As we all knew it was coming, Apple today officially unveiled the iPad. The iPad is obviously situated as something in between a smartphone and a laptop. Steve Jobs says it is designed to handle certain critical tasks very well. Things like browsing the web, email, photos, videos, music, games and eBooks. In short, the iPad is a great big iPhone with a few more bells and whistles.
The iPad interface is just like the iPhone with a capactive touch screen input. There’s even a slide to unlock feature to get into your iPad. The iPad even has a larger version of the iPhone’s QWERTY keyboard that comes on screen when you need to type something.
Web browsing works with the same touch swiping, zooming and scrolling that iPhone users are familiar with. Synching the iPad works just like the iPhone, over the standard iPod connector.
The iPad is available in 3 different WiFi models of 16GB, 32GB and 64GB storage capacities at $499, $599 and $699, respectively. Stepping up to WiFi + 3G models will set you back $629, $729 and $829, respective to the same storage sizes. Wi-Fi-only models ship in 60 days, while the 3G models will ship in 90 days.
- 9.7- inch display
- Full capacitive multitouch
- 1GHz Apple A4 Chip
- 16GB-64GB flash storage
- Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
- WiFi 802.11n
- 10 hours battery life (over a month in standby)
- Speaker & Mic built-in
- Accelerometer & Compass
- 30-pin iPod connector
- .5 inches thin
- 1.5 pounds
The iPad is available with 3G connectivity at a price of $29.99 per month for unlimited data via AT&T. You can also get 250MB of data transfers for $14.99 per month. If you are on the AT&T plan, you get free use of AT&T WiFi hotspots. The 3G connection is activated on the iPad and requires no contract, which means you can cancel at any time. All iPad 3G models are unlocked and they use the new GSM and microSIMs.
Key Features and Apps
- Runs all iPhone apps out of the box in iPhone resolution
- Can double iPhone app pixels for full screen view
- iPhone SDK now support iPad apps
- iTunes Store built-in
- NY Times iPad Custom App
- Brushes (with pop-over menus)
- Need for Speed: Shift (from EA)
- MLB.com (with live video)
iBooks is an Apple-designed ebook reader app specifically for the iPad. iBooks features a bookshelf interface for sorting through your books, and Apple has created the iBook store for downloading new titles directly onto your iPad and into your bookshelf.
The iPad can run a revamped version of iWork designed to integrate properly with the iPad user interface. It has Keynote, Pages and Numbers – all with an interface unique to the iPad. There are a number of ways to work with your data via keyboard inputs, dropdown menus and pop-over boxes. You can connect a projector and display your Keynote presentation directly from the iPad.
Each app within the iWork family is available separately for the iPad at a price of $9.99 per app.
- The Dock – A basic charging station and stand for the iPad.
- The Keyboard Dock – Same as the dock, but with an integrated, external keyboard.
- The Case – A carrying case, much like the one for the Kindle, that doubles as a stand.
Additional product details at Apple.com/iPad.