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My iPad Predictions

I like to play this little game the day before an announcement from Apple. Based on the tea leaves I've read (no inside knowledge at all). Here's what I think Apple will announce tomorrow.

Apple will announce the iPad HD with a retina display and a form factor similar to the iPad 2. It will also come with Siri and an improved camera. It will go up for preorder this Friday and be available March 16th. It will sell for the same price as the current iPad 2 and iPad 2 will get a price break. Apple will also announce a new version of the Apple TV with better HD possibly integrated with an app on the iPad.

I'm uncertain about LTE. I put the chances at 40% that it will have LTE. There are a few good arguments why it would (Verizon insistence for one) but Apple doesn't usually like to take the battery hit on new tech like that before it's completely widespread. Remember the first iPhone was only Edge. Plus the next iPad would be the 4th and give them a nice iPad 4G name to consider.
Steve Wooding's profile photoJay Carroll's profile photoJim Blaich's profile photoMikhail Garber's profile photo
confirmed for ipad 3

Once a day, the iPad 3 displays a picture of someone's knee. If you can guess who it belongs to within 3 minutes you win iTunes credit.
... extra credit if the knee is impaled by an arrow.
And once a day, apple will fire a random arrow into the air into some unlucky ipad user's iPad while in knee mode.
yes HD (1080p)
no retina
no Siri
same form factor
yes camera
yes 10 day availability
yes price
yes apple TV
no LTE (possibly, wifi only for first 6 months)
And other than the higher resolution display, it will still not be as powerful as Asus Transformer tablets!
if they do go with LTE on the new iPad, i would like to see a managed LTE, when it does background stuff, it doesn't need LTE, it just does 3G, but when you download something, it switches to LTE to assist in downloading something.
I would bet AT&T is lobbying Apple not to release a LTE version just yet not to mention what Sprint as well. The inclusion of LTE truly only benefits Verizon. The rest of your predictions seem to be what I am expecting as well.

On a side note I miss the days of Apple surprise announcements. It seems nothing can be kept secret these days. Regardless of the specs above I'm not sure I will upgrade right away.
+Anthony Russo .. and thats why specs shouldn't be part of a marketing campaign. It's akin to the whole Megapixel horseshit, marketed for digital cameras.
It will be as powerful as it needs to be to do what it does - and that's a big plus. You'll understand when the battery life is double all the spec touting clones. ;)
I agree. Thanx for including Apple TV. The announcement did say something to see... and touch. I'm thinking no on the LTE because of the battery issues you cite. I'm also looking forward to the lower iPad2 price since that is my best chance of getting one anytime soon.
This is the first announcement since Steve's passing, wonder how they'll remember him?
+Jay Carroll I agree specs aren't all it is about. But Android 4.0 is actually a preferred OS for me and 12 to 18 hours of battery life in the Asus Transformer does the job admirably.
If Verizon doesn't want devices that don't support LTE, then so be it. What's the harm to Apple? Sure, it is a bit different with a phone because you have to have a carrier for data, or else you should have just bought an iPod Touch. But with the iPad, there isn't that dependency, you can just get an AT&T 3G version or wi-fi only version, then if you want a verizonLTE myfi or whatever you can go get that. The simple fact that they will have had to address battery life with the retina display alone makes me think that they won't bother with 4G in this version.
Like to expand on the wacky prediction that iPad 3 will be triangular (3 sided) and sport a 16 shade sunlight readable grayscale screen on one side, and color on another side.
On my office whiteboard I have my predictions from the end of January. Retina Display, 8MP Camera+HD front camera, Quad CPU, Same Battery Life, 32GB base memory, Faster GPU.
No LTE - Chipsets still have not matured

Unlike Tom, I forgot to think about the software, but yeah it will have Siri. New minor rev of iOS. 5.02 to cover it. Maybe more surprises in the new version like TV support. (Of some kind)

