Apple unveiled its latest iPad last week to the usual media fanfare and, as many expected, the new features were incremental improvements that look set to consolidate Apple’s dominance of the tablet market.
A higher definition “retina” screen, quad-core processor and 4G LTE compatibility are the key upgrades, although the latter will have little use in the UK until next year, when the high-speed LTE network is likely to roll out.
During the much-anticipated presentation, Apple CEO Tim Cook defied speculation by referring to the third-generation iPad as “the new iPad”, rather than labelling it iPad 3 or iPad HD.
What impact will the “new iPad” have on the market?
Ian Fogg, head of mobile at IHS Screen Digest, believes magazines and newspapers look set to be one of the biggest beneficiaries, because “it’s print quality resolution and typography on a digital device”.
The more powerful processor could also have implications for the gaming market, with Apple announcing exclusive titles for the device.
Fogg said the announcement “is not great timing for the just launched PlayStation Vita handheld”, but although it would cause disruption in the industry, this would be “tempered by a higher iPad price”.
Chris Lawson, content sales and marketing director, Guardian News & Media
So as the Apple PR machine goes into action once more, the reduction in price of the iPad 2 will ensure that we can reach an even larger number of progressive Guardian readers. The net effect will be more people sampling and subscribing to the Guardian iPad edition
The “new” and improved iPad with superior graphics will provide another platform to showcase our photography and design. No doubt our dev team are already working on how to take advantage and I’m sure our standalone Eyewitness app will also do well.
The most significant announcement I believe is the market lead Apple has managed to build. Increasingly, it looks like a two-horse race with Amazon Fire. The challenge is where you focus your development and marketing investment. Both devices prove to be incredibly popular with our readers and it will be interesting to see how this plays out.
Jamie Jouning, digital director, Condé Nast Digital UK
Anything that presents digital content in better ways to consumers is undoubtedly a step in the right direction. For the Condé Nast stable of digital products, this can only be good news – an enhanced visual experience on the iPad elevating our website and magazine content to a new creative high.
Any hardware improvements in speed and battery life are also certain to drive take-up, and more tablets in the marketplace means more opportunity to deliver our digital content to an ever-larger audience.
The huge anticipation for modest, incremental performance improvements speaks volumes as to Apple’s current hold on the tablet marketplace, and certainly appears to vindicate our decision to publish four of our magazines – Wired, GQ, Vanity Fair and Vogue (from September) – on the Apple Newsstand on a monthly basis.
Clare Baker, marketing director, Absolute Radio
Apple launches for entertainment media owners have become as important to report on as any key red-carpet event in the calendar.
Content generators and brands need to have a focus on post-PC devices, utilising the screen quality and the high-speed, long-term evolution as the perfect way for consumers to interact with them. We were the first masthead website in the UK to become HTML5 compatible, which enables our users to view content on these devices. There are many media owners out there that have still not tackled this.
We see yesterday’s announcement positively, as our visualised audio content will be able to be viewed in great high quality. We have an iPad-specific app designed to promote and offer added-value to our ‘Rock N Roll Football’ afternoon show with Ian Wright, Russ Williams and Jim Proudfoot.
The inevitable rapid growth of Apple’s devices is another positive for advertisers and publishers utilising iAds. As one of the launch partners of the iAd, we feel this continues to deliver a high-quality ad format and the new iPad features will only enhance this.
Kieran Bourke, head of mobile, Mobext
Apple’s strapline, “It will change how you see and do just about everything” sums up the “new iPad” pretty neatly. It offers a significant improvement in display resolution, four times that of the previous iPad and a million pixels more than your standard HD TV screen. For advertisers this is good news, with a palette of three million pixels, subtle differences in colour will be easier to display.
Car manufacturers will find it easier to convey the deep richness of a particular body paint colour within their tablet advertising. Equally, the new iPad, will bring tablet audio visual to life, the A5X chip playing a key part, allowing advertisers to deliver HD quality video to promote their products and services.
I was disappointed that the rumour of the inclusion of Haptic Technology did not materialise. This technology from Senseg is the most exciting development I have seen in a long time. Let’s hope the 4G beta trials in London go well and we can catch up with our US cousins and enjoy super-fast 4G LTE connectivity on our new iPads sooner than later
Douglas McDonald, head of mobile, TMW
Essentially, Apple has significantly upgraded the technical specs of the iPad device with the launch of the “new iPad”. This has meant that, in many ways, it hasn’t managed to launch the product in a way that is markedly different from the tech specs focus of other tablet and mobile device launches.
It’s faster, it has a better screen, but there wasn’t anything particularly groundbreaking that won’t be able to be in non-Apple devices in coming months. The focus, therefore, had to shift to the software that can run on the device.
The launch, however, is a lesson to other device manufacturers in how to make a device about much more about what it does for consumers, rather than concentrate on what it is.
Many commentators will bemoan the lack of rumoured features such as an advanced haptic screen or any yet-to-be-invented “Apple Magic” as elements of the new iPad. Many “haters” will also point out that Siri is not on the device, which is, perhaps, an admission that the software is not yet really ready for prime time.
No doubt the Quad Core GPU (but dual-core CPU) will be huge for gaming and that was on display in spades. Otherwise, I thought it was interesting that the other demos were more about “create” than “consume”, which, I think marks Apple’s stake in the ground in positioning the device as the standard in a post-PC world.
Whether consumers will respond to that, as opposed to simply using it for watching video and social networking, remains to be seen.