iPad 3 prices and features matrix revealed


iPad 3 price matrix will be the same as iPad 2, above

One of the remaining mysteries ahead of the iPad 3 launch next week are the prices and configurations.  If you don’t like surprises we have good news.

There was a rumor last week that gained traction which indicated that the US prices would increase by $70-$80.  That doesn’t appear to be the case.

We’ve gotten word that iPad pricing is going to be the same across the board as the current iPad 2 models which should be no big surprise given Apple’s history – they rarely raise prices.  Even better, some countries with currencies doing better than the US dollar should expect to see marginal drops in prices.

While we’re squashing, the configurations appear to be the same as current 16/32/64GB.  One of the strange succession of posts from Digitimes this week said that Apple would move to 8GB/16GB/32GB.  That appears even less likely than before, if that is even possible.

Update: This has no bearing on LTE one way or another

As always, thanks to Mr. X!

iPad Model numbers are as follows: Read more

iPad 3 round-up: Retina Simulator out, Retina iPads running iOS 6.0 in server logs, 20MB download limit concerns


An example iPad 3 app screenshot simulated using the Retina Simulator tool. Click for larger.

The forthcoming March 7 announcement of a third-generation iPad will (again) force third-party developers to update user interfaces with high-resolution graphic assets that will take advantage of the tablet’s substantial pixel density increase. Some developers took to Twitter to complain that Apple currently does not provide tools for them to test how apps will look on the iPad 3. Enter Ryan Petrich, who is an iOS developer and mobile engineer at Medialets.

With a bit of good ole’ under-the-hood pluming, Petrich put together a nifty hack that lets developers test existing iPad apps on iPad 3’s Retina Display. It reportedly maxes out at a whopping 2048-by-1536 pixel resolution. The tool is called “Retina Simulator,” and it is available free of charge here.

Developer Steve Troughton-Smith tapped Petrich’s tool to create gorgeous high-resolution screenies depicting how incredibly crisp and detailed Retina-optimized apps will look on the upcoming iPad 3. Just click on any image in this article for full-resolution awesomeness. Marvel. Repeat.

Meanwhile, a credible publication analyzed server logs and found traces of iOS 6.0 and iPads rocking Retina Display originating from Apple’s Cupertino campus.

Continue reading for more information on this and concerns related to over-the-air distribution of Retina-optimized iPad 3 apps.

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Look! These fake iPads don’t have home buttons

Aatma Studio just posted this iPad 3 concept. However, by the looks of it, we might have to wait for the iPad 5 for most of these features. The same studio has done other Apple product concepts in the past like this iPhone 5 concept. This, of course, follows Apple’s announcement earlier today confirming the next-generation iPad will unveil March 7 in San Francisco. We will bring you live coverage of the event next week as it goes down.

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Digital caliper comparison suggests 0.81mm thicker iPad 3


(note the misplaced decimal above)

Apple.pro recently leaked spy shots of the purported iPad 3 front glass and a next-generation iPod nano with a camera on the back. Today, the Chinese blog is at it again, pointing to an image depicting the thickness of the third-generation iPad’s shell compared to the current-generation iPad 2. Resorting to a good ol’ digital caliper, the photograph reveals iPad 3 to be 9.50mm thick.

Compare this to iPad 2’s depth of 8.8mm (the original iPad is 13.4mm), and the third-generation iPad could end up a hair thicker than its predecessor could. Or, if we are really nitpicking, it is 0.81mm thicker. It would seem there is some merit to that talk of a slightly thicker iPad 3 with more tapering and narrower bezel. Apple is likely to unveil iPad 3 at a media event next March 7.

According to sources that spoke with 9to5Mac’s Mark Gurman, at least three next-generation iPads are expected. It is speculated iPad 3 would run a dual-core A5X chip with an improved graphics engine. This chip is said to be an evolution of iPad 2’s A5 processor and not a major upgrade that the rumored quad-core A6 silicon is expected to be. Near-immediate availability is being mulled for iPad 3 as shipments were spotted landing at ports of multiple countries around the world.

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You wanna see what the front of the iPad 3 is going to look like?

The iPad 3 is going to look a lot like iPad 2—until you turn it on, that is. If the purported iPad 3 front glass spy shot on the right is an indication, the third-generation iPad (rumored for the March 7 unveiling) will sport almost identical appearance to its predecessor. Discovered by Apple.pro, a usually reliable source for Apple hardware rumors, the front glass part shows literally the same 9.7-inch size and shape as the iPad 2, even down to the home button and the round bezel. Compared to the iPad 2 digitizer assembly seen below, iPad 3 clearly has a longer ribbon cable going all the way to the side of the display. Apart from this aspect, the iPad 3’s front is mostly indistinguishable from iPad 2. It is widely assumed the iPad 3 will rock a 2,048-by-1, 536 pixel resolution display, and a set of manufacturing spy shots suggest that—surprisingly—Samsung is manufacturing those high-resolution displays and not Sharp or LG Display, as previously thought.