Not really sure now about the 32 GB and the CPU. But that's what I had

iPad HD will either surprise or meh people.
Apple announcements are not about specs, they are about something "magical". I hope to see deep integration between Apple TV and the iPad. Maybe ATV will get the ability to rebroadcast my cablebox like Slingbox.
App developers had to sign a new contract today; a sign of apps on the TV?
Man I hate "HD" in product names. It's so tacky now.
Wow. Didn't expect a troll.
+Mikhail Garber I'm trying hard to figure this out, but according to that prediction, what on earth would be the point of a new iPad? It's their hottest item, and it seems weird to me that they would do a momentum-less refresh like that.
+Shawn Startup An internet Troll, defined, is a person who comments on a topic with content that in no way reflects the original intent of the topic and only serves to represent one's own interest and/or inflame those who's interests are represented by the topic.
+Tim Valenta, it would be in line with prior incremental updates they did. When you got "hottest item", you sell them and minimize the costs, including RandD costs.
+Mikhail Garber And I can understand that, but ... they've got new technology that they should be putting in to make everybody that already has one of these to buy another one :) Making the camera marginally better and calling it good isn't enough, in my opinion.
+Mikhail Garber See that's where your logic breaks down, Apple as a company (particularly Steve Jobs himself) does not make decisions on product design and features based upon costs. They make what they think is absolutely the best product given the technical and aesthetic vision behind the original design and what is currently available and what constitutes the best user experience (in their opinion). They put design and UX above profit, which is one of the reasons I enjoy their products.
+Jay Carroll Sorry Jay, that is for the Asus Transformer again, 2 years old. The modle I am talking about is the Transformer Prime which is by far better than the iPad 2. The iPad 3 I expect to be close to similar in specs and the ecosystem being the real selling point.

I personally like the Android/Google ecosystem better but understand the Apple mentality and it will sell millions blindly. Both similar tablets but Apple's cult makes them the bigger seller regardless of it being a lesser or equal tablet. Only advance they will have is the display resolution.
I want to see these tea leaves you're reading
It'll be interesting to see whether LTE is included. I think Tom's right on the chance it is included or not.
I'm on board with all of these predictions.

Regarding the Apple "Cult" mentality, personally I'm an Apple fan. Nothing against Android. Would love to play more with it. But when it comes to putting my money down on the barrel head, Apple edges the competition as far as I'm concerned.

Apple vs Android on technical merits and comparisons of the ecosystem are one thing. The generalization that people buying one or the other are doing so blindly is, quite frankly, insulting.

With that said, I'm also fine with incremental upgrades. I'm still rocking the original iPad. The iPad 2 was a nice bump and I bought a couple as gifts for relatives, but didn't see the need to jump in myself. Maybe I've not taken in enough of the Kool-Aid. ;)

So if the predictions are close, then even if it's a minor jump from an iPad 2 to an iPad HD, it'll be a great improvement for me
I agree on most of the things mentioned above. personally I'd like to see a more vivid display. Pretty sure the name will be iPad 3 and LTE will be a no show.
+Jay Carroll So one site will claim 9 hours for the Prime with 10 hours for the iPad2. However the Prime has the keyboard dock option which is a nice plus.

Also I think this post pretty much settles the argument:

In the end, I have no hate for the iPad2. It's a damn good tablet if you like Apple stuff. I just am not one of those people and It is not the most bestest, awesomest, greatest, tablet out there.
+Anthony Russo
Haha.. that's great. All the quotes are from sites that I've never even heard quoted much less have read. CNET is the only recognizable blog there and of all recognizable blogs, I take their opinion with a grain of salt. It's not about claims, it's about reputability and methods. AnandTech delivers on both, consistently and impartially.

So, anyhoo, best case scenario - the Prime approaches the iPad 2. Congrats. They caught up just in time for the successor. :)
I think it'll be on sale on Friday. SxSW starts on Friday and they'll want to get pop-up stores down there like last year.
I was hoping it'd be on sale Friday, but I'm seeing too much about the 16th. I believe we'll see LTE on AT&T and Verizon.

This version is all about the retina screen though (whatever dpi is considered retina), as the invitation clearly indicates. Any other changes will be in support of the new resolution and power requirements. Form factor, as we've seen from countless leaked images, is essentially the same; just slightly thicker and more tapered.
+Jay Carroll Not to worry, there is a successor to the Prime that will be stronger than your iPad3. The flow is something like this:

iPad 2 below both the Transformer Prime and iPad 3 which are pretty much expected to be rather equal power with iPad 3 having better resolution display. Prime having superior features and functionality everywhere else. Asus Transformer Pad is above all of them and will be out this summer.

