Apple announces new iPad with Retina Display, A5X processor with quad-core graphics and LTE connectivity, coming March 16th

Daniel Bader

March 7, 2012 1:35 pm

We knew it was coming. There were rumours and guesses and speculation since mid-2011. But the iPad 3 is here, and it’s almost exactly what we were expecting — and hoping for. And yes, it does have a home button (despite what the picture above may misconstrue).

The iPad 3 is roughly the same size as the second version, but has a 2048×1536 pixel resolution. As Phil Schiller said, “That’s 3.1 million pixels. The most ever in a mobile device.” Despite having a pixel density of 264ppi, Apple is comfortable calling it a Retina Display because one typically holds a tablet further away from his or her face than a smartphone. The iPad is gauged as Retina by holding it 15-inches from the face, whereas the iPhone 4 is typically held 10-inches or less from the face. And it’s the perception of not being able to see the individual pixels that’s most important.

In terms of internal specs, we’re looking at the rumoured A5X SoC with quad-core graphics. This is a higher-clocked custom-built  A5 Cortex A9 ARM-based processor, but instead of a PowerVR SGX543MP2 GPU we have a SGX543MP4+, which is the same GPU with double the cores.

We’re also looking at brand new cameras — dubbed iSight cameras — with a higher-resolution front-facing camera and an autofocus backside-illuminated sensor 5MP shooter on the back. It features similar technology to the iPhone 4S, though fewer pixels: face detection and a hybrid IR sensor. The back camera can also shoot 1080p video with image stabilization.

There doesn’t seem to be Siri implementation anywhere, but Apple is adding voice dictation to the mix. There will be a new microphone button on the bottom row of the keyboard.

And there is 4G LTE support! LTE can go up to 73Mbps, but 3G maxes out at 21Mbps for more rural markets. Apple has confirmed that Rogers, Telus and Bell will be launch partners for LTE in Canada.

Apple is claiming 10 hours of battery life on a single charge, and 9 hours on LTE, which is pretty incredible. The new device is 9.4mm thick and 1.4lbs, slightly thicker and heavier than the previous version.

The iPad is going to be available in Canada on March 16th starting at $519 for the 16GB WiFi model. The prices are the same as the previous version, going all the way up to $849 for the 64GB 4G version. The iPad 2 will continue to be sold, and all models will be heavily discounted. As told you, existing WiFi + 3G models have been reduced by $150, and the iPad 2 WiFi models will each sell for a $100 discount.

More info to come…

Liveblog source: Engadget

  • Rio

    That screen is going to be mouth watering

    • Ballsac Tehbagger

      RIM?

      What about RIM?

    • Runjit Pathamavong

      The Blackberry Playbook is much more functional than this me-too product by Apple.

      iPad 3 is nothing more than a sad attempt by Apple to keep up with RIM.

      I need tools, not toys.

    • Rio

      I can do more with my iPhone that you will ever be able to do with even your playbook. lol Sad but true

    • JUST SAYING

      how much it this Tablet for $699.99 or $799.99, its very expensive

    • ToniCipriani

      And my laptop can do way more. Your point?

    • Rio

      that the iPad/iPhone can do a lot more than the Playbook.

      lol that was a fail comment

    • Geoff

      You could also do more with your iPhone than you could with your iPad. Your iPhone is also over 3 times more expensive. That being said, I don’t agree with you nor the person you were responding to.

    • sp

      if you mean your iPad can use more apps than the Playbook then yes you are correct. only because the iPad has fart, lock, scan and whatever else apps available to you. yeah you are right that it can do more in that sense than the Playbook.

      other than that what else can it do? flash support? nope….music player? yeah playbook does that. movie player? yeah playbook does that too…even better. multi tasking? nope…oh the playbook can do that very very well.

      so what does your iPad do better? or a lot more of?

  • Danny

    Typical Apple misleading marketing….over 300ppi means RETINA not 264!!!! Nothing special at all as it always is with thier products. Seriously put it into prespective….LTE Androids have had that for awhile on tablets. and Camera sensors on a tablet…haha wow I could have a 100 mega pixel on my samsung galaxy tab still would not care!