As Apple does not keep all its eggs in the same basket, the company could (and probably will) source iPad 3 panels from multiple suppliers. Interestingly, Samsung’s board of directors approved plans today to spin the company’s LCD display business into a new entity. The wholly owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics, the new company is now called Samsung Display Company and it will merge with Samsung Mobile Display and S-LCD to improve competitiveness. The South Korean consumer electronics conglomerate said in a statement: “The display market is undergoing rapid chances with OLED panels expected to fast replace LCD panels to become the mainstream.”

Now, some media outlets speculate Apple will make a mistake by advertising iPad 3 as Retina-capable, arguing a 2,048-by-1, 536 display does not meet Apple’s Retina specifications. We deconstruct this myth right after the break.

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Actual iPad 3 production display placed under microscope, Retina Display confirmed

Macrumors claimed to have obtained one of the screens floating around on the Internet from iPad 3 production. Putting it under a microscope, the publication indeed discovered it has 4 times the pixels as an iPad 2 or double the horizontal and double the vertical, which yields 2,048-by-1,536 pixels.

Physically, the purported iPad 3 display is the same size as the current iPad 1 and iPad 2 display at 9.7″ in diagonal, and looks quite similar to the naked eye.

However, when comparing the iPad 3 display to one from an iPad 2 under a microscope, the difference in resolutions becomes readily apparent, with the iPad 3 display’s pixels appearing to be one-quarter the size of those on the iPad 2.

We are just a few weeks away from the anticipated March 7 announcement. While the Retina display was expected for some time, there might still be some surprises.

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Leaked iOS 5.1 pre-GM build contains camera slider and Japanese Siri?

Portuguese language blog BlogdoiPhone leaked reported screenshots of the iOS 5.1 ‘pre-GM’ (via MacRumors) that it claimed to receive from a local carrier. We already postulated iOS 5.1 is most likely going to launch with the iPad 3 on the rumored March 7 date. Today’s leaked screenshots reveal two more features in iOS 5.1, such as a new camera button on the home screen, and Japanese Siri.

On earlier versions of iOS, double clicking the home button revealed the camera button that you can click, but today’s leaked screenshots (above, left) show iOS 5.1 will now have a camera button that slides up to turn on the camera. This change eliminates accidental clicks.

Earlier this week, we discovered that Siri revealed the Japanese language is on its way to the voice-activated assistant. Today’s leaked screenshots also show that Japanese Siri support is included in iOS 5.1 (above, right).

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ChinaTimes: Apple said to have ordered 65 million 264PPI Retina displays from LG and Samsung for iPad 3

Apple iPad 3 rumors indicate a March 7 announcement with a 2,048-by-1, 536-pixel Retina display, quad-core A6 processor, improved cameras, and now LTE chip. The over-all design of the tablet will remain the same, according to the consensus, but the big new feature  will obviously be the new Retina display. Rumors also indicate LG and Samsung are manufacturing the display. ChinaTimes said in a new report this evening that Apple ordered a whopping 65 million 264PPI Retina displays from both LG and Samsung. Both have reportedly already begun production, as well. It is not clear if this number includes orders from Sharp, who is rumored to be building displays from the iPad 3.

For comparison, Apple ordered 40 million displays for the iPad 2. Today’s report indicates a substantial 60 percent to 70 percent increase over iPad 2. If these reports are true, Apple is thinking big for its new tablet.

The iPad 2 is currently the world’s hottest tablet due to selling 15.4 million during the holiday quarter. With a big feature like the Retina display, Apple could potentially blow these numbers out of the water. China, and other emerging markets, could contribute to the influx of sales.

So, when can you get your hands on one?

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WSJ: Verizon and AT&T to carry iPad 3 LTE

Adding to earlier reports today, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that Verizon and AT&T will carry the iPad 3 rocking LTE. Also backing up earlier claims, WSJ said Apple would hold its media event to unveil the iPad 3 during the first week of March.

Verizon Communications Inc. and AT&T Inc. will sell a version of the coming iPad that runs on their newest fourth-generation wireless networks, according to people familiar with the matter, as the battle to cash in on big investments in mobile broadband heats up.

It is not certain if Sprint will carry the LTE version on its upcoming LTE network, according to the publication.

