As someone who described the first iPad as "not designed to be your one true love" and is not afraid to take on the Apple zealots, Adam Turner isn't averse to having a dig at the Apple - their products and the people who seem to worship them.
Which is why we were interested to know what he thought about the new iPad. Here's what he has to say:
Whatever you want to call it, Apple's new iPad is a more significant upgrade than the last one.
Apple's new iPad has extra grunt, a razor sharp retina display and lightning fast 4G, but it's not called the iPad 3, iPad 4G or even the iPad HD. It's just the plain old "iPad". That's sure to confuse a few people.
Breaking the iGadget naming convention is a blow to Apple's marketing machine and headline writers everywhere, as it's harder to whip up hysteria when you don't have a number to focus on. Yet it was bound to happen eventually. Perhaps it's partially in response to the backlash against the iPhone 4S when people were expecting the mythical iPhone 5. Chances are the next iPhone will just be called the "iPhone".
The problem with product numbers is that they can set people's expectations too high. To be honest the iPad 2 only deserved to be called the iPad 1.5. Sure the iPad 2 was thinner and faster than its predecessor, but I didn't hear anyone complaining that the first iPad was too fat and slow. The second iPad was an incremental upgrade at best and I'd say this third iPad is the true iPad 2. But Cupertino has abandoned the numbering system so the "iPad" it is.
So what does this new numberless iPad have to offer? One big ticket item is 4G LTE access, but unfortunately Aussies are in high-speed limbo. The new 4G-capable iPads only support 700 and 2100 MHz LTE mobile broadband networks, to cater for the US market. Unfortunately Telstra's LTE network runs at 1800 MHz, so users will be forced to rely on HSPDA (although the potential for 42 Mbps via DC-HSDPA is not a bad consolation prize). Optus and Vodafone have trialed LTE at several frequencies but it still remains to be seen whether Aussie iPad 4G owners will be left in the lurch.
Personally I'd stick with Telstra anyway, considering Optus and Vodafone's disappointing network performance over the last few years. At this stage LTE coverage is limited and you'll find few if any online services which benefit from the extra speed anyway. Most Australians can wait for LTE in the next iPad.
What's more interesting is that Apple has rolled quad-band HSDPA, GSM and CDMA into the one device, making life easier for people who tend to roam networks in different countries. Apple has also enabled Personal Hotspot, so you can share an iPad's mobile broadband connection via USB, Wi-Fi or Bluetooth.
The new iPad's retina display is probably its biggest selling point, boosting the screen resolution to 2048x1536. In terms of pixel density, it's similar to the impressive leap from the iPhone 3G S to the iPhone 4. Apple has also cranked up the colour saturation. For iGadget fans, the iPad's new Retina display will be love at first sight and could be reason enough to upgrade.
This new iPad comes as a blow to Android competitors who are still playing catch-up with the iPad 2. Apple is describing the retina display as "resolutionary", a term which will surely leave pedantic linguists wanting to punch random people in the street.
However you describe it, Apple's latest iPad is once again leading the pixel race with Android. However the flagship Android tablets can still brag about their quad-core processors. The latest iPad sports a dual-core A5X powerplant with quad-core graphics, which Cupertino claims doubles the performance without impacting on the 10 hour battery life.
While it's easy to get caught up in a game of "mine's bigger than yours", processor specs aren't as important as real world performance. Side by side tests will reveal if iPad owners have anything to be ashamed of. I expect they'll measure up just fine. When you combine the iPad's new features with the price drop of $50 or so, Android has some stiff competition on its hands. To make matters worse, Apple has also slashed $100 off the price of the 16GB iPad 2.
Admittedly the new iPad is .6 mm thicker and 50 gm heavier than its predecessor, so it's not quite as petite as some new Android players. But considering the major improvements, anyone who see this minor change as a reason to bag Apple's latest tablet offering is really clutching at straws.
Of course, we'll reserve our final judgement for our full review - but whether you like Apple or not, in this writer's opinion the truth is that the only iPad killer is the next iPad. It hits the shelves on March 16 and looks like a winner.