We always knew something was brewing between Apple and Verizon in the past few weeks. What we didn’t realize that it was something to do with the iPad. Apple has now announced on their website that the largest carrier in the US shall now start selling the iPad on their stores starting the 28th of this month. October 28 will also see the iPad hitting AT&T stores.
Quite as one may have expected, the Verizon store will only stock the three variants of the Wi-Fi-only iPad. While these devices can be purchased independently, the devices will also come together with a Verizon MiFi 2200 Intelligent Mobile Hotspot unit to compensate for the lack of 3G connectivity. The 16GB, 32GB and 64GB versions of the iPad will sell for $629.99, $729.99 and $829.99 (all including the MiFi device). The devices are expected to be available at $499.99, $599.99 and $699.99 without the Mi-Fi unit.
Data availability is not too generous though. The media statement only talks about a $20 a month plan that will give users up to 1GB of data.
Update: In addition to the $20 plan, Verizon has now said that it will also offer $35 and $50 monthly plans that will provide data of 3GB and 5GB respectively. Do note that this discounted rate will only be available to those customers who buy the iPad and Verizon MiFi as a bundle. The plans will not be offered even to those customers who already own a Mi-Fi and choose to only buy a Wi-Fi iPad.
The iPad is a great way to watch movies and television shows. But the absence of powerful speakers on the iPad has meant that you may miss out on the TV-experience while watching these videos on the iPad. There are a good number of iPad speaker docks available in the market. But the recently unveiled SMK PadDock is one that shows a lot of promise.
The SMK PadDock iPad speaker dock comes with all the usual aesthetics that Apple products are known for and mimics the look and feel of an iMac. The dock comes with a cradle grip that can rotate 360 degrees to accomodate all possible orientations of the screen – All this while keeping the iPad speakers in place. Additionally, the PadDock also includes a USB support and supports computer syncing.
The PadDock is definitely an impressive piece of hardware and will be available at a price of $100 when it goes on sale on November 1. If you want to be one of the firsts to get hold of this speaker dock, you can pre-order one right away.
You saw this coming, didn’t you? After Apple expanded the retail presence of its popular tablet by bringing it to the Amazon online store and to Target, now word is in that the iPad could be making it to the shelves of the popular American discount store, Wal-Mart. That could be as early as next week. According to reports on MacRumors, the popular chain shall be stocking the iPad in as many as 1000 of their retail outlets with 800 more outlets expected to sell the iPad in time for the holiday shopping season next year.
There is a bit of disappointment though. Users may not be getting any actual discount on the retail price at Wal-Mart. Spy shots that MacRumors has gotten hold of shows that the price of the iPad models are pretty much the same as they are available elsewhere – between $499 and $829. Nevertheless, there is a likelihood for discounts to be made available after the iPad gets some real competition from the Galaxy Tab as well as when the shopping season gets into full flow. Hopefully.
Like a Verizon iPhone, rumors of a mini-iPad too have been doing the rounds for a long time now. With the launch of smaller tablets like Galaxy Tab and Dell Streak, chances of a smaller 7″ iPad launching over the next few months seems increasingly likely.
Now, there are rumors that the new smaller iPad is indeed launching soon and could hit the stores as early as the first quarter of 2011. What’s more, the sources also say that the smaller iPad could come equipped with the highly touted retina display of the recently launched iPhone 4. Additionally, these 7″ iPads are believed to have storage capacities of up to 128GB besides offering a mini-USB port.
While the presence of a mini-USB is pretty likely considering that recent EU regulations mandate the use of such a port for mobile device charging, it is not clear if Apple would actually bring about a 128GB device. While that is not something out of the ordinary, Apple may have rather been expected to have brough such capacity levels to the iPod Touch when it was launched recently. Also, with talks of a cloud-based iTunes being launched, a 128GB device that will subsequently rise product cost seems rather redundant. Don’t you think so?
It has been over six months since the iPad first launched in the US market and it is only natural that the sale numbers are now seeing a dip. Quite expectedly then, Apple has been opening up the sale channels in order to maximize the sale of the tablet computers. Soon after Target announced that the new iPad shall be available on their retail stores from earlier this month, Amazon too has announced that their online store will now start selling the tablet computer.
At present, the 3G enabled versions are not on stock. That leaves the choice between the Wi-Fi versions of the 32GB and 64GB iPad models only. You can check them out now on Amazon by clicking here. Do check them out since the price is the same as the official retail price.
With rumors about the imminent launch of the new iPad 2 doing the rounds, it does not seem entirely justifiable to pit a product that is half-a-year old to a tablet that does not launch until later this year. Nevertheless, assuming that these are the three devices that will see competition during the holiday shopping season this year, here’s a brief rundown on the features and specs. This is NOT a comprehensive review by any means.
