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iPad 3 Features, Rumours and Release Date [UPDATED]

[ 17 ] Posted by on February 10, 2012

iPad 3 features

Yeah yeah yeah, this is yet another round up of possible iPad 3 features to sink your teeth in to. Truth be told, these sort of round ups are completely miss and hit and with our track record, around 50% right. At any rate, people searching online for iPad 3 features will be left with a whole lotta’ mixed opinions, and also hopes of features which quite simply won’t be in the iPad, ever. Alas, then, we have to admit that some of the features below probably fit that bill but don’t be disheartened by this, as some of the iPad 3 features we’ve listed are awesome.

Before you read down the list below though let’s take a minute to talk about the iPad’s history. Initial talks of a tablet from Apple began in around January 2010 after leaks surfaced online surrounding a possible tablet with iPhone and iPod Touch capabilities. In the build up to this products unveiling, one of the key areas which people really wanted clarifying was what the products name was going to be. iSlate? iTablet? iPad?, these were all good predictions and especially the last one, which proved to be true. In April 2010 Apple unveiled their first iPad to the world and with the huge success of the iPhone and continued growth for the iPod Touch media analysts around the world predicted massive growth for this tablet, as well as market share. This proved to true and in March 2011 Apple released the iPad 2, an update to the original iPad, which was consistent with Apple’s previous time gaps between product launches.

iPad 3 features

Currently, the iPad 2 is Apple’s latest and flagship tablet in their portfolio, which holds the majority market share in the tablet market. This isn’t to say however that some tablet competitors such as Android offerings aren’t as good, it is just that Apple’s brand is far more sought after in certain countries around the world when compared to Motorola’s, or Asus’s. Without further ado then, the iPad 3 will be released in 2012 and is set to be a significant upgrade over the iPad 2, considering the iPad 2 wasn’t exactly a huge leap from the original iPad. Have a read through the list below to see what we think will be the next features in the iPad 3. You know you want to.

Retina display

The display is what makes the iPad a usable product, period. So why is it that Apple didn’t include a higher resolution in the iPad 2? Well that’s because they wanted to leave one feature everybody would die for in the iPad 3. A semi-retina or even qHD display in the iPad 3 would mean crisper apps, crisper zooming and more importantly for us, a genuine reason to upgrade from an iPad 2. This isn’t an iPad 3 feature we want due to the iPad 2’s display being bad (far from it) but because 1080p content from Youtube would look awesome. And amazing. And everything in between. Check out our coverage of the Korea Times stating that the iPad 3 display will be immense.

Probability? 9/10

Capacitive, multitouch home button

Oh Apple, your home button is the least technologically advanced part of your whole mobile device line up. In hardware form, the home button passes as an app switcher and can be used to harness accessibility options such as voice over, page zoom and black on white backgrounds, but we want more and specifically, we want the option to be able to navigate the iPad 3 without having to smudge up the beautiful glass display. Now Apple being Apple, this feature if incorporated would almost certainly have more functionality than simple navigation, however you can never ask for too much.

Probability? 6/10 

Far better speakers

I’m saying this as a technology blogger here; the iPad 2’s speakers aren’t great, and it only takes one Youtube clip playback on the HP TouchPad to hear this. Currently in the latest generation of iPad the speakers are adequate for short time framed video clips and maybe even a movie in bed whilst everything else is quiet, however for a true and decent multimedia device the speakers have to be more powerful. Sorry Apple. Note to Apple: I’ll even settle for a selectable virtual surround sound option.

Probability? 6/10

More speed, better performance

The iPad 2 is one of the quickest tablet’s I’ve ever used. Now this may be down to iOS, and that the multitasking actually just pauses apps, however even under heavy mobile browsing usage everything is incredibly fluid. It seems very hard to image anything better than this, but as apps become more demanding on system resources, processors will have to be updated to compensate for this. As for the next processor, we reckon’ a 1.4GHz dual-core A6 chip is in order, with a higher level of dedicated graphics to run demanding games like a boss.

Probability? 10/10

A bigger battery capacity

If you take a note from our iPad 3 feature just above this one then you’ll see why this feature is 100% brought to you from the future as correct. With increased performance comes a decrease in battery life, it’s just science. To compensate for this, Apple doesn’t like to make things bigger physically, so it would be amazing to think that they could shrink the current battery down even more and offer more charge at the same time, and we think they will. Decreasing the battery size will also pave way for our iPad 3 feature below this one.

Probability? 10/10

An even thinner design

Apple got trumped on thickness by Samsung around 4 days after the iPad 2 was unveiled, however in reviews, Samsung’s tablet measured around the same (Galaxy Tab 10.1 for reference). This time then Apple won’t be taking any chances and will probably reduce the thickness of their device further, however we don’t like the sound of this (amazingly). To us, the iPad 2 is as thin as it really needs to be and to go a bit further, we’re all for more features than paper specifications. If Apple reads this, then please understand that i’d rather have more out of the box connectivity options than a thinner design.