I expect you will enjoy your iPad 3 though as it is in no way a bad Tablet and you like the Apple ecosystem, just as I enjoy the Prime. Both can exist like Coke and Pepsi.
+Jay Carroll You're arguing over battery life when comparing apples and oranges as far as hardware goes? Really? I also fail to see any comparison between the iPad/Transformer when it comes to actual usage. Unless you define actual usage as living through your tablet and constantly using it. Don't forget the Tegra 3 should do very well regarding background tasks.
I agree +Don Fuldauer that it is more than just battery life nowadays. They both pretty much last you throughout the day. It is about usability. Those that like the walled garden are happy with the iPad. Those that like more freedom and tweaking are happy with Android. Coke and Pepsi.
+Don Fuldauer Hardware is only relevant so far as it is sufficient relative to the capabilities of the device. Battery life in a mobile device is paramount. If you are thinking, 'hey it gets me through the day', that's fine; I have a higher standard. I want to only have to charge once a week.
Regardless, I will buy the iPad 3, not only because it is the best the market has to offer (fact). But because I value the resolution of the screen - that is the most important spec, as far as I'm concerned.
+Don Fuldauer
The Tegra 3 is a novel, innovative processor. I just have no use for it.

As to the tired 'walled garden' comments - you root your Android device the same way you jailbreak your iOS device. Anything is possible on either device. Anything.
I think if Verizon wants an LTE iPad 3 they will be selling the hotspots again locked only to the iPad 3 like they did for iPad 1 & 2.
There 3 performance is a big disappointment for me. GPU performance is not on par to where I expected. Photoshop touch/an office app/full auto cad type off apps will need the hoarse power...
Keep in mind, the number of cores is not in itself an indicator of the performance you can expect. Apple owns the chip foundry, the cpu/gpu included will be designed at die level to do precisely what the iPad needs it to do. It doesn't have to be versatile or conform to the needs of many devices. It can be targeted and optimized to run iOS apps specifically.
This is a hardward/software harmony you'll find nowhere else.
+Jay Carroll Not fact until tomorrow and then that is up to debate as best is a subjective term depending on what someone is looking for.

Specs are not important but are used in comparison as they are not subjective. What is important is the specs that matter to you. If resolution is most important, even though it is only 3 feet from your eye, then the iPad3 is going to work for you. With the distance a tablet is used the resolution of the Prime is good great for me. I wouldn't notice the difference.

As for the walled garden argument, I (like most people) do not root or jailbreak my device. Android gives me enough freedom so that is not necessary to me. It is to some but I like the balance of freedom to stability I have. Apple did not offer enough freedoms to me. The Stock keyboard and lack of widgets comes to mind as examples of why I would have to jailbreak an iOS device but not root an Android one.

For battery, a day is fine. I am not usually in a situation that I cannot charge my device nightly. I also have the option of the keyboard dock for more battery as well as more functionality. Truly an innovative device.
+Jay Carroll Good point. Apple gets the most out of their hardware and chips because they are in control of the entire thing from nuts to bolts. Android in being more flexible needs the added power that their tablets provide to get the same performance that Apple gets in lesser hardware.

Good discussion BTW.
Yes, but what you can do on an Android device, varies widely by device. Most Android users I know do, in fact, root their device. As a developer, I would never use the device stock as delivered. So, I stay jailbroken. But that's the point, all things are possible (its just software after all) and in the end, the consistency, stability, and integration of the iPad is clearly preferable over anything available running android. I believe the vast majority of people purchasing Android tablets (especially for the first time) are doing so because they are less expensive. The exception to this are those working in technology with an affinity for Google or a hatred of Apple (or both).

As to the keyboard, I have a hundred bluetooth keyboards that are perfectly usable. I don't need to buy the one made for my device and don't need to supplement by battery.
+Jay Carroll Most Android users you and I know is not most Android users though. Most Android users don't root their device. Most iOS users don't jailbreak. What they do out of the box is completely what matters to the market. Apple succeeds because it is super simple and they hold your hand and make everything rosy in the garden. It works for them and the mass droves that don't know the first thing about technology. This is most of the world.

Android works out of the box simply now too (finally). It is less of a walled garden though and their are things you might have to do on your own. Most people that know about technology a bit are in this realm. This is the rest of the world and is growing larger all the time as technology generations grow up.

The tiny % is the people that are developers or really hardcore tech fans. This is a tiny minority and they are the rooters and jailbreakers.

Both systems fill their need and work well for what they are designed for. My only gripe is the clams that the iPad is the most super tablet out there. It isn't. Come 3 months from now the iPad3 wont be either if it even launches as the most powerful tomorrow. The only other thing that annoys me about Apple is the cult-like following. Android has the cult-like following too, but at least it includes people more like us than like fashion models and soccer moms.
i agree, i think it will be more cosmetic changes than anything else, and with siri intergration. I did hear rumors of a quad core processor as well.
Every time on TNT you said something about "a form factor similar to iPad 2", I wondered: how much different could it be? They have established the tablet as a minimalist device. There's only so many things you can "minimalize" away.
+Anthony Russo
You are following a culture, not just a company. A company with culture, a company with a history of valuing design and quality above what will boost the bottom line. Where else am I going to read about the CEO sitting with the designers and the engineers painstakingly going over every detail of the hardware and software. No other executive would tell the board to fuck off, and build exactly what he personally thought was best.

