If you are thinking of splashing out on the iPad 4 (more commonly referred to as the iPad with retina display) and you just happen to hang on Apple’s every word, you’d probably believe without question the catchy strap-line of “It’s brilliant. In every sense of the word”. If you’re more the inquisitive type who wants to know a bit more about the fourth iteration of Apple’s arguably most famous gadget before parting with a minimum of $499 for the 16GB WiFi version, read on.
How much is it?
For everyone but the most devoted (and wealthiest) of Apple fans, that’s likely to be one of the very questions. We’ve already said that the most basic 16GB WiFi version comes in at $499 (for black or white models). At the upper end of the scale, for the 64GB WiFi and Cellular version, you’re looking at a hefty $829. Whether you opt for the cheapest or the dearest (or any of the multiple price points in between), you’ll get not only the iPad for your money, but also a Lightening to USB cable and a USB Power Adapter You’ll also enjoy free engraving (handy if you’re buying as a gift or you just like your gadgets to be engraved with your nickname). The iPad ships with a one-year limited warranty and 90-day telephone support. You can purchase an extended warranty which is useful if you’re accident-prone or plan to share your iPad with your kids.
What can you do with it?
“Pretty much anything you want” would be the easy answer, but let’s elaborate somewhat. As we all know, the iPads (and other tablets) get their legs via various apps. The iPad 4 does not disappoint. It’s ready to go straight out of the box with pre-installed apps such as Safari, Mail, iTunes, Newsstand, Camera, Calendar, and Game Centre. Of course, the real fun to be had is courtesy of the 275,000 additional apps waiting for you to discover in the App Store. Whether you’re a social media junky, a lifelong learner, an inner foodie, or a sports fan, it’s likely that you’ll find an app to indulge your passions. Many are free; many more are not. It can be tempting to splash out on new apps every day, but unless you want a nasty shock when you check your bank statement, we’d recommend checking out the reviews for the various apps before you hit that purchase button.
Let’s get technical
The full specs for the iPad 4 are available on Apple’s official site. There are way too many intricate details to list here, but let’s take a look at some of the main highlights. Unless you are a true geek (which is not a bad thing), the main things you’ll likely be interested in are the size, weight, and processing power of your intended new gadget. The chip is a dual-core A6X with quad-core graphics (which can be roughly translated as “fast”). The much touted retina display equates to an almost 10 inches (9.7 to be exact) diagonal LED-backlit multi-touch display complete with oleophobic coating (which can be very loosely translated as fingerprint-resistant). The WiFi version weighs in at 1.44 pounds; the cellular version at 1.46 pounds, both of which are considerably more than the iPhone, but less than, say a small baby, or a few books. On both versions of the latest iPad, you can expect to enjoy around 10 hours of continuous surfing, listening to music, or watching video following a full charge.
What about accessories?
We’re quite sure that at least a small portion of Apple’s vast profits rely on you wanting to splash out on iPad accessories. For starters, you’ll be needing a case (a gadget costing a minimum of $499 should always be protected). The iPad Smart Case (in a variety of funky and not-so-funky colors) protects both the front and back of your device, while still managing to retain the thin, light design. It cleverly folds into a stand and even more cleverly automatically wakes the iPad up upon opening (and puts it to sleep again when closed). Anything over and above that is entirely optional, but headphones and keyboards are always fairly popular. An interesting post on the Otterbox Defender case explains what kind of protection you’ll be getting from a top of the line iPad case.
In summary, Apple are probably right when they say the new iPad is brilliant (in every sense of the word). Newcomers to the tablet will probably fare just as well with an earlier version, but it’s a “very” decent bit of kit to get your paws on nonetheless. No matter how brilliant these devices may be, the iPad Mini will still need repair from time to time. If you ever find a need for an iPad Mini screen repair let us know!
Linda Forshaw is a Business Information Systems graduate from Lancaster University in the UK. A frequent contributor to Degree Jungle.com, she is a full time writer and blogger specializing in education, social media, and entrepreneurship. Contact her on Twitter @seelindaplay