Every company with a tablet on the market wants its product to be the “iPad Killer.” Unfortunately for its competitors, Apple has a tendency of killing its own products and bringing them back to life with improvements that leapfrog the last benchmark. In its nearly regular refresh — the fourth in two years — to the iPad, Apple is making some small changes. Visually, nothing changes as the device holds steady at the same dimensions and identical Retina display that was introduced on the iPad 3. The processor got a slight boost to a 1.3GHz A6X dual-core and the front-facing camera gets clearer with a 1.3-megapixel lens. The charging port is also changed out for the new Lightning Connector. Take a look at the full side-by-side spec breakdown below.
It doesn’t seem like Apple will be chasing too many current iPad owners with the iPad 4. The upgrades are fairly minimal from what the 3rd generation offered and likely won’t convert iPad 3 owners. More than likely, the iPad 4’s market will be for folks that are still without a tablet in their possession or for people who passed on the last two refreshes and still own the original iPad or the iPad 2. Assuming the price for the iPad 3 drops similarly to how the iPad 2 did (currently $400 in the Apple Store), it may become an attractive entry level tablet for people that prefer the Apple brand. The iPad 4 feels like it got pushed out to market to make the Lightning connector the universal offering in Apple’s mobile line. It may still be an option for hold outs, but iPad 3 owners may be wise to skip this generation.
(*A quick note: We use the words iPad 3 and iPad 4 to mean 3rd generation and 4th generation iPad.)