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iPad 4 Review

The iPad 4 is here, even though no one was really anticipating it, especially not those who were enjoying their cutting edge third-generation iPads. But now they have been forced into obscurity by the new device no one asked for. But while this may not have been a great business move, the fact of the matter is the new iPad is here to stay. So is it any good?

The answer is yes, but hardly in a groundbreaking way. More of an update of the iPad 3 than a completely new model, most of the changes are on the inside which is why you could be forgiven for failing to notice anything different when you look at it.

There are no innovations here. The novelty of an Apple tablet that the original iPad brought along is gone and as much as we love the Retina display, it has become a standard for new products now. Visually it is identical to its predecessor, complete with the same dimensions of 186 x 241 x 9.4mm and weight of 652g. There is only one tiny change on the outside and that is the new Lightning connector.

All the changes are on the inside and the good news is that the hardware is an improvement. The iPad 4 runs on an A6X chip, which is said to be twice as good as the A5 chip in the iPad 3 and this much could be true as it does run noticeably faster than its previous incarnation. Graphics have also improved with a smoother look and higher frame rate. This will be especially good news for gamers as the graphics are a lot more accommodating to the demanding graphics of games and we could see some special developments later on in this field. This improvement is also noticeable when it comes to running demanding apps, especially where music and videos are involved.

But this seems to be all there is to it. Admittedly the iPad 4 is superior to its predecessor but not by a particularly large margin. Apart from the Lightning connector and a faster processor, there really isn’t anything else that sets this aside from the iPad 3. If you own neither then this is the superior model, although it is probably not worth the extra price yet.

If you do own the iPad 3 then you have absolutely nothing to worry about. It remains a cutting edge device and the update is little more than a tweaked version of it. If however you desperately want to upgrade to an iPad with a lightning connector then you could opt for this but it hardly seems necessarily.

The iPad 4 is ultimately a great device, if a little unnecessary and it may have been better for Apple if they had held back for another six months and used that time to truly innovate it and make it a must-have product. As it is, it remains a might-have product that you will not regret if you do buy it. Having said that, the iPad Mini is also available and you should decide what you want from an iPad before committing either way.

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