New is the new new

Financial Mail - - PATTERN RECOGNITION BY TOBY SHAPSHAK - Kate Fer­reira

Even a com­plete Ap­ple con­vert must ad­mit that the nam­ing con­ven­tions of the ipad aren’t the sim­plest. We had the ipad, then the ipad 2, fol­lowed by the “new ipad” and the “fourth gen­er­a­tion ipad”.

Now they pri­mar­ily use “new” and the screen mea­sure­ment to dis­tin­guish be­tween mod­els — not that those mea­sures are a one-off. The sis­ter ranges like ipad Mini,

Air and Pro at least give us a sense of the dif­fer­en­ti­a­tion. Granted, this may be a niche gripe of tech writ­ers.

Pre­sum­ably, all cus­tomers want to know is “is it the lat­est?” and “what does it do?”. So, with that in mind, the lat­est is the “new ipad

9.7 inch” – a slim, at­trac­tive and ca­pa­ble de­vice that “by any other name would smell as sweet”.

Ap­ple tells us that 9.7 inches is their best-sell­ing de­vice size. It’s cer­tainly a con­ve­nient one. Any­thing big­ger tends to start feel­ing like a lap­top without the key­board. Any­thing smaller flirts with the ph­ablet des­ig­na­tion. This is the “Goldilocks” of sizes, that lets you browse, write and watch me­dia (by your­self) com­fort­ably. The screen it­self of­fers “retina dis­play”, with a res­o­lu­tion of 2 048 x 1 536 (or

264 ppi). It has rear and front cam­era — with the lat­ter ca­pa­ble of 720p video for Face­time HD.

“Un­der the hood”, it has a 64-bit A9 chip pro­ces­sor which seems to han­dle even graphics-heavy or gam­ing apps smoothly and com­fort­ably, and the in­stalled op­er­at­ing sys­tem is IOS 10 with Siri-func­tion­al­ity.

The bat­tery prom­ises up to 10 hours of life so you can leave the charger be­hind on an av­er­age work day. To date, there are more than 1m ipad-spe­cific apps now in the app store.

It is avail­able in both Wi-fionly and Wi-fi + cel­lu­lar mod­els, and with stor­age of 32 GB or 128 GB. The en­try-level 32 GB Wi-fi ver­sion will set you back R5,499, while the top-of-therange 128 GB with cel­lu­lar model re­tails for around R9,499.

Though that’s not a tiny price tag (for tablets in gen­eral), it’s much more con­sumer-friendly than the ipad Pro pric­ing — which is aimed at the pro­fes­sional de­signer and cre­ative mar­ket. The start­ing prices for new ipad Pro

be­gin at R10,999.

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