x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

New iPad sticks with the old winning formula

Apple fans and technology experts predict huge demand for new tablet computer.

Mohammed Jawad of Dubai takes a photo of himself and the Yerba Buena Centre of California, where Apple unveiled the latest iPad.
Mohammed Jawad of Dubai takes a photo of himself and the Yerba Buena Centre of California, where Apple unveiled the latest iPad.

DUBAI // Apple fans, retailers and technology experts are predicting huge demand for the new iPad after the tablet computer was unveiled on Wednesday.

A high-definition Retina screen and more powerful processor will make it the top device for movies, pictures, e-books and applications, say experts.

It also holds the promise of better software, allowing developers more freedom in creating apps.

“With a new, more powerful processor inside and that amazing Retina display on the front, we can’t wait to see how app developers use Apple’s new hardware to create new and graphically gorgeous content,” said Thomas Shambler, the editor of Stuff magazine.

Although some Apple enthusiasts would have liked a completely redesigned iPad for the latest version, Mr Shambler said Apple was right to stick with a winning formula.

“Since it did it so well the first time around, why change?” he asked. “The new iPad looks just like its predecessor, the iPad 2 – but it’s the screen that really sets it apart.

“The new iPad looks like the old one but has a faster processor, a better camera and one of the best screens of any mobile device currently available. What’s not to like?”

In general, consumers have given the tablet the thumbs up but some were a little disappointed that not all of the features they had hoped for made it into the new device.

“I would have liked to have seen the Siri voice-controlled personal assistant,” said Imran Hussain, a Dubai resident and avid Apple fan. “I have no idea why it’s not been included.”

Despite the missing feature, Mr Hussain believes the third version of the iPad will be the most successful to date.

“There’s no competition from any of the other technology companies,” he said.

The new iPad has a 2048x1536-pixel display, making it a higher resolution than most high-definition televisions; an A5X dual-core processor that will improve graphics; and an upgraded five-megapixel front-facing camera.

There is also an option to buy a 4G version of the tablet that will take advantage of faster mobile connection speeds.

The new device will be initially released in 10 countries, including the United States, United Kingdom and Canada, next Friday followed by another 26 countries on March 23.

As yet there is no official release date for the UAE.

Online shops are already making preparations to import the iPad from the UK and US on release day in those countries.

“We have already had huge interest from customers wanting to pre-order the new iPad,” said Sheriff Rizwan, the chief executive of ALshop.com.

The retailer is aiming to have between 100 and 300 iPads available, but the prices were not known yesterday.

It will be selling for £400 (Dh2,317) in the UK.

Andy Castonguay, the principal analyst at Informa Telecoms & Media in Dubai, said the new iPad would maintain Apple’s dominance of the tablet market.

Mr Castonguay said improvements to the device’s wireless technology were strategically the most important change.