future?

With Motorola Xoom and Samsung Galaxy trying to get in on some of the millions of tablets sold, Apple needed to cement its leadership position in the tablet market with solid and appealing "2-ness." Those Motorola Xoom ads leave me drooling -– but it's the hunky guy holding the tablet more than the product that wakes me up during Xoom commericials. Apple has the hunky product. Can Apple compete with Mr. Incredible Hunk for my tablet dollars? The answer is "so yes."

-

Virginia DeBolt writes about web design education and web technology at Web Teacher and creates a daily writing prompt at First 50 Words.

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