2011: The Year of the iPad 2

Today, Apple announced the iPad 2.

These are the improvements:

  • 33% thinner than iPad
  • 0.2 lbs lighter than iPad
  • includes 2 video cameras for Facetime
  • accelerometer
  • newer, faster dual core processor.
  • Now comes in two color choices: Black or White.
  • They've kept the same WiFi/WiFi+3G pricing model as before.
  • WiFi+3G models are for AT&T or Verizon.
  • Same battery life as previous model, ~10 hours.
  • WiFi+3G model includes GPS.
  • mirrors up to 1080p HDMI video out capability with Apple Digital AV Adapter (sold separately).
Since the announcement, I've have numerous people ask me if I am going to upgrade from my iPad; the answer is pretty much no, unless I need to purchase one for development purposes due to the accelerometer or GPS; I don't see the iPad2 as anything but a "speed bump" in terms of features; while the 1080p output is definitely exciting, I don't have a 1080p device to output on, and my current iPad applications aren't processor bottlenecked.

My currently philosophy is that for Apple's consumer iOS devices, the first revision is usually sufficient; the second generation is usually bug fixes, but it's not until the 3rd or fourth generation that an upgrade becomes necessary if you have a first-gen device. Case in point: the iPhone. I had a first generation iPhone; with the unlimited data plan and EDGE, (and being crippled by AT&T), I didn't see much reason to upgrade to the 2nd generation iPhone 3G; were it not for the misfortune of cracking my iPhone screen just a few weeks before the 3GS announcement, I likely would have not upgraded to a 3GS. The iPhone 4, with the high resolution screen was definitely worth upgrading for, although there are definitely times where I do wonder if a good Android phone on T-Mobile would be better for my lifestyle.

The iPad 2 will be available next week in the U.S. on March 11 at 5pm at the Apple Store; it does not appear as if they will be taking pre-orders until then.

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