Why Apple Have Failed Its British iPad Fans
The latest Apple iPad was showcased in San Francisco, California recently and is due for launch at 8am local time on 16th March; but the problem with this new Apple iPad though is that it will only partially work for customers in the UK. Around the world, the anticipation that the announcement of the new iPad brings means that loyal Apple customers will once again be queuing up at their nearest “Customer Experience” in order to get their hand on the latest creation from the mindset of the late Steve Jobs. Has Apple been too quick to develop an iPad that is almost useless in the UK? By taking a look under the hood of the new Apple iPad, it might be better sticking with the iPad2 for now......
Updated: Apple Wi-Fi..... or Wi-Fail
Since originally publishing this article on Infobarrel, the connectivity of the new Apple iPad has be found to be flawaed across many parts of the world not matching the frequencies of the US 4G network. In the US though Apple have been quietly replacing new iPad units that have been failing another of their connections. Wi-Fi only units are starting to show symptoms including refusal of connections to a hub, low signal despite being right next to a router and other wi-fi connection issues.
If anyone has bought a new iPad with a wi-fi problem, it sounds like a visit back to the Apple Customer Experience you purchased it from.
Of course; other individuals have found other uses and tests for their new iPad
UK 4G or UK LTE? Does not matter until 2-0-1-3
The 3rd Generation iPad comes with connectivity to the latest 4th Generation mobile technology called LTE.. This is a problem for mobile data users in the UK though, because at the moment as although there are trials being undertaken in Bristol and Cornwall, there is no commitment yet from anyone but T-Mobile and Orange (under the brand Everything Everywhere) to rolling this out; the mobile bandwidth to support the service has not even been auctioned off by the communications authorities yet. Even if the UK does get it's 1800Mhz LTE or 4G network in place in 2012, there is no guarantee that the hardware within the new Apple iPad will be the compatible. Apple have confirmed that the new iPad will offer LTE connectivity on the 700MHz and 2100Mhz wavebands which is those used as standard in the US; however in the UK the services of the 4G will use the 1800MHz frequency which so far has not been mentioned by anyone at Apple.
This concern has already been realised in Australia where the Australian Competition and Consumer Comission (ACCC) found Apple of being in violation of consumer law as a result Apple are now offering refunds to misled customers and the Advertising Standards Authority in the UK investigating same.
So will the new Apple iPad work on UK mobile networks?
Yes, the iPad will also be supporting 3G mobile broadband connections. Apple have said that the new iPad will connect to the latest HSPA+ networks, currently operated by Three in the UK at a theoretical 21MB connection; and DC-HSPA which makes 2 connections to the HSPA+ network in order to offer a theoretical 42MB connection. This will offer a reasonable service for all but the most intensive of HD Video streaming, this is still far slower than any 4G offering.
It should also be remembered that the new iPad will have the obligatory Wi-Fi for those that are not necessarily going to be using a mobile broadband network for any length of time
But You Will Need a Bigger Data Allowance
Although the UK might not be able to deal with the Apple iPad 4G connection it will still enjoy the iTunes new data limits. At the moment, if you use your iPad1 or iPad2 on the mobile phone network then iTunes limits you to downloading 20MB of data, preserving your mobile phone bill. With the introduction of the new iPad, this will be increased to 50MB to enjoy a new display which unless you are on a high data tariff can be shocking for your mobile phone bill. Some mobile data plans limit you to 500Mb or 1Gb of data before additional charges are charged; a quick bit of maths shows that this is just 10 or 20 such downloads, a discretely unannounced phone bill bombshell waiting to happen.
And You Will Need More Storage
With the upgrade to a better HD display will come the bigger applications and the new retina display (which we come to in a while) will mean that more of the movies will be downloaded in high definition. It might mean that some users will be fast approaching the low 16GB storage capacity on the new iPad units much quicker than they think. High Definition movies can be 2GB or larger depending on how they have been encoded; not much room for anything else then!
What is GOOD about the new iPad?
Apple iPad Will Not Waste Space on Siri
Commonsense will say that the Siri might have been a good inclusion on the iPhone and to be able to dictate your memoires on a small device such as a mobile phone is as good as the old adage of dictating letters for your secretary on a dictaphone. Thankfully Apple have not decided to make everyone look like idiots by forcing Siri upon the iPad and hopefully the Apple development team have realised that the marketing aim is to provide the user with a need to buy an iPad AND an iPhone; not thinking their new iPad users will be constantly lifting a 10 inch device to their mouth to find the nearest takeaway.
The new Apple iPad will however come with a variant of dictation software, this will allow you to type text messages and e-mails hands free but is unlikely to let your Apple iPad utter a barrage of (alleged) expletives when you ask it the way to the corner shop.
New iPad; New Camera
New iPad users will however be able to lift their new devices high into the sky to take photographs on the iPad’s new 5 megapixel camera. It might seem strange to think that a viewscreen as large as the iPad display will be useful for that, but with the retina display included the ability to take a picture and edit it all on the same device can only really be appealing.
The iPad screen WILL Put Others to Shame
There are some decent developments announced for the new iPad. The screen that is being shipped will doube the iPad 2 offering and pack in a massive pixel rate of 2048 x 1536. This is at the top end of the laptop and tablet market and will even put many of your computer monitors to shame; along with the upgrading of the 720p HD Ready to 1080p Full HD capabilities. A lot of this is thanks to the Apple development of QXGA (Quad Extended Graphics Array) for the new iPad and prior to this, the 4:3 ratio screen was a preserve of predominantly CRT monitors because of their price.
The 9.7 inch Retina Display on the new Apple iPad is a nod to the iPhone range with it’s own 3.5 inch Retina unit. This is a technology that will mean you can not even see the block pixilation of a traditional screen because they are so small that images will appear rounded and smooth. Apple offer an example of this on the Apple website.
As a result of the upgrade in the screen, the new Apple iPad will be packing in a quad-core graphics processor to cope with the additional power it will need.
But the iPad Video Output Puts Itself to Shame
Sorry – Apple have not decided that you can harness the power of video output to your big screen TV or projector. I understand completely that Apple want their iPad products to be an intensive “user experience” but to force users into spending out further to show their iPad content by uploading it or buying something to connect the iPad via Bluetooth; for the sake of even a micro HDMI output, I think that there will be some who consider whether the upgrade cost is worth it.
.... and Apple Purists will be disappointed
Is there a reason why we have not called this the iPad 3? Well firstly because Apple are not calling it the iPad 3, simply an iPad (3rd Generation), which makes you wonder if Apple actually have an iPad 3 or iPad HD or something equally intelligent in the making. It might simply be though that Apple have not implemented some of the expected upgrades that one would expect; just like with the iPhone 4S compared to the “iPhone 5”:
- There is no mention of the A6 processor; although apple have upgraded the iPad from an A5 to an A5X CPU, far faster than an AMD Tegra, but still only offering a 1Ghz clock.
- A continued lack of expansion slot limits the iPad to the same 64GB maximum memory of the iPad 2. (That can be as little as 12 HD Movies!)
Would I Upgrade to a New Apple iPad?
I am not going to upgrade anything to the new iPad just yet. Users of the original iPad (1) devices will find that their Apple user experience will increase to excuse the expense but if I wanted to upgrade an iPad 2 I would be waiting for something concrete to say that I as a user in the UK will benefit from the developments in the data connectivity. With all the rumours in the Apple work at the moment I would be questioning whether I would rather have a laptop or Apple MacBook and be teaming that with the likely iPad Mini that i think is going to be announced at Apple’s June conference events.
That being said; I can not afford to upgrade to anything at the moment....