Apple iPad 2

The iPad is back and its time for round 2! We review the Apple iPad 2 Tablet PC and answer the question to wether this is a simple hardware revision or the ultimate upgrade!

By Chris Messenger | Published 16/08/2012

The Good

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33% thinner than the original iPad

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Front facing camera enables facetime

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Biggest selection of applications

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Recently reduced due to release of ipad 3

The Bad

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No support for Adobe flash

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1024x768 not ideal for HD video

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Can only load content through iTunes

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Always a new device round the corner...

Introduction

In the world of movies, a sequel is an improvement on the original only in very rare cases, however, in the world of technology, it happens all the time. In the case of Apple its almost always a given. We take a look at the iPad 2 and discuss what’s great and what’s no so great about it...

 

The Specs

To put the following section into perspective: HTC’s top range Tablet PCs don’t get much higher than a 32 GB hard drive. The iPad 2 boasts a top capacity of 64GB. Though, to be fair, the iPad 2 does offer only 512MB of RAM against the usual 1GB. The standard 1GHz processor applies.

 

Running MAC IOS 4, the iPad 2 is one of the most advanced portable computers the world has ever seen. It easily connects with Wi Fi, Bluetooth and 3G, providing a far swifter connection than almost anything else out there and can be regularly upgraded to ensure maximum performance at all times.

 

Of course, the iPad’s major selling point is the screen. At 9.7 inches, the iPad screen is easily bigger than 99% of Tablet computers out there and, with a resolution of 768 x 1024 pixels; it’s also a good deal better. This is the Tablet computer to get if you’re worried about not being able to see what’s going on with the smaller, some might say ‘Game Boy esque’ screens of other Tablets.

 

 

The Price

The iPad 2 was £399 when this review was first written. Since then, it has dropped in price to around £329, which is a far better deal. It’s still not cheap, but it now represents far better value.

 

At 9.7 inches, the iPad screen is easily bigger than 99% of Tablet computers out there and, with a resolution of 768 x 1024 pixels; it’s also a good deal better.

The Performance

From its incredible display to the 65,000 apps to choose from (many of which are free), the iPad 2 is capable of doing almost anything you want it to do.

 

The front-facing camera makes video calls that much easier and the picture quality leaves most competing Tablets in the dust. The iPad 2 is also 33% thinner than its predecessor, making it a little lighter and that little bit sleeker.

 

The iPad 2 is capable of much more than your average Tablet PC. In fact, it is so good that it almost warrants the enormous price tag. Almost.

 

Although Apple have made a big deal about the iPad 2 being 33% thinner, the iPad 2 is still a lot larger than its competitors. Weighing in at a gargantuan 607 g, this is a computer that is not anything like as portable as, say an HTC Flier or Blackberry Playbook. It is a big computer, which makes it far less commuter-friendly than the bespoke models.

 

In addition, as with most Apple products, it fails to support some key PC systems, principally Adobe Flash, a product required by a lot of online video content to make said content viewable. This can cause a lot of problems when the user is online.

 

The biggest drawback, however, is the price. It’s not even a good idea to print it on here. Suffice to say that it is high, very high indeed. 

 

What Other Users Say

Of the 155 reviews posted on Amazon.co.uk, 129 awarded 5/5 or 4/5 scores. This is very high praise indeed, as Amazon’s user base represents a pretty broad cross section of society.

 

Although Apple have made a big deal about the iPad 2 being 33% thinner, the iPad 2 is still a lot larger than its competitors.

‘David’ (5/5) wrote “If, like me, you enjoy keeping up with the news and catching up with missed TV programmes then apps like BBC iPlayer, Sky news for iPad, and the (currently free) Channel 4oD are obvious choices and are very impressive on the iPad”. While ‘James Wilson’ (5/5) wrote “We used it on holiday and when there was WiFi you could get all the free view TV channels live. You can also download films to watch. You can get your daily paper in complete edition. During the Olympics they gave every sport that was being televised which no TV set did”.

 

Of the (few) negative reviews posted, ‘Peter Smith’ (1/5) contributed by far the most detailed. He wrote that “Is it just me, or is the iPad a triumph of marketing and hype over usability - and over usefulness, in fact?” Judging from the other reviews, we’re inclined to say, ‘yeah, it is just you’. 

 

Our Verdict

There can be little doubt that, at least in terms of performance and reliability; the iPad 2 is one of the best Tablet computers around. As the old adage goes: ‘you get what you pay for’, and with the iPad 2, you’ll be paying through the nose. The single biggest off-putting factor with the iPad and, by extension, nearly all Apple products, is the price. It is simply beyond the grasp of the average consumer and, although the product is undeniably worth the asking price, it cannot be considered good value on those grounds alone.

 

A McLaren F1 will set you back about a million quid, by way of a ‘for instance’. It might be the best car ever conceived, but its up to you if you think its worth it.

 

 

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Tags: Apple iPad 2 Tablet PC Review, Tablet PC Review

 

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