mlearn project

Charles Sturt University's Mobile Learning Project

The New iPad

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So the new iPad has arrived. Its been met with mixed reactions in the media and a lot of “meh” from the tech blogs (like this one). Rather than be revolutionary the new iPad (oh yeah, that’s its name – the New iPad) is evolutionary. But the kind of evolution we are talking about is quite dramatic, in the sense that we are skipping stages. We are talking something similar to television going from black and white to colour, that sort of evolutionary step. Two years ago Apple created the tablet market, this time they are changing the we see it.

The big feature of the new iPad is the arrival of what Apple calls a “Retina Display” – where the pixels have been made smaller and many many more pixels are able to fit into a smaller space so that they are almost indistinguishable. This creates a crispness and clarity that rivals the printed page.

In real world terms the new iPad has more pixels in its 10.1″ screen than in your 50″ plasma. Its almost twice as high definition as blu-ray and HD TV. The only way to truly see how crisp and clear the new iPad to see it with your own eyes, because nothing out there can actually replicate it.

The new iPad represents a leap in display technology that Apple have been working on for close to a decade and it puts Apple way ahead of the competition. Other manufacturers have been obsessing over the chips inside, how fast and powerful they can make them, but most people don’t care about that. They want functionality, not a spec sheet. Apple have gone and developed something that makes a difference every day and every time you use it.

The Retina Display and the recent iBooks announcement puts Apple in the drivers seat when it comes to education. One of the key complaints by many people (quite often not iPad users) is that they don’t like reading of a screen. But now when the screen is as crisp and as clear as a printed page does that excuse still wear? Apple have just made reading on a tablet a much better experience, actually no – they have made reading on an iPad much better.

Looking for a recommendation on buying the new iPad? Well … I think it depends.

  • If you’re looking to upgrade from an iPad 1 – then yes it makes sense. The performance improvements alone will justify the spend.
  • If you’re a new tablet user – then you won’t get a choice. The next model will replace the current iPad 2 line.
  • If you currently have an iPad 2… thats a harder choice. When it’s released, I think you will know just by looking and playing with it if you want to upgrade. So head to you local store and see it for yourself.

What Apple have signalled is that the new iPad is the future and each new device is an increment and an evolution.They’ve even dumped the numbering scheme to prove this. They might not blow the tech writers away every time they come out, but what other product gets so much hype for a new model?  You don’t see a MacBook 11 or Sony TV 5 and you certainly don’t see this much coverage for any other piece of technology!

The iPad is consistently resetting the benchmark for the tablet, and the bar just got a little higher.

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Author: Tim Klapdor

Passionate about good design, motivated by the power of media and enchanted by the opportunities of technology.

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