Why should I want to buy items so personal from Samsung or HTC or Motorola... what do I gain from that aside from a gizmo with no soul.
+Jay Carroll We still talking about a computer right? My devices don't have souls. They are tools, not entities. Your statement has Apple cult written all over it.
They are poorly designed tools, created to make as much money as possible for the manufacturer. With as little care to the software integration as possible while still maintaining functionality.
+Stuart Moore News to me. I'm a developer and haven't been presented with a new contract, either via email or when logging into my account.
I'm not an Apple fan, nor a Microsoft one, nor any for that matter. I'm for the one that has the greatest potential to eliminate lock in, corporate greed, and distortion fields. So, the Apple announcement just doesn't have much of an impact on me.

Even if they do come out with a new model it is just an update to the old, and with their current cycle they are going to run out of things to do and add in order to enhance it pretty soon.

On top of that they are actually playing some catch up as their competition is running ahead with hardware and software. Their software though nice is too restricted (no flash, no true multitasking) and hardware-wise (no GPS in the cheap model, no flash slot, no HDMI, and no 16:9 aspect ratio, too little RAM).

Their store policies (and apparently automation) is too restrictive costing some developers dearly. Bryan Lunduke has had his livelihood cut out from under him as his app was removed from their store, even though he paid them the yearly fee (they said he hadn't, then they acknowledged he had, but they don't know how to get it back into the store--some defect in their system--he's gone weeks now without any income from the app (which is his livelihood)).

Here's Bryan's latest update:

"Apple has confirmed to me that they do not "compensate for technical issues". Even when those technical issues result in significant lost income for others. And even when Apple drops the ball entirely -- and they fail to return calls or emails to people who are dead in the water for extended periods of time. Still waiting on updates from Apple on all other issues -- including when Apple's system will be "permanently fixed" so that my Apps don't disappear again, and when they will pay what they already owe me (was supposed to have an update from them 4 days ago, but so far nothing)."
Great, Jim. So, why are you commenting on a thread about iPad 3 predictions?
+Jay Carroll I see a difference between your analysis of Android and my analysis of Apple. I have never said Apple is a bad product, but only that I prefer Android and the reasons I do. You on the other hand have bashed Android consistently so you either think the millions are wrong, or just are having trouble accepting Android is a good product you just don't happen to prefer.
A new touch feedback system now seems likely to me. I mean, why does Apple mention "touch" in their event invitation? We've been touching the iPad for 2 years. I think we've got the hang of it by now. Unless... there's a change to the touch interface.
Some actual predictions for the predictions thread:

Retina: duh
Cores: N/A irrelevant
Memory: 1GB already confirmed
New dock connector: no
Wifi: 802.11n 5ghz (want)
LTE: VZ & AT&T only
Camera: same as 4s, 5 & 8 MP, f/2.4 rear

New more protective smart covers: yes

16, 32, 64GB capacities with pricing matching current iPad 2 lineup

8GB iPad 2: yes
$100 discount on iPad 2 across SKUs

New catalogs section, like newstand but for shopping within catalogs. Possibly with an NFC like payment system.

+Jay Carroll Because it shows a pattern for Apple. Because it shows them to be just another company, maybe driven more by control and greed and the ability to distort reality. Because it means that their product is just another product in a line. The iPad 3 is just another product by a company that with all the factors I listed are not really worthy of this much attention. I think we used to watch these announcements because we had Steve Jobs to awe us, yet today these updates are pretty mundane. We know the make up of the item before it is released and we know how the competition moves.

My point is that these are just announcements that we shouldn't be spending so much time on because they are just another company trying to compete and they are not necessarily as benevolent as we might wish.

My other point is that they charge greatly for their hardware which is really in a catch up state, so we shouldn't be to surprised to see yet another iPhone 4S-type lackluster announcement.

Better graphics? No. Beter display? yes. Better multitasking? No. More RAM? Maybe, but probably not. Better store integration? Not likely, as what more could they do? Quad core CPU? OK, happening in all markets. Lower price? Not likely as that is a threat to their basic business model--they don't want price wars--they want to be able to keep their prices as high as possible for as long as possible--and that's pretty much the only reason for all the lawsuits--keeping prices high.
so I was wrong on a) retina display b) LTE. Good way to be wrong :-)
Yes, and greed is good.
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