iPad 3 with Retina display and quad core A5X

 iPad 3 with Retina display and quad core A5X

So the details have been revealed and all the rumours, speculation and leaks can end, at least for a few months. Apple have announced the iPad 3 at their special event this evening and to all intents and purposes it looks like  a solid update.

The headlines are:

Retina Display

iPad 3 with Retina display and quad core A5X

The iPad 3 features an updated display with a pretty staggering 2048*1536 pixels. Basically 4 times the resolution of the iPad 2 display. To give you some idea of the sharpness, it has over a million more pixels than a full HD display, and it’s only 9.7″.

However at 264 pixels per inche it doesn’t actually meet the 300 PPI benchmark that Apple themselves previously set as the yardstick for being Retina resolution.


The iPad 3 will be powered by a new A5X processor with 2 CPU cores and 4 GPU cores. Apple are bragging that it has 3 times the performance of Tegra 3, although it’s not quite clear at this stage how they’re measuring this. Regardless, it’ll need that performance to power its display.


Apple have taken the universally praised camera from the iPhone 4S and stuck it in the iPad 3. This should be a serious upgrade as I know from personal experience that the current unit in the iPad 2 is a piece of junk. I’m not sure if you’ll be wanting to take proper photos with your tablet but it’s definitely a nice addition. The iPad 3 also gains 1080P video recording at 30 frames per second and stabilisation.

Physical Dimensions & Battery Life

Unfortunately, the iPad 3 has had to increase slightly in size relative to its predecessor in order to fit in all that goodness. It’s now 9.4mm thick (up by 0.6mm) and weighs 652g (up from 600g). The increases are likely to accommodate more juice as the claim that battery life is unchanged over the iPad 2, despite the spec bump.


Less relevant to us Brits perhaps, but Apple has added LTE capability to the iPad 3 for those in the US on AT&T and Verizon. Personally I’d stick with the cheaper WiFi versions and use my phone for WiFi tethering.

Price and availability

Despite the fairly significant spec bumps, Apple have managed to maintain the iPad 2 price levels, starting at £399 for the 16GB WiFi only model. The 32GB model comes in at £479 and the 64GB at £559. Adding 3G/4G adds another £100 onto each model.


So overall, nothing unexpected but a very solid update. As an iPad 2 owner I don’t think there’s enough to make me upgrade but iPad 1 owners are probably salivating. And I can’t wait to see that screen in action!

Let us know what you think in the comments, and whether or not you’ll be buying one.


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  • Anonymous

    Title is a bit misleading. It’s Quad Core GPU, not CPU..

  • Dave Samworth

    Any clues as to the release date?

  • dragonball

    this is a dual core, not quad core cpu.
    very misleading

  • Wxwluvwxw

    dude its not called the iPad 3
    its called NEW IPAD

    some research first please!

  • To be fair here… we’ve all assumed it’s iPad three as in the talk from Tim Cook the video mentions the “3rd Generation iPad”, though all the slideware says NEW iPad.
    Not sure we can really put a stake in the ground here….
    My supposition is that t’s simply going to be called the iPad going forward, much like we have the MacBook Pro and Air. They don’t receive nomenclatures to their model, they simply ARE iMacs, MacBook Pro’s or MacBook Air’s, etc ….
    I expect we’ll see the iPhone evolve this way in the future too

  • Patch

    I think this is a great product and can only help other manufactures step up which give us the consumer more option and choice….

    I have a original iPad and dose all I want in a tablet for quick Brownings and killing time on the sofa… When adding iCloud into the mix with AirPlay I’m a happy bunny…

  • Enigma

    It’s now 9.4mm thick (up by 6mm) < are you sure the last one was 3.4mm thick?

    • Anonymous

      Woops! Corrected :-)

  • I have to agree as an iPad 2 owner I am not overly excited about the new one but I would have been queuing of they had released a new Mini iPad as I have seen the light after using a Tab 7.7 for the last month. I really want a smaller more portable device. Oh well as Tim Cook said at the end there is plenty more too come in 2012 I can only hope. You make it I will be queuing up for it.

  • Glo

    Would like to have apple have some kind of refund or exchange system so that those who have the older versions of iPads can get some compensation to off set some monetary relief and get new iPads in the future. Some of us absolutely want the new ones but they are not offerdable with them coming out so soon. Please help!

  • Snarling Rabbit

    Whats the fuss about? its thicker, sharper, heavier and the battery lasts the same. You just get the feeling if these guys can’t light your fire who will? Technology has truly plateaued!

  • iPhone Fan

    To be honest it doesn’t excite me that much in itself, although I’m sure the screen will look fantastic. What does excite me is iPhoto which looks brilliant for photo editing on the move. The only problem is I have the original iPad and iPhoto isn’t compatible with it. I’m guessing it’s because of the processor and RAM limitations. Is iPhoto itself enough to make me upgrade? I’d love to but realistically it’s not enough and I’ll stick with what I’ve got.