Saturday, December 1, 2012

Unboxing of the new iPad (4th Gen. Wifi + Cellular)

Welcome indeed!
Okay, so I have been looking forward to reviewing new toys I get, and since I was sitting at my computer while opening my new, 4th generation iPad with wifi and cellular connectivity, I decided to take some pictures of the unboxing process, so I can discuss the iPad, how it has changed in the new generation and what to expect from the new version. I should point out, I owned the 3rd generation iPad from launch day, and it has been my favourite thing since that at day.

The baby is going to get all the attention.
Most people are extremely confused by the new iPad, because the iPad 2 is still on sale in Apple stores. I will admit that if you don't follow the news, it is pretty difficult to understand what is the newest product. Even apple store employees have trouble explaining this. If the progression of iPad naming was linear and consistent, you would have four iPads all named by their generation of release (1st, 2nd, 3rd and now 4th generation iPads all in order). The problem arose when after coming out with the iPad, they called the 2nd iPad the "iPad 2". When they introduced the 3rd generation iPad, they went back to the standard naming convention, and dropped the numeral in the title. So for the last 2 years, you could buy the iPad 2 (the old iPad) or the iPad (the new iPad, which could have been called the iPad 3 and now iPad 4, but is just called iPad). The iPad 2 saves you $100, but is now 2 generations and almost 2 years old. It has a very low resolution screen and runs on an outdated processor. It is well worth it to spend the extra $100 to upgrade.

First, opening the box, you see that everything is perfectly laid out to protect the iPad and its accessories, but also to make it easy and convenient to remove them. Apple always goes to great lengths to make every step of the opening process easy and simple.

After removing the iPad from its protective plastic sheath, starting up the iPad gives you a glimpse of its beautiful, high resolution screen. The process of setting up the iPad requires you to get it onto the Internet to activate it, but aside from that and signing into your iCloud account, the process only takes a few minutes. Soon you will be having fun playing with your iPad!

The 4th generation iPad, on the outside, has very little visible difference from its predecessor. There are, however, several important differences that will have an impact on your everyday use. The only visible, and most important difference, is the lightning connector on the bottom. This is probably the main reason this iPad was released, because it brings all of the newest generation of apple products up to the same connector. This connector is 80% smaller than the old 30-pin connector, is reversible, and does seem to allow for some faster charging than the old connector. Additionally, on the outside, the iPad AC adapter was improved, going from a 10W charger to a 12W one, an increase of 20%, which should allow for faster changing as well.

Another difference that will actually be visible is that the front facing camera was been updated to a much higher resolution, so that you will actually be able to take front facing photos and partake in video chats without having an incredibly blurry face. This is noticeable right away and will allow for a huge improvement in your experience.

The processor in the new iPad is also twice as fast as the previous generation, which definitely makes day to day tasks and loading programs much faster. Additionally, on the inside, the cellular and wifi radios are improved in order to allow the iPad to connect to LTE networks in more places around the world, while wifi performance is doubled compared to the old generation.

Start using iPad: don't mind if I do!
Other than those differences, this iPad is pretty similar to the old one, and you definitely shouldn't worry about it if you have the 3rd generation iPad, you are not missing much. I expect the next generation iPad will have a form more like the iPad mini, and should be the upgrade you hold out for. Whether or not that happens on the old release schedule (around March) or the new schedule (almost a year from now in October), any retina iPad will do just fine until the next upgrade cycle.

Thanks for reading!