    • bob

      Who cares what is “retina” anyways?
      Tech web sites such as this one shouldn’t fall into the marketing gimmicks such as “retina” and “quad-core graphics” and tell us only what it really is: 2048×1536 display with (expected) SGX543MP4 GPU.
      No one knows what the CPU is, but given that Apple didn’t talk about it I would expect no or very little performance increase, given that the SoC code name still begins with A5.

    • Rio

      I have explained the retina display concept about a 100 times on this sites but we still get douches like you who make ill educated comments .

      Go do some research before commenting.

    • whatfor

      Did you even read the article or did you just feel like spouting ignorant nonsense. Read the article first. It’s like people copy and paste apple bashing comments on this site.

    • DaveMTL

      Always amazes me how few people seem to actually understand some very basic things such as:
      A5 beats pretty much everything out there in the most crucial element, Graphics. A5X is now twice as fast as A5 at graphics… where does that leave others?
      The screen is simply revolutionary. Retina never meant 300DPI it meant the density of pixels required for a human with 20/20 vision (or worse) to see no pixels at a distance normal for the operation of the device. 10in for cell phone, 15in for tablet. For cell that was 300+, for tablet 260ish +.
      The rest of the tablet was just fine for 70% of the people buying.

      As for multitasking, most people want fast task-switching, practically no one wants multi-tasking. Which BTW, does exist on the iPad. Just not the dumb type that assumes an endless battery exists on these portable devices.

  • Kid.Canada

    Fact: no average user cared about screen res until Apple overhyped retina display.

  • TaroChan

    As expected.. nothing new besides Retina. everything else is already on Android…. decisions decisions..

  • Nobka1

    The graphics are twice faster than tegra 3. Omfg is this the XboxPad?

  • creepynut

    What are you talking about? Retina is a marketing term created by Apple. It can mean whatever they want.

  • Brad F

    9 hours of battery life on LTE? I didn’t think such a thing was possible…

    • ToniCipriani

      … and too busy downranking comments and calling everyone “haters”.

  • John

    Meh. Apple fanboys are jizzing in their pants right now.

  • khk

    This is the highest resolution screen on the market.. I don’t think any tablet will come close to offering this resolution for a long time. Other than the screen everything else is a meh…

    • bob

      It’s mostly because there is no need for it. The most popular 15″ laptop resolution must be 1366×768 right now…

  • sp

    as i said before… i would not pay that much for that. not when the features on my playbook serve my purpose for a tablet.

    thanks but no thanks apple. maybe in a few years…and thats a BIG maybe

  • Mike

    I’m not an Apple fan, but I love the way they handle new product announcements and release dates. Announced today and it will be on storeshelves within a couple weeks, it’s brilliant.

    I’m a gamer, so I’m used to something new being announced then having to wait up to THREE YEARS for its release date.

    • Alpha

      Hardware lifetime is months, software is years. Look at the type of tablets available 3 years ago and what’s available now. There’s no comparison. Late to the hardware game means an uphill battle. Ask RIM about this.

  • jellmoo

    It’s not exactly what I want or need from a tablet, but this is easily going to be the “go to” tablet for the masses. Say what you will, but Apple has built up the perfect ecosystem for Joe and Jane Average.

  • Jean-Michel

    So basicaly what they are saying is: if you think an ipad is good for high quality 3d games buy this, otherwise just grab a cheap tablet for your every day browsing, facebook and photo sharing?

    I HIGHLY doubt an iPad is any good at games until they bring some sort of decent controler…

  • rider8

    @Mike. Its true I like how their products will arrive right after the announcement (not an Apple fan either BTW) without any sort of hiccup or delay.

    A reason for this however is how well Apple controls their employees and information leakage. Other companies have stuff leak out and have to confirm or give clues.. or people just go digging. Apple just withholds everything while its in develipment

  • TaroChan

    Current Apple iPad 2 owners better start selling their iPad 2s if they wan to make some amount of money. They have 9 days to do so, otherwise they’ll take a bigger hit :P.