Probability? 8/10

An all glass back

The iPhone 4 was a huge jump in terms of design compared to previous generation iPhone’s, and the iPad 3 may very well follow this. An all glass back would make the iPad 3 incredibly special looking, especially when you consider that currently 50% of the iPad 2 is glass. Now, the unibody design currently employed in Apple’s iPad is a fool proof design offering awesome rigidness, so a glass back whilst pretty isn’t entirely practical, hence our low probability rating below.

Probability? 3/10

Camera Flash

Holy smokes Batman, a camera flash! Now that would be great huh?. Well whilst the iPad 2 doesn’t have a camera flash, the iPad 3 most probably will. At the very least, Apple won’t significantly upgrade the camera on the iPad 3 from the iPad 2’s in terms of image quality, so a flash would be a welcome but minimal addition. Thanks in advance for this feature Apple *thumbs up*.

Probability? 9/10

Embedded sim card

Choosing a wireless carrier to operate your 3G iPad 2 can herald a fair bit of research when it comes to grabbing a sim card, however Apple’s iPad 3 may very well do away with one problem; inserting your sim card in to the iPad. We covered previously that the iPhone 5 may feature a sim-free design, and the iPad 3 may do too.

Probability? 3/10

iPad 3 release date

The release date of the iPad 3 is currently unknown officially and will not be known until Apple calls an event, which will definitely be in March this year as to follow on from Apple’s previous time line with products.

Summing up

iPhone thumbs up

The iPad 3 features listed above are more from our heart than from our heads. Amongst them all, we’d love to see the iPad become a more capable media device out of the box with better speakers. We’d love the iPad 3 to have a higher resolution display. We’d love to see app developers given massive opportunities with a far faster graphics capable processor, and most of all we’d love for all of this to not have a serious impact on battery life. Overall is this too much to ask for? Is Apple’s iPad 3 going to be a significant upgrade over the iPad 2? I think so. Apple has a habit of upgrading products minimally such as the iPhone 3GS from the 3G, and the iPad 2 from the original iPad. The iPad 3 could very well be the iPhone 4 of Apple’s tablet portfolio, where it leaps ahead and offers consumers a real upgrade.

Contrary to the above though things could go completely the other way, and I for one might have got this all wrong. I mean, was the iPad 2 a significant upgrade to 99% of consumers over the original iPad? If it was (do leave a comment on that, below), Apple’s iPad 3 could very well be the ‘iPad 2S’; an iPad 2, only faster. I really hope that this isn’t the case in 2012 though, and to second the paragraph above surrounding significant hardware improvements, if the iPad 3 does happen to be the product which ticks the majority of the boxes above, I might give one away. On that note, stay tuned.

Also, be sure to check out our iPhone 5 features list for 2012.

PS: Digging this story, news or review? Let us know! Comments open.

About Jakk: Jakk Ogden is the founder of Technology Blogged. 25, with a love for good writing, you'll find Jakk playing 'Drag Racing' on his Nexus 5 and rocking a pair of Grado headphones. If you love technology, be sure to subscribe to his feed for unique editorials. View author profile.

Comments (17)

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  1. Sam says:

    Simply a fantastic write up, Jakk.

    In reply to your question: For me personally the iPad 2 was not a significant upgrade when sat next to the original iPad, however it was an upgrade none-the-less. Less has always been more with Apple but i’ve learnt to live with that.

    Some of the The iPad 3 features you’ve whacked in above are great; The capacitive home button would be cool, a camera flash ideal for dark lit rooms, and a better display hugely rewarding to view.

    • Jakk says:

      @Sam thanks mate.

      So you agree with me that it wasn’t an overly significant upgrade? Interesting. Maybe we’ll definitely find some of the enhanced features listed above then in the iPad 3. Glad you enjoyed the write up!

    • Yoshi says:

      I still have an original iPad, simply because the iPad 2 didn’t offer anything new I wanted. I’ll be waiting for number 3, thanks, although I got a HP TouchPad in the fire sale and that’s pretty neat.

  2. iPad 2 owner says:

    Isn’t the iPad 3 going to invisible?

  3. Rich Noble says:

    One thing i’ve never understood is the need for people to bash iPad’s over connectivity (not referring to your article, or comments here) but everybody seems to love taking a leaf out of the connectivity book. Why no SD card slot? Why no USB port? Well i’ll tell you why; It’s because iPad’s sell without them, so there is no need to add them. What is the point in increasing product cost?

  4. Great list overall. A camera flash would be of particular interest to me personally in the iPad 3.

  5. Graham says:

    @Technology Blogged. After reading your Edifier Sound 2 Go review a while back, I so wanted the iPad 2 to finally get a USB port. When it didn’t I lost all faith in Apple and am looking for a better tablet offering, what do you recommend please?

  6. MX Mans says:

    An SD card slot would be nice.

  7. iPad sucks says:

    Personally I don’t see the appeal to Apple’s products, especially the iPad, which journalists seem to worship when without its app store, it’d be a boring piece of shit.

  8. Very good subject. I’ve discovered a lot something totally new below. Keep going.

  9. Marc says:

    Everytime Apple comes to the market with a new (or updated) product, everybody gets amazed with the new features, but probably one of the most commented subjects is always related to the design of the product. Let’s wait and see what Apple will present to us in the new iPad 3!! Great post!!!

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