Apple iPad 2 Features & Specs

Posted by Eric Torres

Mar 7, 2011 10:22:00 AM

It’s been long awaited, and it’s now here, or at least it will be March 11. Apple has announced the hotly anticipated second version of its popular iPad, and it has addressed some of the complaints and criticisms of the first generation.

Below is a video by Jason Snell of Macworld and here is his full breakdown of the iPad 2.

The device now boasts not one but two cameras, one for its FaceTime video chat feature and the other for HD video recording. It sports a thinner and lighter design for easier holding during extended periods and offers the same 10-hour battery life as previous models. In addition, it sports a dual core A5 chip.

Does this address all of the complaints of the previous model? No, but the iPad 2 offers plenty to attract new admirers.

Thinner Design
The new iPad is 33% thinner and nearly 15% lighter so it’s more comfortable to hold for extended periods for reading, watching movies, checking e-mail and surfing the Web.

Dual-core A5 Chip
Two cores in the A5 chip makes for a faster experience no matter what you are doing, whether it is playing games, watching movies or making FaceTime video chats. The greater speed also allows for faster app launching and smoother multitasking.

Enhanced Graphics
Apple claims the new iPad has up to nine times the graphics performance for smoother and more realistic gameplay, not to mention scrolling through your photo albums, viewing animations or editing videos in iMovie.

Improved Battery Life
Because of the energy efficiency of the A5 chip and the IOS, the new iPad offers the same 10-hour battery life as the previous version, even with its much slimmer design.

Not One But Two Cameras
Some have questioned whether a webcam would work well on a tablet device, because its lack of a built-in stand would likely result in an annoyingly shaky video, and the awkward size of the iPad would make it difficult to use as a camera for still photos or videos. However, enough people clamored for such a camera that the option on the new iPad is sure to be popular. The camera that faces the screen allows for video chats, while the rear-facing camera captures HD video.

iPad with new cover resized 600

New iPad “Smart Cover”
In addition to the new features, Apple has also introduced a new cover for the iPad 2. The new cover is articulated and hinged to the top edge of the iPad, so that it can be folded up and either used as a stand to hold the iPad in near vertical position or as a typing base to hold the iPad at a slight angle for typing on the virtual keyboard.

The cover is magnetic in design, so it stays put against the glass front of the iPad when closed. The iPad detects when the cover is closed and goes to sleep automatically, and it reawakens when the cover is opened. As if that’s not enough, the cover comes in 10 bright colors. The cover is designed to protect the screen of the iPad without adding bulk to its design, but some users will be disappointed that it doesn’t protect all sides of the device.

LED-Backlit Display
Of course, the iPad sports the same large 9.7 inch high-resolution display as on the first generation (but not the Retina Display like is found on the iPhone 4 — that would probably be prohibitively expensive for a screen the size of the iPad’s). Like previous models, the display features a technology called IPS (in-plane switching) for a wide viewing angle.

Multi-Touch Technology
As with the previous model, the multi-touch display makes surfing the Web, flicking through photos and turning the pages of e-books seem natural. The display detects when your fingers touch the screen using electrical fields, and transforms your taps, pinches and swipes into the appropriate responses.

iOS 4
The iOS 4 operating system for iPad allows for multitasking as well as running the 65,000 apps that have already been developed for the iPad. As on other models of the iPad, it’s responsive and helps set the iPad apart from devices offered by competing companies.

WI-FI and 3G
As with the previous model, the iPad features 802.11n wireless technology, and automatically finds and lets you join WI-FI networks. It is also available with 3G connectivity on either AT&T or Verizon Wireless networks for those places where WI-FI is not available (the 3G data plan requires a separate purchase).

Gyroscope, Accelerometer, and Compass
The iPad has always sported a built-in accelerometer that senses when you rotate the device to portrait or landscape orientation so that the display can adjust automatically, but now the accelerometer works in conjunction with a three-axis gyroscope and compass for even better responsiveness, especially when playing games.

AirPlay and AirPrint
Apple’s AirPlay technology now allows for wireless streaming of your music, photos and videos to your AirPlay-enabled HDTV and speakers on a WI-FI network.
Built-in AirPrint allows you to get a hard copy of your documents directly from your printer over WI-FI.

Video Mirroring
The new video mirroring allows you to show your presentations to a larger audience with the Apple Digital AV Adapter or the Apple VGA Adapter and an HDTV or projector.

Although the iPad to doesn’t include all the features that many people were hoping and wishing for, such as USB ports and Flash compatible, it has enough to offer to keep a new flock of iPad users very happy indeed.

Topics: Tablet, iPad 2, New Products, Apple

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