While the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus have managed to gain a whole lot of attention both before and after their release, there was plenty of speculation to go around about the California based Apple Event this week. Most of us managed to guess what was on the agenda for a release, but now we know for sure.
The iPad Air 2 is probably the biggest news, making it the most important tablet release from Apple for awhile. A close second is the iPad Mini 3, followed by the new Retina update of the iMac’s display.
Tech Specs: iPad Air 2
The iPad Air 2 comes in three standard styles: silver, gold and space gray. They are rather wide, with the customary rounded edges we have come to expect from the product. It is the slimmest tablet from Apple yet, at 0.24 inches, and weighing only 0.96 lbs.
A 9.6″ Retina display makes it much slightly larger than the latest Nexus 9 release from Android. That isn’t much of a surprise, since the iPhone 6 Plus shows Apple is trying to compete on the whole bigger-screens issue since other brands have been seeing so much success with their own. It holds an impressive 2048 x 1536 resolution, at 264 ppi. That is one area where the Nexus 9 has them beat, somewhat.
Under the hood, the iPad Air 2 runs on a A8X. 64-bit processing chip, and an M8 motion coprocessor. Like all Apple products, they refuse to provide a microSD compatible slot. Instead, you have to shell out for a 16GB ($499), 64GB($599), or 128GB ($699) WIFI version. That has to be the most annoying aspect of going with Apple. Just in case that wasn’t expensive enough, you have to pay more for the WIFI+Cellular tablet, which is $29 more for each capacity.
There are the usual two camera, with 8 MP for the rear, 1.2 MP for the front. Nothing seems to have really been improved or changed there.
All tablets come with the iTouch identification feature.
As you can see, there isn’t a lot to say here. Which is depressing, because as was mentioned before, this is a big release for the company. The iPad Air 2 doesn’t seem to do much except slightly enhance a couple of features and add a high resolution Retina display. Which is alright, but certainly nothing that keeps to the tradition of innovation and excellence we have come to expect from Apple.
Tech Specs: iPad Mini 3
If you find the iPad Air 2 disappointing, however, just wait until you see the iPad Mini 3. It isn’t even worth it to list the technical specs for it. They changed nothing, except that they added the iTouch. That is literally it…they added the fingerprint sensor to last year’s iPad Mini 2, and kind of showed it at the end of the iPad Air 2 presentation at the event.
Why did they even bother to release a third in the line, in the first place? For that matter, why did they release a new iPad Air when the changes were so lackluster? Couldn’t they have waited until they had something more exciting to present? Or add in a couple new enhancements?
It is true that the iPhone 5 and iPhone 6 were not that far apart in functions, or even hardware. But there was enough to justify a new release in the line, and the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus have still made waves (albeit, sometimes for the wrong reasons thanks to the bending scandal). But the iPad Mini 3 is so pointless that it is actually pretty offensive.
Don’t believe me? It is the same iPad Mini as before, with the frankly unnecessary iTouch, but it costs $399 – $599. You are paying exorbitant prices for last year’s model that is still on the market. Not cool, Apple.
Tech Specs: iMac
Again, not much of a change here. It is an iMac, but with a 27″ screen with 5k Retina. It has a 2560 x 1440 resolution, putting it on par with the iPad Air 2 (pretty much).
It is a good computer, with a 3.2 – 3.4 Ghz processor, depending on the model, and 8 GB of RAM. The new version has a full 1 TB drive (all computers should have this now, in my opinion), and a NVIDIA GeForce GT 755M CPU.
Basically, the iMac justifies its existence just fine, but it shows the same kind of pattern. Only a few of the stats above are any different than the iMac before.
This Apple Event should have been named More Of The Same. It is actually a little confusing, why they bothered to hold an event for this set of release, to begin with. Or why they would try and sell the iPad Mini 3 when it is just the iPad Mini 2.