The iPad 2 Review

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Paul Curthoys

Sorry Steve P., but Raketemensch nailed it--this is an Apple device. I expect top quality in all elements, whether I plan to use them or not. As a guess, Apple probably saved $5 by not using the 5MP rear camera from iPhone 4. That's money not well-saved, and if there's a camera in something, I want it to work well when I use it, regardless of how rare or awkward using it might be.

Also, Bbray, I had compared Infinity Blade launch times vs iPad 1 and it is much faster on iPad 2, but that was more exception that the general rule of thumb that I was stating in that part of the review. Still, it's a good point to loop back to--Infinity Blade is probably the most demanding app out there at the moment (can anyone think of another?), so as devs design apps to take advantage of the A5's dual cores, I expect this gap to widen such that we see bigger performance differences between the two iPads.

@Roosch, agreed--AirPlay mirroring would be great. But it wouldn't cost $39, and hardware manufacturers make a mint on accessories. :)

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Steve Paris

Hi Paul, except that you yourself mentioned in your article how awkward using the iPad to shoot anything is (be it stills or video). I think people will try it a couple of times and then give up on it. This device is just not designed for this.

I'm much much more annoyed that the iPod touch's got the same crappy 0.7MP camera. That was uncalled for since, just like the iPhone, it's so much better suited to taking stills than an unwieldy 1.3-pound contraption (it's fantastic for videos though).

I think taking shots with an iPad is a moot point: hardly anyone will do it, whether it has a 5MP or 0.7MP camera. It's quite possible that Apple gambled on this fact and potentially saved themselves hundreds of millions of dollars (considering how many are being sold right now, I think they made the right choice).

Oh, and if you want to be cynical about this, they'll need to give iPad 2 owners a reason to upgrade when they release iPad 3 next year :)

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Paul Curthoys

Can't agree with you there--just because it's awkward to use doesn't mean it's okay for it to suck. But I totally agree with your points on the iPod and on cynicism. The iPad 3 will be touted in its keynote for its magical 10MP camera. Or something :)

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Steve Paris

Hi guess my point is that if you've got a sucky camera, expect it to take sucky shots. Imagine how horrible it would be to have a super MP camera that was extremely hard to use? You'd keep trying to use it because of the amazing lens but get incredibly frustrated because of the crappy nature of the device's design.

But it's my point, and it looks like I'm in the minority here. Maybe that's why they hired you to write the article and not me ;) 

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Raketemensch

The whole point of having the camera isn't that you're going to carry it with you instead of a DSLR or something... That argument's pretty much moot. The point of these "magic" devices is that you have them with you all the time.

I still take pictures with my 3GS, not because they're great photos, but because I have it with me when something cool happens. When one of the kids does something crazy, I don't have to run to find the Lumix, I just launch the camera app and start snapping. That's the theory, but generally I try to snag my wife's iPhone 4, because those candid shots come out great.

The disappointment comes in because these candid ipad shots are going to suck, mostly unnecessarily. In the volume Apple's cranking these things out, how much more would it have cost to include a better camera? $1? $5?

I'm still buying one, but every time I see a cool shot to take with it, there's going to be a twinge of "I wish I had my wife's phone," or "I hope this doesn't come out looking like it was taken with a RAZR." That's a crappy experience to have with an Apple product, and it would've been fairly cheaply avoidable.

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mx5_94

But wasn't there another article in the last day or so that said 70% of iPad 2 buyers were first time iPad owners? If that is the case, the allure of the device is that much greater for these folks. Just think if your VERY first experience was with this device versus the original.

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Steve Paris

I fail to understand the obsession over the low-res camera. It's a tablet. Compared to a camera or a phone, it's huge. And unwieldy. Are you seriously going to tell me that you'll be using this as a camera?

Unlikely. If anything, you'll be using the camera for casual shots like taking a photo of a book cover to remember what to order later, or a funny street sign. But who's going to be the proud geek who'll be holding a 10" camera in public? :)

What annoys me most actually (and this is a little off-topic), is Apple's insistence that iMovie can only work on the iPad 2. I may change my mind when I end up holding an iPad 2 myself, but I personally don't believe that people will be doing much shooting with this device. It's more than likely that they'll be using an iPhone or iPod touch and transferring the footage to the iPad 2 for editing. Therefore, why haven't they made iMovie compatible with the iPad 1? We know it works since some clever people managed to install it (it's an ugly workaround), so the specs can handle it. I think that's a bad move and I hope they'll rectify it soon: after all if the iPod touch is only 256MB of RAM can handle it, why not the iPad 1?

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@Roosch

Surprisingly enough - looking at my 'normal' behaviour whenever Apple launches a new product - I'm still not sure if I will buy the iPad2 when it arrives in The Netherlands, March 25th. Since I own an iPad1, I might even skip this version to see what no. 3 will bring.
And is it only me or is it strange mirroring is only possible with a connector? Since Apple is pushing AirPlay so bad, I would expect to be able to mirror wireless with at least 720p.

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Bbray6744

I agree about the cameras. But after I bought one I have to strongly disagree with this. The iPad 2 is much faster than my original iPad. Loading apps is much faster. Want an awesome example? Load infinity blade. Huge difference in time...not 1-1.5 seconds. YouTube a comparison. The screen is brighter, it's much much faster. Maybe evolutionary...but a giant evolutionary step.

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maclover1

Thanks for your comment. I bought the first G iPad also and I tried to give myself every excuse not to buy the iPad 2. Needless to say after reading reviews and seeing the iPad 2 in person. I had to have one and I am glad I bought it. It is something to marvel at. The thinness, speed and the ability to video chat made it worth the upgrade for me. The camera for taking stills could be better. But I am not going to be using it as a point and shoot device. Also at least the video camera captures decent video.

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tomdoty

Enjoyed your article about the iPad2. But I would not be buying the it as a camera, so the low res and the grain would not even enter into my buying decision. If that one of the areas Apple need to cut cost to keep the iPad2 at last years prices, then I'm all for it.

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eman297

OMG i can't wait till they come to canada

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