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For iPad 2, h-e-e-e-r-r-r-r-r-e-e-e-e’s Steve!

Yes, Steve Jobs, still on medical leave, made a surprise showing at this morning’s unveiling of the iPad 2 in San Francisco! Attendees gave him a standing ovation. Jobs described successes with sales in the iBooks platform, as well as introducing the iPad 2.

Today, on Dr. Seuss’s birthday (he would have been 107 years young), 16 of the top 20 books are his!

CNET, which only very very seldomly disappoints, presents a collection of articles today on the iPad 2 launch. I am just getting around to reading them (one of my friends in high tech surprised me one day by telling me that I DO have “a life.”). :-) Nowadays, I have an even RICHER life than at THAT time! I DID however, read the Technical Specifications on Apple’s pages and the Features page, even though I have not yet watched the Keynote.

OK, what did those helpful folks at CNET have to say? Marguerite Reardon described the debut and salient features of the iPad 2. “Under the hood,” or MAYBE “under the Smart Covers,” (in many colors of polyurethane or leather) of the iPad 2 (to be sold on March 11 in the U.S.) a dual core processor that about doubles CPU performance and makes the graphics speed 9 times faster, while using the same power as the current iPad. Of course the iPad 2 is thinner and lighter than its predecessor and has two cameras, a 720p camera for FaceTime and a “VGA-quality” camera for video and stills. Oh, there is also HDMI video out to allow mirroring on a larger screen (for an additional $39, and it works with all apps), for all of you teachers out there who requested it!

CNET says:

“… the device is 9.5 inches high, 7.3 inches wide and 0.34 inches deep. And it weighs just 1.33 pounds. It comes in three storage sizes for both the Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi + 3G models: 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB.”

The 3G versions will work on EITHER AT&T’s OR Verizon’s network. (That is NOT a Boolean “OR.”) Prices start at $499, and the original iPad in 16GB Wi-Fi only configuration is now for sale at $399.

Steve Jobs is quoted by CNET:

“It’s in Apple’s DNA that technology alone is not enough,” he said during the presentation. “It’s technology married with liberal arts, humanities that yields us the result that makes our heart sing. And nowhere is that more true than in these post-PC devices. And a lot of folks in this tablet market are rushing in and looking at this as the next PC.”

I blogged about such things in January of 2010, and after some of the deficiencies were remedied in software VERY rapidly, it seemed that the only thing missing was a camera (or two! :-) ). Amazingly, there are still a few industry pundits who “don’t seem to get it” about iPad (even though singing its praises). Most of the others were swayed by the financial performance – in the first fiscal quarter of 2011, the iPad (not even the iPad 2) generated $4.61 billion for Apple, which is about 17.2% of its revenues. An analyst believes that Apple could sell 27.36 million iPads in fiscal 2011.

CNET has what was a live blog about the event, telling how things unfolded (or you can watch the Keynote). Maggie Reardon presents a “just the facts” discussion in an FAQ about iPad 2. Scott Stein wrote about iOS 4.3, which is coming March 11, and Donald Bell described a “hands-on” with iPad 2. (Oh, the device comes in either black or white, for you Yins and Yangs out there [the names of our cats, BTW].)

Well, you and I have a lot of reading (and video viewing) yet to do about iPad 2.

“But I have promises to keep,

And miles to go before I sleep,

And miles to go before I sleep.”

(Note added March 6, 2011: I saw this somewhat disturbing report about the resolution of the camera on the iPad 2. Photographers among you know how BIG (MB) large, high-resolution images can become and how SLOWLY they can travel over networks, a point that is sometimes LOST on the general public. If the report is true, the design may be to prevent the “network-crushing” effect of millions of customers trying to send very large (MB) images, which most people would merely perceive as “slow” or “very slow” or “stuck” and not know why. I have not done the calculation to see whether this might be the case. Or, the quality of the camera may just reflect cost considerations….)

-Bill at

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