O'Grady's PowerPage » iPad

Rumor: Apple to discontinue iPad mini in favor of larger 12-inch “iPad Pro” model

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, November 4th, 2014, 10:00
Category: Hardware, iPad, Rumor

It’s just a rumor, but it’s got some decent sources behind it.

Per AppleInsider and Taiwan’s Economic Daily News, a rumor out of East Asia on Monday claims Apple is looking to wind down iPad mini production in favor of a 12-inch tablet, a response to flagging sales and growing consumer interest in larger-screened devices.

Citing sources in Apple’s supply chain, the Economic Daily News reports the company is looking to discontinue iPad mini sales when the tablet lineup is refreshed next year and will instead concentrate on production of a new 12-inch format being called “iPad Pro.”

The shift in tablet strategy is said to be in reply to a shifting smartphone market, which has seen consumers gravitate toward devices with screens larger than 5 inches when measured diagonally. Apple itself has seen unexpectedly high demand for the new 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus, the company’s first “phablet” handset.

Also cited as a catalyst for change is increasingly aggressive competition in the tablet sector, with competitors like Samsung slowly nibbling away at Apple’s dominant marketshare. For the most recent fourth fiscal quarter of 2014, Apple moved 12.3 million iPads, down 17 percent from 14.1 million year-over-year.

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Rumor: Apple designing larger, thinner “iPad Pro” tablet for education market

Posted by:
Date: Monday, November 3rd, 2014, 10:23
Category: Hardware, iPad, Rumor

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The new iPads are out.

That doesn’t stop the rumor mill speculating about the next generation of the tablets.

Per AppleInsider and Macotakara, the latest rumblings surrounding the anticipated release of a larger, education-focused iPad next year suggest the device may touch down with Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3 in its crosshairs, sporting a super-slim form factor, enhanced audio, and a slightly more compact 12.2-inch display.

Macotakara has cited its own sources as saying that iPad maker is specifically designing the device to play into the same markets as Microsoft’s Surface Pro 3, but adds that the company may choose to employ a slightly more compact 12.2-inch display than the 12.9-inch option that is widely rumored and also used by the Surface Pro 3.

The overall design of the iPad Pro itself is said to largely resemble a jumbo iPad 2 with two additional speakers (and an additional microphone) located at the top of the device, which “might” make the iPad Pro “capable of supporting stereo audio.” It reportedly won’t be as thin as the 6.1mm iPad Air 2, but will still be as slim as an iPhone, measuring somewhere between the iPhone 6′s 6.9mm and the iPhone 6 Pro’s 7.1mm at its thickest point.

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IHS iSuppli completes iPad Air 2 teardown, estimates slightly higher manufacturing and component costs

Posted by:
Date: Wednesday, October 29th, 2014, 15:21
Category: Finance, Hardware, iPad

As is customary, the new iPad Air has been torn down to get an approximate fix on his much its component pieces retailed for.

The answer for the iPad Air 2 is about US$275.

Per MacRumors and Re/code, research firm IHS iSuppli has torn down the new iPad Air 2 in an attempt to estimate Apple’s component costs for the device. According to IHS iSuppli’s estimates, the 16 GB iPad Air 2 costs Apple roughly US$275 to build, just one dollar more than last year’s iPad Air.

The report unsurprisingly points out that Apple benefits from stronger profit margins as users move to higher capacity models, with Apple paying only about US$50 more for 128 GB of storage compared to the base 16 GB configuration while charging users US$200 for the upgrade. Still, Apple’s move to eliminate the 32 GB option and slide the 64 GB and 128 GB models down US$100 has slightly eroded Apple’s profit margins at the top end.

The latest report from the research firm IHS, shows that the base model of the iPad Air 2, the 16-GB Wi-Fi version, which sells for a price of US$499, costs $275 to build, exactly one dollar higher than the previous base model. The top-end model, the 128-GB LTE version costs which sells for US$829, costs US$358 to manufacture.

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Displaymate performs Display Technology Shoot Out tests on iPad Air 2, iPad mini 3, finds both impressive and disappointing results

Posted by:
Date: Monday, October 27th, 2014, 16:58
Category: Hardware, iPad, News

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The tests have been run, the results have come in and the answer may be a bit of a downer for iPad 3 mini owners.

Over on displaymate.com, Raymond Soneira has just pitted Apple’s recently released iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3 displays against each other in almost every category imaginable. The tests and results, which can be found here, run the tablets through criteria such as power efficiency, viewing angles, screen brightness in high ambient lighting, absolute color accuracy, etc.

The tests found that the iPad Air 2′s new anti-reflection coating on its glass cover helps cut ambient light by about 3:1 over most other tablets and smartphones (including the previous iPads), and about 2:1 over all of the very best competing Tablets and Smartphones (including the new iPhone 6). The tests recorded a 62 percent decrease in reflected light glare compared to the previous iPads (Apple claims 56 percent) and agree with Apple’s claim that the iPad Air 2 is “the least reflective display of any tablet in the world”.

