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Topic: iPad 3 Vs. iPad 4

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Old 11-11-2012, 01:24 AM
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iPad 3 Vs. iPad 4

Hi guys,

Just wondering if any of you have made a detail comparison for those 2 iPads side by side?

If so, is it worth upgrading to iPad 4 or should I wait?
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Old 11-11-2012, 07:56 AM
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A side-by-side comparison between the two would be pointless as they look exactly the same. The iPad 4 has two aspects that are different from the iPad 3: the use of the new thunderbolt connector and the A6X SoC inside. Other than that, the iPad 3 and iPad 4 are exactly the same. There is no point in buying an iPad 4 if you currently have an iPad 3. The upgrade to the iPad 4 would be incremental and you wouldn't really notice the difference. The A6X is able to load apps a little faster than the A5X in the iPad 3 but that is it. You should get an iPad 4 only if you have an iPad 1 or an iPad 2 (or no iPad at all). I don't recommend getting an iPad 4 if you already have an iPad 3.



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Old 11-12-2012, 08:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kornchild2002 View Post
The iPad 4 has two aspects that are different from the iPad 3: the use of the new thunderbolt connector and the A6X SoC inside. Other than that, the iPad 3 and iPad 4 are exactly the same.
Well, no. The iPad 4 also has a significantly better front-facing camera than the iPad 3 --- 0.3 megapixel versus 1.2 megapixel, and the new camera can shoot 720p video.

Quote:
There is no point in buying an iPad 4 if you currently have an iPad 3. The upgrade to the iPad 4 would be incremental and you wouldn't really notice the difference. The A6X is able to load apps a little faster than the A5X in the iPad 3 but that is it.
In most cases you're probably right, but it does depend on the user. The new processor also adds quad-core graphics and is a significant improvement for anyone who plays graphics-intensive games.

But for everyone else, it's probably not worth the upgrade.



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Old 11-13-2012, 04:42 PM
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Eh, the upgrade to the front facing camera is technically there and FaceTime calling should be better but I wonder how many people actually have the bandwidth to support a full 720p FaceTime session at home especially considering the average internet speeds in the U.S. (6.7 Mbps overall with many states out West averaging 1 Mbps).

The iPad 3 also has quad-core graphics in it, the SoC configuration of the A6X in the iPad 4 is a bit faster. Apple upgraded both the CPU and GPU in the A6X SoC. However, it is currently limited to loading apps a little faster as games aren't really taking advantage of it. Not only that but, by the time games really start to take advantage of it (and there is a clear difference between the iPad 3 and iPad 4), the iPad 5 will be on the horizon. The whole shorter upgrade cycle of the iPad really didn't allow the A5X to be fully taken advantage of and any games in development now aren't going to start over again simply because of the A6X.

The upgrades to the iPad 4, even for a gamer (and I don't know of any true gamer that would spend money on a tablet just to play games), aren't worth it if one already has an iPad 3. The upgrade is substantial going from an iPad or iPad 2 but not an iPad 3 (just like the upgrades to the iPhone 5 aren't that big compared to the iPhone 4S).



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Old 11-14-2012, 11:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kornchild2002 View Post
Eh, the upgrade to the front facing camera is technically there and FaceTime calling should be better but I wonder how many people actually have the bandwidth to support a full 720p FaceTime session at home especially considering the average internet speeds in the U.S. (6.7 Mbps overall with many states out West averaging 1 Mbps).
Exactly. FaceTime HD requires around 1mbps bandwidth, and keep in mind that if you're the one with the FaceTime HD camera, that's upstream bandwidth -- something that most users actually don't have on their home networks.

Ironically, you'd probably have better success using FaceTime HD over an LTE connection than on most Wi-Fi networks.

