I got my new iPad on Friday, and have had a couple of days to play around with it. I have also compared it to my iPad 2, and I have to say that my initial thoughts about it match up with my experience.
This is a great device, so I'll cut to the chase: if you are looking for your first tablet, or wondering whether you should upgrade from an iPad 1, the answer is an unqualified yes. If you have an iPad 2, then it really depends on how you answer these questions:
- Does the resolution on your iPad 2 bother you?
- Do you want a faster cellular connection?
- Do you want a better camera?
If you answer Yes to one or more of these questions, I'd suggest you upgrade. If you answered No to one or more, you're probably okay keeping the iPad 2 for a while longer.
The first thing I noticed about the new iPad was its weight - it's only 1.8 ounces heavier than the iPad 2, but it is quite noticeable to me, especially when I put the SmartCover and back cover on it. To be fair, my Switcheasy CoverBuddy doesn't quite fit - it's made for an iPad 2, which is a little thinner than the new iPad - I'll get rid of it when something that fits is available. That said, it's still lighter than the original iPad, so I'm not complaining.
At first, I couldn't tell the difference between the iPad 2 display and the new iPad's retina display - I thought, "maybe they sent me an iPad 2 by accident." After a while, though, the differences began to become clearer - literally - the display is significantly better on the new iPad, whether you're reading a book, watching a movie, or reading email. Here's a comparison of the Gmail app icon - it's from a great review of the new iPad at The Verge:
For most of you, the real difference here will come in the clarity of the text you read with the iPad. It's clear, crisp, and really enjoyable.
Next - the camera. I've already said that I just don't get why anyone would want to hold up something this big to take a picture. But if you happen to be someone who does, you'll want to take a look at the new iPad's camera. I took two pictures of my new book iPad Apps in One Hour for Lawyers.
Not even close.
I did not purchase a 4G model - I don't need one because I have a 4G Mi-Fi hotspot - but reviews I have read say that the 4G speeds are "faster than wi-fi fast." That assumes, of course, you are in an area where 4G networks are available.
Now, it's not all roses and honey with my new iPad. There are a couple of things I wish were different, and they all deal with the battery. In order to keep the iPad's impressive 10-hour battery life, they had to increase the size of the battery, and they did - by about 70%. For me, there have been two effects of this massive battery:
- The device gets unusually warm after using it for a few hours. Not "it's going to explode!" warm, but warm enough to know something is working pretty hard under the hood.
- Bigger battery = longer charge time. Be prepared to leave it plugged in overnight to get a good charge.
The Huffington Post offers a great roundup of 9 reviews on the iPad, if you'd like to read more about what tech experts are saying (spoiler alert: they all love it, too).
I agree with the experts that the new iPad is the best tablet currently on the market - so I'll say again, if you're thinking about buying a tablet, you owe it to yourself to take a look at the new iPad.
So what's your take? Do you already have your iPad? Does my review (or the others above) push you over the edge to buy one? Is there no way you'll ever one? Leave your comments below and let's discuss!