So, Apple's iPad event is over, so it's time to digest though the information and see what twe know and what we don't know.
Here's the state of play:
It's called the iPad 2
Powered by a dual-core A5 processor running at 1GHz, but no word on how much RAM this part is fitted with
CPU 2x faster, GPU 9x faster
Front VGA resolution camera and read-facing 720p camera, but no word on resolution
iPad 2 is thinner, even thinner than the iPhone 4 (8.8MM vs. 9.3mm) - current iPad is 13.4mm thick
Lighter - 1.3 pounds compared to 1.5 pounds
Two colors, white and black, and both will be instantly available
10-hour battery life
Prices and storage remains the same - $499 buys youa 16GB model with WiFi
3G version supports both AT&T and Verizon
Also announced was new GarageBand and iMovie for iPad
New accessory include a $39 HDMI out cable that aloows 1080p output
A new “smart cover” that uses magnets to attach to the iPad 2 - case also doubles as a stand - $39 for polyurathane version, $69 for leather
Availability - March 11 in the US and two weeks later in another 26 countries
So, what do i think? Well, it's evolutionary rather than revolutionary for sure. The hardware upgrades are more modest than many were predicting (no Thunderbolt port, no super high resolution screen, no storage bump) and the new features bought in by iOS 4.3, while being rather interesting, are far from ground-breaking. There was also no price drop.
That said, this upgrade is more than enough to worry those planning on bringing out tablets this year. iPad 2 should present plenty of challenge for Morotola and RIM and the like as they gear up to release their tablets. Or, to put it another way, the Xoom and PlayBook could well be toast in the face of the iPad 2.