Even though the main focus of today’s Apple event was the iPad mini, Apple also gave the standard 9.7-inch iPad a little spec boost. The iPad, or “iPad with Retina display”, now features a Lightning connector for charging and syncing as well an upgraded A6X processor, dual-band Wi-Fi and an HD FaceTime camera. Apple claims that the A6X processor will allow the iPad to run twice as fast as the third generation iPad, which ran on an A5X chip.
The rest of the iPad has remained the same as it still features an iPad 2-like design, a 5-megapixel iSight camera and a high-resolution Retina display. Apple has said that this new iPad will also carry the same price as the third-generation iPad.
These improvements help integrate the iPad with the rest of Apple’s current device lineup because of the Lightning port as well as bringing it up to speed with the iPhone 5 as it features an A6 processor.
Apple has completely discontinued the iPad 3, and early adopters are pretty pissed about the decision. Honestly, this is something early adopters are going to have to get used to in the future. The small specification update from the iPad 3 to the iPad 4 could easily become the norm as Apple tries to keep pace with the competition in the market. There are parallels between Apple’s operating system upgrade schedule and the new iPad schedule. A shorter, iterative release schedule keeps the device moving forward at a quicker pace.
The thing is most people don’t upgrade their iOS or OS X devices with every single new update. Early adopters are a small minority. The rule of thumb is simple: update your devices when you need a new device. Stop worrying about what’s coming down the pipeline.
For more info on the updated iPad, check out Apple’s iPad webpage.