Platform : The new iOS 4.2 is likely to be big with the introduction of multitasking functionalities on the iPad. Also, if you also own an Apple TV, the iPad will bring features like AirPlay. On the other hand, the QNX built Blackberry Tablet OS is completely untested at the moment and so there really cannot be a comparison between platforms until we get to know more. HP PalmPad should however be popular among those who are fans of the WebOS.
Screen Dimensions : Is the iPad too big at 9.7″? If so, you should go for a smaller tablet like the Blackberry Playbook that comes with a 7″ screen. The size is significant for a media consumption device like a tablet since users will not only want a screen large enough to view content clearly, but will also need a device small enough for an easy hold.
Processor : Things are still not clear on the HP PalmPad front. The other tablets though will come with a 1GHz processor. The Blackberry PlayBook though is expected to come with a dual core processor that is equipped with hardware acceleration to support Adobe Flash.
Storage Capacity : Apple does not really encourage microSD support. So do not expect to store anything more than the standard 16GB, 32GB and 64GB variations even on the upcoming version. On the other hand, Blackberry Tablet and HP PalmPad are expected to come with 16GB and 32GB variants with support for a microSD slot.
Camera : Now this is a contentious issue right. With FaceTime here, Apple is most definitely going to offer a front-facing camera on the next generation iPad. But is that going to be enough. Blackberry PlayBook is a clear winner here. The device will have a 3-megapixel frontal camera and another 5-megapixel rear facing camera. Expect the camera to be available on the PalmPad, but no idea on whether there would be just one or two.
Connectivity : The iPad cannot tether. But it does have Wi-Fi and 3G variants available. The Blackberry PlayBook on the other hand does not have 3G but can tether to a Blackberry phone besides connecting to Wi-Fi. The PalmPad is expected to have both Wi-Fi and 3G though that is not entirely clear.
What is your choice?
Remember those rumors prior to the launch of the original iPad? People who claimed to be in the know claimed the close resemblance between the iPhone and the iPad. The Ex-President of Google China, Kaifu Lee went on to call the iPad a “big iPhone“.
Looks like those days are back again. From China, incidentally. According to reports on the Shanzai.com, the rumored upcoming 7″ iPad is actually a finished product and there are reportedly five different prototype designs that are in circulation. The sources claim that the mini iPad is closer in look to the iPhone 4 than the original iPad and that it will also include iPhone 4 features like a front and rear facing camera.
I would personally not give much credence to these rumors at the moment. Anyway, rumors are interesting and we will look forward to getting more confirmation on this.
Apple has released a new version of their iWork apps – Numbers, Pages and Keynote that bring with a number of new features including the very important ability to transfer files to and from remote locations. With this new version 1.2 of these applications, users may transfer files to remote servers using MobileMe, iTunes or WebDAV.
In addition to this, the latest version of these apps will also bring with them the ability to export files in a Microsoft Office compatible format. If you are a regular user of these applications, you may be aware that the Pages app on iPad already came with the ability to export files in MS-Word format. The new version will thus also allow users to export Numbers documents in MS-Excel and Keynote files in MS-PowerPoint formats. These applications are also noted to now import documents in these Microsoft Office compatible formats quicker and more reliably.
Check out the Apple App Store for the latest versions of these applications.
Looking to buy an iPad but find the $499 starting price a little too steep? How about a $50 drop? That’s not good enough. But for what it is worth, Apple is now officially putting up refurbished iPads for sale on the Apple Store at a starting price of $449. Refurbished iPads are not exactly second-hand. These are devices that users return before the 30 day return period and these are retested and certified along with a 1 year warranty.
While the refurbished devices are no wonder as good as new, a $449 price point is still a pretty steep price to pay when you know that the device is not genuinely new. Nevertheless, if you are just looking for work to get done, no harm in trying it out. Hit this link to make your purchase.
The two may not be in the same segment of business, but this definitely makes for a good headline. According to Kudo Tsunoda, the manager of Microsoft Game Studios, the preorders for Microsoft’s upcoming camera-based motion controller have been pretty strong – strong enough to “blow away” the sale of iPads. Tsunoda says,
“As far as what we’re looking at for Holiday, this is going to be stuff that’ll blow away any of the sales you’ve seen with iPad… The Xbox 360 is already selling better than the Wii and Sony right now. Kinect’s really just going to boost that to a whole new level.”
For a perspective, Apple sold its 1 millionth iPad 28 days after launch. The 3 millionth purchase came within the first three months. Will Kinect connect with people the same way? That’s a bit of a lottery at the moment, but listening to Tsunoda, investors may demand that it better be the case.