When Apple unveiled the third version of the iPad in March, it did so on the back of a huge level of interest and rumour. Pre-launch interest hit levels which most brands could only dream about; according to Experian Hitwise
, in the week running up to the event, 'iPad 3' accounted for one in every 2,000 internet searches.
Ahead of the launch, all of the mainstream tech and gadget titles published thousands of words of informed rumour, alongside speculation that turned out to be way off. Blogs and social media channels were buzzing, and dedicated sites appeared focusing purely on what the new iPad might offer.
The speculation is all part of the fun, and Apple's ability to keep at least some interesting features secret generally adds to the anticipation, whatever product they are announcing. This time round, one of the main talking points was what the product was going to be called, with most bets going on the 'iPad 3' or iPad HD' -- as it turned out, just about everyone was wrong.
So what did we get? Among the big news was the High Definition 9.7 inch retina display. At 3.1 million pixels it's better quality than the HD TVs many of us now have at home. A new quad-core processor chip has been added to help take advantage of this display quality, and the back-mounted camera now offers 5mp resolution and 1080p HD recording capability.
As widely predicted, the new iPad will work with the emerging 4G LTE mobile networks, although in the UK we'll have to wait a while longer to take advantage as the operators are yet to bring 4G online.
On the software front, Apple launched a powerful new photo editing app -- iPhoto, which they are pushing as the default tool for photo editing, sharing and organising. Apple TV also received some attention and now offers 1080p HD quality and with the 'Genius' function now included will recommend movies and programmes for you. Voice dictation has also been included for the first time, but not Siri -- Apple's much-discussed personal assistant didn't find a place on the new iPad this time.
And the name? It's simply the 'new iPad' -- on the face of it, hardly a worth a mention compared to all the other elements of the launch. But anyone tuning in to the live blogs covering the event could have been forgiven for thinking that was the main headline. 75 minutes into Mashable's coverage
, for instance, almost all the social chatter and questions coming through to their team were asking about the name.
It places Apple in a incredible position, backed up by the sales forecasts -- the Telegraph was one of the papers to publish
research predicting units sales of 65 million in 2012 alone. Great for Apple whatever they call their products, but pretty scary for the competition.Karl Doody is managing director of 27stars, a web, iPhone, iPad and Android developer.