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Apple Announces iPad Media Device

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Ending months (years?) of rumors, Apple today officially unveiled their tablet computer named the Apple iPad. During a January 27 2010 Apple Event, Apple CEO Steve Jobs called the iPad “way better than a laptop, way better than a phone”.

The iPad weights in only 1.5 pounds, which is currently lighter than any netbook, and comes in at 0.5 inches thin. The device also includes a 9.7-inch IPS display (looks 4:3?). Internally, the iPad includes a 1GHz Apple-built ARM A4 processor which includes both the CPU and graphics chip.

On the outside, the device includes a Home Button, volume rocker, silent switch, speaker, microphone, 30-pin connector, headphone jack, SIM tray, and sleep/wake button.

Storage on the iPad comes in three capacities; 16, 32, and 64GB flash SSD. The device also gets approximately 10 hours of battery life (watching video) and a whopping month of standby time. Users also get 802.11n WiFi and Bluetooth 2.1+EDR.

The iPad also comes in a 3G data connection model. The data plans in the USA with AT&T, which have no contract, will be $14.99 for 250MB per month or an unlimited data plan for $29.99. International carrier plans, such as Canada, will not be announced until June/July 2010. The 3G version of the iPad is also unlocked, supports GSM micro SIM, and includes a black plastic covering for the antenna such as the original iPhone and current generations of iPod Touch.

Navigation of the iPad is practically identical to the iPhone/iPod Touch, in which reading and viewing media is done as seamlessly as on the iPhone/iPod Touch.

Like many of Apple’s other devices, the iPad includes iCal, Safari (no flash?), Email,

Address Book, Maps, and iTunes for music, TV shows, podcasts, and, movies. YouTube is also included with high-definition streaming content.

On the iPad App Store, the device can run “virtually every one of these apps, unmodified, right out of the box.” Apps can be run either very small, 1:1 pixel, or in the center of the screen. Moreover, apps can also “pixel double” and run in full screen, in a low resolution mode.

The iPad further includes an accelerometer and built-in compass. The device also has an included orientation sensor for moving between landscape and portrait views.

The virtual keyboard on the iPad covers half of the screen when holding the iPad in landscape, which is similar to how the keyboard acts on the iPhone/iPod Touch.

Pricing

  • WiFi 16GB: $499
  • WiFi 32GB: $599
  • WiFi 64GB: $699
  • WiFi + 3G 16GB: $629
  • WiFi + 3G 32GB: $729
  • WiFi + 3G 64GB: $829

The WiFi models will ship near the end of March 2010 worldwide.

The WiFi + 3G models will ship near the end of April 2010.

Check out the summarized spec list below:

  • 9.7 inch IPS display
  • 0.5 inches thin
  • 1.5 pounds
  • Full capacitive multi-touch interface
  • 16, 32, 64GB Flash memory storage
  • Built-in Speaker/Microphone
  • Accelerometer/Compass
  • 1 GHz Apple-branded A4 chip
  • Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
  • 802.11n WiFi
  • 30-pin Dock connector (same as iPhone)
  • 10-hours of battery life, one month standby time
  • Runs all iPhone apps
  • App Store

Standard iPad Applications:

  • App Store
  • Calendar
  • Contacts
  • iPod
  • iTunes Store
  • Mail
  • Maps
  • Movies
  • Notes
  • Photos
  • Safari
  • YouTube

(Images courtesy of Engadget & Gizmodo)

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