As expected, Apple announced the third generation of its popular tablet device featuring a high-resolution retina display and 4G LTE connectivity at its press event today at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco.
The new iPad’s display has a resolution of 2048 by 1,536 pixels, which adds up to more than 3.1 million pixels and offers better color saturation than previous models. Inside, it has Apple’s quad-core A5X processor. The new iPad maintains its 10-hour battery life despite these internal changes that will require more power.
The next-generation iPad also gets an improved rear camera with a 5 megapixel sensor and many of the camera features present in the iPhone 4S, including auto face detection and exposure and focus lock and the ability to record 1080p HD video.
Voice dictation also makes it to the iPad though full-fledged Siri and its capability to complete tasks like creating calendar events and reminders and searching the internet are not present.
Global 4G LTE also makes it into the new iPad. In the US, Apple will offer additional models for Verizon’s 4G CDMA network.
The new iPad will be available on March 16 in the US and 11 other countries with online pre-orders beginning today. Pricing remains the same with the Wi-Fi-only models coming in at $499 for 16GB, $599 for 32GB, and $699 for 64GB and the Wi-Fi + 3G/4G models pegged at $629, $729 and $829 respectively for the same capacities. As with the iPad 2, both black and white models will be available.
Apple will continue to sell the 16GB iPad 2, dropping the price to $399 for the Wi-Fi model (down from $499) and to $529 for the Wi-Fi + 3G model (down from $629).