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AT&T confirms Apple SIM card lock, says customers will need to buy new SIM card to change carriers

Posted by:
Date: Monday, October 27th, 2014, 10:11
Category: Hardware, iPad, News, wireless

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There may be increased competition and good deals to be had in the wireless markets, but the major carriers will still try to lock you in…

Per Re/code, wireless carrier AT&T has apparently taken advantage in the change to the SIM card found in the new iPad, which apparently allows customers to designate which wireless carrier they’d like to use it with, by essentially locking its customers in to the service, requiring the customer to purchase an entirely new SIM card to change their provider.

AT&T spokesman Mark Siegel confirmed to Re/code that customers who use the Apple SIM on AT&T will need another SIM card to switch carriers, but stressed that the device itself remains unlocked.

“With us you can change carriers with this iPad any time you want,” he said. “It is an unlocked device. … All [you] have to do is switch out the SIM in the device so it works on another carrier.”

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iFixit completes teardown of iPad 2 Air, posts discoveries

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, October 23rd, 2014, 08:54
Category: Hardware, iPad, News

The cool cats at iFixit have torn down the iPad 2 Air and found some interesting stuff inside.

Per iFixit and AppleInsider, the new tablet comes with a 9.7-inch laminated touch panel, A8X SoC, 8MP rear-facing camera, 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Touch ID fingerprint reader. The shell was also redesigned, seeing the deletion of the orientation lock/mute button and minor aesthetic modifications to the speaker grille and volume control buttons.

The teardown finally put a number on battery capacity, with the Air 2 sporting a 27.62 watt hour, 7,340mAh dual-cell unit, down from last year’s 32.9 watt-hour configuration. According to Apple, that will get you about 10 hours of continuous use per charge, or 9 hours on the Wi-Fi + Cellular model.

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Rumor: A8X processors allegedly feature three cores, 2GB of RAM

Posted by:
Date: Tuesday, October 21st, 2014, 17:47
Category: Hardware, iPad, Processors, Rumor, Uncategorized

While Apple has yet to reveal the exact specifications of its A8X processor, it seems to feature some sexy tech traits. Per AppleInsider and Gizmobic, a new benchmark purports to show the horsepower of the CPU, revealing a triple-core processor with 2 gigabytes of RAM.

The purported details on the A8X chip claimed to show a new “iPad5,4″ model. Based on Apple’s IPSW files available to developers, that model would be a LTE-capable iPad Air 2.

A separate test focused on RAM speed also appears to show that the iPad Air 2 has a full 2 gigabytes of RAM. In contrast, the A8 CPU found in the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus is a dual-core processor with 1 gigabyte of RAM.

The benchmarks published represent an out-of-date testing tool not optimized for assessing the performance of Apple’s latest hardware, which may explain why the iPad Air 2 performs poorly in some of the tests.

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Apple replies to negative commentary over iPad sales, states that market “isn’t saturated”

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Date: Tuesday, October 21st, 2014, 11:09
Category: Finance, iPad, News

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Apple posted great numbers across the board in yesterday’s fourth quarter financial statement, but there may be concerns about the iPad’s growth.

Per AppleInsider, Apple’s chief executive Tim Cook explained why he remains “very bullish” about iPads de spite the tablet’s sales not maintaining the growth rates of iPhones or Macs in every region.

In the September quarter, Apple sold 12.3M iPads, versus 14.1M in the year ago quarter. While lower than last year, iPad sales were slightly above Wall Street’s expectations. Apple continues to sell more iPads each month than the combined tablet sales of the rest of the top five tablet vendors, globally: Samsung, Asus, Lenovo and Acer

Addressing iPad sales in response to an analyst’s question, Cook stated, “I know that there’s a lot of negative commentary in the market but I have a little different perspective on it.

“Instead of looking at it every 90 days, if you back up and look at it, we’ve sold 237 million in just over four years. That’s about twice the number of iPhones we sold in the first four years.

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Apple posts full video of October 16th iPad, Mac media event

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, October 16th, 2014, 15:22
Category: Hardware, iPad, News

It’s the last thing of the day.

Per MacRumors, following a veritable cornucopia of announcements, Apple has posted the full video of today’s iPad and Mac event on its website.

The video should also be made available later this afternoon on the Apple Keynotes podcast, which can be found on the iTunes Store.

As always, let us know what you make of the new stuff in the comments.

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Apple announces iPad mini 3, adds Touch ID fingerprint sensor, gold color option

Posted by:
Date: Thursday, October 16th, 2014, 14:31
Category: Hardware, iPad, iPad mini, News

You might just get everything you want from the new iPad mini 3.

Per AppleInsider, the tablet will include a Touch ID fingerprint sensor and new gold color option while starting at a US$399 price point.

The company has also expanded the iPad mini lineup by continuing to offer the first-generation model, lacking a Retina display, for US$249. And occupying the US$299 space will be the iPad mini 2.

The entry-level iPad mini 3 will feature 16-gigabytes of storage for US$399. Upgrading storage capacity in the iPad mini 3 will run US$499 for 64 gigabytes, while 128 gigabytes will cost US$599. In addition, a new gold color option will join silver and space gray, and LTE-capable models carry a US$130 premium.

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