    On another note, you’ll have different kinds of people lining up, buying multiple and sell for a BIG price. Typical supply vs demand, and time spent in line crap. Pfft… Not even gonna comment on the type of people who do such things. You guys will know though.

  • bambakeek al lail

    does anyone know if bestbuy will have it on march16

  • TaroChan

    @ bambakeek al lail – Who knows? Most likely. Line up two days before Apple fans :P

  • andy c

    wow. The rim fanboys got here before the Android or WP ones did.

    unless you are into ipad gaming or are a semi serious photographer just get the cheaper ipad2

  • zzZZzz

    So, if I’ll be holding the iPad 3 (HD) at less than 15″ from my face and see individual pixels, is it because I’m holding it wrong?

  • GENERAL WONG

    No AWS bands clearly shows that apple will NEVER release an AWS device. All the bands are included, except AWS. So if you expect an Iphone on Videotron, Mobilicity or Wind (or T-Mobile USA) well forget that. for life.

    • bob

      It does support AWS. All LTE networks in Canada are AWS.
      Perhaps you meant UMTS AWS? Then nobody knows if it’s supported or not.

  • shaggyskunk

    That does indeed, look pretty sweet! I’m no apple fan, but, you have to respect a great product when you see it!
    When apple raises the bar, as they have clearly done here….. it’s only great for the consumer!

    • sp

      please explain to me how they raised the bar?

      facts?

  • shaggyskunk

    ….Con’t… (hit publish to soon)…. Anyway, great products from apple, only push Android to come up with even better ones!
    Healthy competition, is where it’s at!

  • CoPWNicus

    New iPad is pretty meh in my opinion, no new innovation just upgraded specs. 500 bucks is way to much in my opinion, you can buy 2 playbooks and even some accessories for the same price.

    iPhone 4S announcement was also pretty meh in my opinion. Apple does make a good product but they havn’t had any new innovations that makes me go wow i want that right now.

    Apple just sells glorified toys that are in a pretty exterior. You can better bang for your buck elsewhere.

    My two cents.

  • John

    Can’t wait for the new Android tablet from Samsung to crush this latest attempt from apple, waiting for the fanboy reaction…

    • jellmoo

      I’m far from an Apple fanboy, but Samsung hasn’t been able to do it yet, after quite a few (probably too many) tries.

      Until app developers really buy into making apps for Android tablets, it’s going to be a tough sell.

      Apple is dominant in this market because they developed the ecosystem along with the device. That’s what the competition is missing.

  • TaroChan

    Is it the iPad 3 or iPad HD? I am confused.

  • Dalex

    Isn’t there a rumored Samsung tablet with higher rez, quad core exynos and newer Mali GPU all running ICS? I’ll spend money on that instead thanks.

    • Poulet

      You’ll spend your money on a rumor?

  • gogakhan

    Good GPU … check… won’t be too big of an improvement as the GPU has to now fill twice the resolution.

    Great screen … check … remember it took 2 years (until 4S) for android to catch up to the ppi of iPhone4. Well this one is going to take another 2 for the tablets as well… but no doubt, it will be a sick screen for a tablet.

    Everything else… meh!

    I would say that its the perfect package (beautiful) for the avg. Joe and Jane… but for the rest of us who actually count the features before buying the products, I guess we have better alternatives (BBOS, Android and WP later this year)…

    But once again… good job Apple… this will sell… and sell it will like as if it was FREE!

  • Jesse

    I just don’t understand the Apple hate….it’s a quality product. Will I switch from my iPad 2? Certainly not unless I really like the new one when I actually try it out. No way in hell though that I will even think of selling mine to mindlessly go out and get “the next best thing”.

  • Andy

    Did anyone else notice that they NEVER ONCE mentioned Dual Core processor?

    This is why I hate going to with Apple. They leave out key specs. It is an A5X “DUAL CORE” Processor, with quad-core graphics.

    That is Dual Core 1GHz. Cheap.

  • Nade

    Decent upgrade, especially the gpu: PS Vita graphics SGX543MP4+!

  • Andy

    Anyone else notice this is a dual core tablet? Apple intentionally left out that piece of information, and for a good reason: sooooo they can highlight the quad core graphics chip. O_o