postheadericon ECS: The New Ipad: Revolution, Or Just An Update?


On the same day as the "New iPad" was announced from Cupertino by Tim Cook, I was in Suwal Music & Video looking for a 3-D DVD and noticed that the owner and his pals were playing "Talking Ben The Dog" on an iPad 1. Having just watched Cook rollout what we are all calling the iPad 3 and Apple is calling the "New iPad", I had to ask the gents if they were planning to upgrade. 

"Probably not", seemed to be the consensus there, and in general, around the world folks are saying the same thing. Current iPad users are not publically expressing a strong desire to run out and get the latest, yet Apple's pre-orders are sold out, and Apple expects to sell over 1 million New iPads on day 1.

This kind of makes sense if one has listened to CEO Tim Cook's keynote address during the launch, where he declared the era of the PC is finally over. According to Apple's top brass, we have all entered the post-PC era  - where smaller, more powerful devices are going to replace the desktop and even the bulky laptop. So all those outside of the early adopters of the iPad 1 & 2, are expected to purchase a New iPad as their primary computer, and have that connected to their phones, televisions and older types of computers.

It's a bold statement on Apple's part, and whether you agree or not, the numbers that show that Mr. Cook may be right. Apple sold more i-devices in 2011 (156 million) than it sold Apple computers in the past 28 years (122 million). The shooting star is the iPad, which is outpacing sales of any device currently on the market. 

Companies struggling to sell "tablets" are confounded that the brand iPad has become synonymous with tablet, just as Kleenex is used to describe any soft facial tissue and the brand name Hoover is used to describe any UK vacuum cleaner. It's imprints like this that lead to world domination in the marketplace, and there is no doubt that in just a few years, Apple has done that with the iPad. 

IDC, the largest provider of market intelligence and research, predicts that the iPad will dominate the market as it did in 2010, far out and beyond 2012. 

So is there a New iPad in your future? Have those of you who have been waiting as I have, finally make the jump to this 3rd generation device? 

My wife, a true Nepali girl, is dying to get her hands on one. She currently uses her laptop for Facebook, photos, and the occasional email. Most all of my Nepali friends are doing the same. This post-PC era device is perfect for all of the above. 

But in my mind, there are lots of techie reasons to make the leap: the new Retina Display has a resolution of 2048 x 1536, higher than your HD TV, and with that you will never be able to see a pixel again from a distance of 40 cm. This will fundamentally change the way you look at the iPad, and makes it the best e-book reader on the market. 

The rear-facing camera has also been updated with the same optics found in the iPhone 4s, giving you 5 megapixels and HD videos. In conjunction with the release of the New iPad, iMovie is now an app that runs there, so cutting and rendering movies is even easier here, than on a full-blown Mac computer. 

The processor was updated to handle all of the above, and the New iPad sports the same chip as the new iPhone 4s: the Apple-made A5X, which for you techies, means 1 GHz processor and 1 GB or RAM to run any of the over 120,000 optimized-for-iPad apps in the Apple App Store. 

Battery life is the same as the iPad 2(10 hours) and considering the improvements above and the fact that weight and size are just about the same, that alone was a remarkable achievement. And for non-techies, the seamless integration of iCloud with your phone and computer means that whatever you do on your iPad, you will see the result immediately everywhere else you are computing.

So while owners of older iPads may balk at buying this one, new Nepali users will be delighted and may just ditch their laptops for this revolution-building (if not revolutionary) device. Prices start in the USA at Nrs. 49,000, but expect to pay 55+ by the time they reach Nepal in the next few months.

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Jiggy Gaton
lives in Kathmandu and is an aging technologist - has been since the days of Woodstock - so in the words of Roland The Gunslinger "he is from a world now gone by." However, Jigs is extremely up-to-date on all things tech and is also available for hire.
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