iPad 2: faster, thinner, lighter; same battery, display resolution

Apple iPad 2At a live event in San Francisco, Apple today introduced the iPad 2, a thinner, lighter, and more robust successor to the iPad. The iPad 2 improves on many aspects of the original iPad: it's 33 percent thinner, 15 percent lighter, has both front- and rear-facing cameras, and packs a 1GHz A5 dual-core processor that Apple asserts will allow for up to twice the CPU speed and graphics processing that is nine times faster. Other hoped-for features, including a higher-resolution display or access to LTE networks, failed to make the cut, leaving the next iteration room for improvement.

The iPad 2 is 8.8mm thick, and weighs 1.3 pounds, 0.2 less than the first iPad. The back is still made of aluminum, but Apple has given it a less gradual beveled edge. The iPad 2 will be available with a white or black bezel, and Steve Jobs swore a solemn oath at the introduction event that Apple would not repeat the color availability transgressions of the iPhone 4, saying that the white version will ship "from day one."

Apple iPad 2 white

A 1GHz dual-core A5 processor will power the iPad 2's 1024x768 display. Though the screen's resolution remains the same, Steve Jobs said the iPad 2 would be able to support 1080p video out and mirrored video through an HDMI adapter, which Apple has priced at $39. However, the iPad 2's video codec specs top out at 720p, so it's all but certain that the 1080p output is only upscaled 720p.

Apple iPad 2 white or black

The long-awaited front- and rear-facing cameras have been added to the iPad 2, with the rear one able to record 720p video and the front at a VGA resolution. The iPad 2 will be able to get service on either AT&T's HSUPA or Verizon's EVDO network, but customers will have to choose one carrier or the other. Unfortunately, the iPad 2 won't be able to act as a hotspot like the iPhone 4, and no mention was made of support for either carrier's faster LTE networks.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: Apple, iPad, tablets

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