Apple rolled out a subtle CPU update to its iPad 2 lineup last month, opting for a new 32 nm A5 processor. The update brings an additional hour to an hour and a half of battery life in gaming benchmark tests, and a whopping additional two and a half hours in video playback tests.
The iPad 2 holds a 19% advantage over the 3rd generation iPad (once again for obvious reasons), however the iPad 2,4 absolutely dominates with an 18% increase in battery life. At 15.7 hours this is an insane amount of battery life from a single charge. Granted end users will see lower numbers if you watch at higher brightness settings (200 nits on our test panel was around 40% brightness), but the advantage from the new iPad should still remain just as significant.
The obvious reasons pointed out by Anandtech is the amazing Retina display in the new iPad. That thing is a resource hog.
Here’s the bummer though: you’ll have no idea at checkout which version of the device you’ve managed to purchase. The only way to tell the difference between the two models is to fire up an app like Geekbench and check the version of your iPad. The good news, though, is that version 2,4 of the iPad will eventually replace the 2,1 version if all goes well with the new chipset. The longer you wait, the higher the likelihood that you’ll have the newer model.