One of its sources is the infamous Captain Obvious:

When LTE isn’t available, the new iPad will default to a slower network technology, one of these people said.

The iPad 3 is rumored to feature Apple’s A6 quad-core processor, Retina display, LTE, upgraded camera, and more, according to multiple sourcesiMore reported today that the iPad 3’s announcement will occur specifically on March 7 with a launch shortly after.

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Leaked iPad 3 parts match, suggest Sharp-made Retina Display


Mounting screw holes on an alleged iPad 3 back plate fit those found on Sharp’s high-resolution LCD panel, believed to be designed specifically for iPad 3.

As the rumored early-March iPad 3 introduction draws near, purported parts have leaked increasingly. One of the more prominent spy shots came last week through Japanese blog Macotakara that published an image supposedly representing a high-resolution iPad 3 panel manufactured by Sharp, which was obtained by parts reseller Eye Lab Factory. Today, the reseller matched the leaked parts, namely the alleged iPad 3 dock connector, back plate, and Sharp’s LCD panel.

According to the post, the back panel hints at a slightly thicker iPad 3 gaining about 1mm in profile that is likely to house new components and a bigger battery to drive more on-screen pixels and a dual-LED backlit system. Other than that, the back panel part purportedly belonging to iPad 3 is the same width and height as on iPad 2. As for the 2,048-by-1, 536-pixel resolution display allegedly manufactured by Sharp, it is a perfect fit…

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Micro-SIMs arriving at AT&T, perhaps in anticipation of 4G LTE iPhone and iPad 3 (update: nope for Pantech Burst/Element)

Update: We’ve been told by a source at AT&T that those micro-SIMS are for the forthcoming Pantech Burst and Element which are also on the way to AT&T this week.


A regular AT&T SIM card (left) and a 4G LTE Micro-SIM (right). Click for larger.

A new batch of Micro-SIMs arrived at AT&T stores. We would normally pass on the news—if those were normal non-miniaturized 4G LTE Micro-SIMs. Based on an anonymous tip, Phone Arena noted AT&T now getting LTE Micro-SIM cards “could be an indication that the next iPhone will finally support 4G LTE connectivity.” If you ask us, those are likely for the Nokia Lumia 900 that is hitting the AT&T network on March 18.

Granted, it is not entirely out of question that AT&T LTE Micro-SIMs are in anticipation of a sixth-generation iPhone that is presumably scheduled for an announcement this summer. Apple was the first major handset maker to switch to tiny 3G SIM cards with iPhone 4, which was a move born out of necessity due to space constraints in the 9.3mm device. The iPhone 4/4S are the only Apple products compatible with the Micro-SIM standard.

What about the iPad 3, you ask….

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What DON’T we know about the next iPad (besides its name)?

The next iPad will have the name “iPad 3,” according to the consensus of rumors, and it features a faster processor/GPU while remaining the same size as the current iPad 2. Its unveiling is in a month (March 7th is the first Wednesday) and will be available (in Wi-Fi certainly) almost immediately after.

The big differentiator this year is the “Retina Display” with a staggering 2048-by-1536 pixel screen, likely made by Sharp/Samsung/LG. An Apple employee told The New York Times that the display was “truly amazing” and it must be with a pixel count that lies between the 21- and 27-inch iMacs squeezed into a 9.7-inch display. Consider: You can watch a Blu-ray movie at native resolution with over 100 pixels on the side and nearly 500 pixels below to “play with.”

Oh, by the way: How many megapixels is 2048-by-1536? Just over 3.

That screen sounds like it might take more juice to power, but Apple will add some extra battery capacity, which might make the iPad 3 slightly thicker. The battery life will likely continue with 10 hours as the baseline (why make the case slightly bigger or smaller otherwise?).

One of the unanswered questions is whether the Samsung S5L8945X inside will be a dual or quad core processor. While this is mostly a “speeds and feeds” type of question and will not relate too much to real-world performance, it would seem that the overwhelming evidence points to quad-core. Apple’s iPad 2 was one of the first dual core tablets and with NVIDIA getting set to announce a group of quad core phones, Apple’s once a year upgrade would suggest a quad. As the S5L8945X name implies above, there will be some extra horsepower on the GPU side as well.

LTE capability is also a big question. The radios for LTE will add some weight and cost, while also acting as a harder hit on the battery. However, with Apple’s once a year release cycle and the overwhelming amount of evidence that has tied Apple to LTE, it would seem that Apple will have a LTE iPad—but perhaps one not available at the launch. Next generation lower power LTE chips are just coming off the assembly lines at Qualcomm.

More, including Bluetooth, Camera, NFC, Gig Wifi, and Thunderbolt is available below:

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