Apple Announces iPad 2

As expected, Apple announced the next evolution of the iPad family, the iPad 2 on Wednesday.

While this announcement was pretty much on queue with the rumours and what the analysts were expecting, what was surprising were two factors;

  • Apple will ship the product in the United States on March 11th and Internationally two weeks later on March 25th
  • Steve Jobs was present to headline the announcements.

The iPad 2 will come in with exactly the same configurations and price points as its’ predecessor, the iPad.  The differences though will be the incorporation of both rear-facing and front-facing cameras.  which will support a number of application enhancements included such as FaceTime and PhotoBooth.  Apple also announced the availability of iMovie and GarageBand for the iPad.  Both programs have been optimized for the iPad and bring some amazing capabilities to a very mobile, portable device.  The biggest surprise is that both applications will retail for $4.99.

The iPad 2 is also significantly thinner and lighter than the original, boasting 8.8mm thickness – less than the iPhone 4 and now weighing in at only 1.2lbs vs. 1.6lbs for the previous 3G/WiFi model.  It also features a much faster, dual-core processor – the Apple A5, which provides 2X improvements in CPU performance and 9X improvements in graphics speed.  This will make gamers and game developers very happy.  Lastly, the iPad 2 also incorporates GyroScope sensors so that the device can detect itself within a 3-dimensional plane.

Steve Jobs called 2011 the year of the iPad 2.  While this upgrade represents an ‘evolutionary’ achievement, in my opinion competitors are scrambling and will be significantly challenged to remain competitive.

About Grant Fengstad

I’m a technology professional in the travel and transportation sector and have been very involved with the Internet for over 20 years.