Summary: Verdict: If you already own the original iPad there’s little reason to splurge on the latest. While the cameras bring new functionality, the results as far as the rear camera is concerned, are basic. If you own another first generation tablet however and you’re unsatisfied with it, Apple’s latest is worth a look.
Pros: More horsepower under the hood, slightly lighter, looks and feels great, battery life is still brilliant.
Summary: Successor to the Throne. About one year ago, Apple laid the foundation for the iPad, a groundbreaking new tablet series. Apples iPad 2 comes with new hardware: dual-core CPUs and front and rear cameras. These upgrades are just in time, because the iPads first worthy opponent is about to be released: the Android 3.0 tablet.
Pros: High quality case, Good performance, Quiet and low heat emissions, Good battery life, Extensive package (Appstore, Bookstore, iTunes...), the improvement of the iPad.
Cons: Still no cursor keys on the virtual keyboard, Limited connectivity, Camera module has bad quality, The Apple System (both soft- and hardware) are completely closed off
Conclusion: In some ways, this new edition of the iPad is a subtle refinement, in other ways a drastic expansion of its functionality and its very intent, allowing us to create and communicate with technology which simply was not available in the initial effort. And so with a healthy dash of innovations big and small, without any compromise, the iPad 2 is a sequel worth waiting in line for.
Pros: Sleeker than ever, Enhanced feature set including two (!) new cameras, Blazing-fast processor
Cons: Still no Flash video support, Charging still slow, still can't be performed via connection to computer
Conclusion: Continuing with the specs, the biggest boost that the iPad 2 receives is with its new dual core A5 CPU and the PowerVR SGX543MP2 GPU. The CPU is dual core compared to the original iPad’s single core, however, it adjusts its frequencies dynamically- running at a slightly lower 900MHz clock speed compared to the original iPad’s 1GHz. What is super impressive is the PowerVR GPU that Apple has used on the iPad 2.
Excerpt: The Good Much faster in some areas. Thinner and lighter. Huge, intuitive app library. Smart Covers are slick. iMovie and GarageBand are killer apps. Dual cameras add functionality. Still excellent battery life. Tough-to-beat price. The Bad Not night-and-day better for some iPad owners. Cameras are sub-par by Apple standards. Android sometimes more powerful and open. Smart Cover doesn't guard the back. Still the same 1024x768 display.
Pros: Much faster in some areas., Thinner and lighter., Huge, intuitive app library., Smart Covers are slick., iMovie and GarageBand are killer apps., Dual cameras add functionality., Still excellent battery life., Tough-to-beat price.
Cons: Not night-and-day better for some iPad owners., Cameras are sub-par by Apple standards., Android sometimes more powerful and open., Smart Cover doesn't guard the back., Still the same 1024x768 display.
Conclusion: With properly calibrated expectations--think minor refresh, rather than next generation--the iPad 2 continues Apple’s reign as the king of tablets. If you haven’t bought one yet, the iPad 2 is a stellar device that still feels like a little slice of science fiction come true. But if you already own an iPad 1, there’s no real need to upgrade unless you’re a hardcore gamer who wants premium performance.
Pros: New A5 chip and RAM significantly improve overall performance, and gaming in particular. Dual cameras work fine for video calls. Thinner, lighter unibody looks slick and makes the iPad more comfortable to use. Video mirroring adds “teaching and presentation tool” to the iPad’s list of many useful functions. Magnet-based Smart Cover is an ingenious, valuable accessory. Same pricing as first iPad.
Cons: No transformative new features. Display is unchanged, so it still isn’t usable in bright sunlight and attracts lots of smudgy fingerprints. Cameras yield poor, low-res photos. Using cameras is often difficult and requires awkward grip. No support for 4G cellular data. Still no expansion ports.
Summary: Apple didn't need to do a lot to stay in the tablet lead, but it has certainly done enough to create more distance between itself and the rest of the field. The thinner, lighter iPad 2 raises the bar for design. And while the new dual-core processor didn't blow us away, it provides a noticeable performance boost while making resource-hungry apps such as iMovie feel buttery smooth.
Pros: Thinner and lighter design, Speedy dual-core processor, Makes FaceTime calls, Innovative Smart Covers, More than 11 hours of battery life
Cons: Camera quality could be better, No 4G connectivity, Doesn't support personal hotspot