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In Depth: iPad 4 with retina display: what you need to know
When our pals at Tap! magazine looked at the third generation new iPad, they suggested that it might be one to skip: while it was a decent enough device, the next one would be even better. It looks like they were right: the fourth generation iPad, announced today, is significantly faster than its predecessor, and while it's hardly a ground-up reimagining of the entire iPad concept it's still a lovely bit of hardware. So what's new?
The iPad 4 processor is new, and better
Apple's latest iPad comes with its latest processor: an A6X, which Apple says delivers twice the CPU and graphics performance as the A5X. The processor also includes improved image signal processing technology, which should improve the results from the iPad 4's updated 5-megapixel camera. Once again claimed battery life is 10 hours.
The iPad 4 has a Lightning connector
The Dock continues its disappearing act, with the fourth generation iPad dropping it in favor of the smaller, sleeker and considerably less fiddly and annoying Lightning connector.
The iPad 4 does more 4G LTE, including in the UK
The new iPad was supposedly a 4G device, but in the U.K. the Advertising Standards Authority told Apple to stop telling porkies (otherwise known as whoppers to non-British folk): we didn't have a 4G network, and even if we did the new iPad wouldn't have worked on it. The fourth generation iPad, or iPad 4, is a proper 4G device but has support for more LTE 4G bands including Everything Everywhere's band 3 4G LTE.
The iPad 4 has faster Wi-Fi
The fourth generation iPad supports dual-band 802.11n Wi-Fi on the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands, with support for channel bonding to achieve download speeds of up to 150Mbps. The Wi-Fi also supports the older a, b and g WiFi standards.
The iPad 4 is still pretty hefty
Like its predecessor, the iPad 4 is rather heavy: the Wi-Fi only version weighs in at 652g, while the Wi-Fi + Cellular model is 662g. Dimensions are 241.2mm high, 185.7mm wide and 9.4mm deep.
The iPad 4 comes in six different models
As before, there are three storage capacities and both Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi + Cellular models.
The iPad 4 release date is the Nov.2
Like the iPad mini, the iPad 4 can be ordered on Oct. 26 for delivery on Nov. 2. And, 4G-enabled models will ship a few weeks later at the end of November.
The iPad 4 UK price starts at £379, US$499
The Wi-Fi-only iPad 4 starts at £399(US$499, AU$539) for 16GB, £479(US$599, AU$649) for 32GB and £559(US$699, AU$759) for 64GB. The Wi-Fi + Cellular models are £499(US$629, AU$679), £579(US$729, AU$789) and £659(US$829, AU$899) for 16GB, 32GB and 64GB respectively.
Asus Taichi starts to flow in November, pricing gets specifics
Asus's duel-screen tablet/notebook creations, dubbed the Taichi (like the mellow martial art), is set to come out this November.
Asus dropped the news during a New York City event Tuesday, along with revelations about a plethora of Windows 8 devices.
Along with a release date, Asus also revealed the pricing model for a trio of devices. The base unit will run $1,299 (£815 /AU$1266) for a 128GB solid state drive, $1,499 (£940 /AU$1461) for 256GB and $1,599 (£1,003/AU$1,558) for the same space but with an upgraded processor.
Those drives are also non-upgradable.
All the Taichis will feature full 1920 x 1080, 11.6-inch HD screens, on both sides.
Asus has kept the tablets light as well, with each weighing 1.25 kg (about 2.75 pounds) and tapering the profile to 3 millimeters thin.
The two lower priced models each have Intel Core i5-3317U processors. The priciest version gets pumped up with an Intel Core i7-3517U processor.
The three versions also share Intel HD 4000 graphics, 4GB of RAM and two USB 3.0 ports.
Also part of the offerings are a mic and two cameras: a 5MP one with 1080p video recording and a second 720p camera. The battery should last about five hours as well.
With our powers combine...
The Taichi stands out because it's a true blend of a notebook and a tablet. It's not just a tablet with a keyboard port. Users can close it and use it like any other multi-touch screen slate.
They can also open it and use it like a notebook, just with back-to-back screens. The two screens can be used simultaneously for presentations or spaced out movie watching.
The notebook/tablet combo is also well suited to take advantage of Windows 8's touch-friendly operating system.
Rumors previously indicated the Taichi would come out this week to coincide with the new OS's launch, but it looks like we'll have to settle for pricing information.
ASUS didn't give an exact date for the release, other than sometime in November. We'll update the story as we get more information.
Until then, you can check out our hands on review of the Taichi for more details.
New iPad mini brings 4G to Australia
Apple got into a lot of strife in Australia when it marketed the third generation iPad as 4G compatible, despite it not working on local frequencies. The new iPad mini and iPad 4 don't make the same mistake.
The Apple website doesn't yet make a big deal about 4G support in Australia, but during the keynote both Telstra and Optus were name checked as Apple partners for LTE coverage for the new iPads.
Interestingly, Apple has decided to stick with the Wi-Fi + Cellular description for its 4G version, despite the fact it does work with the Australian networks.
iPad nano (SIM)
Those looking to upgrade from an iPad 2 or 3rd generation iPad will need to invest in a new SIM card for the cellular version, with both the iPad with Retina Display and the iPad mini requiring a nano-SIM card to connect, just like the iPhone 5.
Combined with the introduction of a Lightning dock connector, the inclusion of a nano-SIM has obviously helped Apple keep the size and weight of the new tablets to a minimum.
Weighing in at a little under half the weight of a full-sized iPad, it seems that the mission to create a lightweight miniature version of the iPad has been successful, although we'll reserve our full judgement until we've had a more thorough test of it.
Complete Australian pricing
With pricing starting at $369 for the 16GB Wi-Fi only iPad mini, the device is still priced at a premium over the likes of the Nexus 7 from Google, although arguably it does boast a slightly larger screen.
The 32GB Wi-Fi iPad mini will sell for $479, with the 64GB version costing $589. For those keen on the LTE version, 16GB will set you back $509, 32GB will cost $619 and 64GB will hit $729.
Google launches dedicated Windows 8 Search app
The free touch-friendly app, available to download from the Windows Store, will give Windows 8 users an alternative to the default Bing search engine packaged with the new software.
The app will offer easy acces to Google Search without the need to open a web browser, but also opens the door to popular apps like Gmail, Google+, Drive, Calendar and Google Voice.
These portals will open within the app's tabbed browser interface, so it's very much like Google's all-encompassing iOS app in that respect.
Familiar features like one-touch Voice Search, Instant Results and Instant Previews are also on board, so there's little missing from the complete Google experience.
The search giant has been extremely punctual with the launch of its apps and services on rival platforms in recent months.
The company is also preparing to launch its market-leading Chrome web browser for Windows 8.