Earlier today, when everybody turned their attention to California for Apple’s iPad announcement, most of them got exactly what they expected to get. A new iPad with a faster chip, a nicer screen, a camera, and a slight chuckle as they imagined Samsung executives cringing as Apple poked fun at the Galaxy Tab. But photo enthusiasts saw something entirely different.
While in the past Apple’s iPhone camera has always garnered attention and launched a plethora of products meant to take advantage of it, the iPad has stayed somewhere in the periphery of our attentions. We had Photoshop Touch, and more recently a pressure sensitive stylus meant to give Wacom some competition, but the hardware itself never inspired much awe for us – until now.
With integration of a retina display in to the new iPad – which Tim Cook and his friends made very clear was better than anything else on the market, about 200 times – the addition of the iSight camera found on the iPhone 4S, and the ability of “The New iPad” to take 1080P video, the iPad has now fallen squarely in the middle of our radar.
In case you didn’t follow the keynote, the cliffs notes go something like this. The display on the new iPad is absolutely incredible, at a resolution of 2048×1536 on a 9.7inch display, it has earned the right to be called a retina display and touts 1 million more pixels than a standard high definition 1080 display. To go along with the screen we have the new A5X chip, which brings unheard-of graphics performance to the new iPad. And adding the cherry on the tech sundae is the new iSight camera – which isn’t really new, but comes from the iPhone 4S – and the incredible performance it has managed to squeeze out of a very small package.
All of these things together mean that the new iPad isn’t just a faster, sleeker new toy from Apple. The new iPad is now photographer worthy and then some; and I can’t wait to see what companies do to start taking advantage of the tablet’s new-found abilities. I also can’t wait to see what an “iPad Tripod” looks like… or better yet what people will look like using it.