Quote:
The iPad 3 also has quad-core graphics in it, the SoC configuration of the A6X in the iPad 4 is a bit faster. Apple upgraded both the CPU and GPU in the A6X SoC. However, it is currently limited to loading apps a little faster as games aren't really taking advantage of it. Not only that but, by the time games really start to take advantage of it (and there is a clear difference between the iPad 3 and iPad 4), the iPad 5 will be on the horizon.
Actually, the iPad 4 comes in at a much higher geekbench score than prior iPad models -- about 3X faster. However, you're completely correct that nothing is taking advantage of that yet, and in our own reviews and testing the current performance increase was basically nil for all practical intents and purposes. Games like Infinity Blade II ran at the same performance on pretty much all recent iPad models -- even going back to the iPad 2.

The thing is that there was basically no practical speed increase between the iPad 2 and the third-generation iPad, even on a theoretical level. The A5X was necessary in the third-gen iPad for the sole purpose of being able to drive the much higher-resolution Retina Display. Now, the iPad mini enters with a non-Retina Display and the same A5 chip as the iPad 2 and therefore performs as well as either the iPad 2 or third-generation iPad.

The iPad 4 should be up to three times faster in theory, but as already stated, until apps start taking advantage of it, the differences are basically non-existent.

Ultimately, if you have a third-generation iPad, purchasing the new fourth-generation is essentially two very small steps forward -- a FaceTime HD camera and a theoretical performance increase that makes no difference in the real world -- and actually one possibly significant step backward in terms of accessory compatibility courtesy of the new Lightning connector.



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Old 11-14-2012, 08:37 PM
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I forgot that would have to be 1Mbps upload speeds. I have 3Mbps right now but I am paying for a 60Mbps download speed service. From what I have read in a short amount of time, the average upload speed in the U.S. is hovering around 0.5Mbps. I then looked a little deeper and many services offering 10-15Mbps download speeds are only offering 0.3-0.5Mbps upload rates. It looks like you have to get up into the 20Mbps range before seeing a 1Mbps upload speed.

The use of the A5 in the iPad mini also brings up another interesting point: are developers going to take the time to really take advantage of the A6X in the iPad 4 when three iPads (two current) use the A5 SoC (and the iPad 3 using the same CPU in the A5X as in the A5)? The iPad mini kind solidifies the position of the A5 for at least another year. I doubt developers are going to start coming out with three versions of their apps: one for the iPad mini/2, one for the iPad 3, and one for the iPad 4. It would make more sense to code for the iPad 3 and then scale down for the iPad mini/iPad 2.

The advantages of the iPad 4 are there on paper but I think it will be a while before we see anything really using them. Its funny that Apple has taken a different approach with the iPad 4 than with the iPhone 5. With the iPad 4, they upgraded their flagship tablet in only 7 months just to keep up with the specs (let's face it, the iPad 4 is nothing more than a spec bump). However, with the A6 in the iPhone 5 (although it is faster than the A5), it isn't as fast as other SoCs used in Android handsets. There are Android smartphones that are more powerful than the iPhone 5 on paper. Apple brushed off the A6 having "only" a dual-core CPU yet they felt the need to update the iPad 4 in such a short amount of time just to keep up with everyone else.



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Old 12-06-2012, 11:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kornchild2002 View Post
Eh, the upgrade to the front facing camera is technically there and FaceTime calling should be better but I wonder how many people actually have the bandwidth to support a full 720p FaceTime session at home especially considering the average internet speeds in the U.S. (6.7 Mbps overall with many states out West averaging 1 Mbps).

The iPad 3 also has quad-core graphics in it, the SoC configuration of the A6X in the iPad 4 is a bit faster. Apple upgraded both the CPU and GPU in the A6X SoC. However, it is currently limited to loading apps a little faster as games aren't really taking advantage of it. Not only that but, by the time games really start to take advantage of it (and there is a clear difference between the iPad 3 and iPad 4), the iPad 5 will be on the horizon. The whole shorter upgrade cycle of the iPad really didn't allow the A5X to be fully taken advantage of and any games in development now aren't going to start over again simply because of the A6X.

The upgrades to the iPad 4, even for a gamer (and I don't know of any true gamer that would spend money on a tablet just to play games), aren't worth it if one already has an iPad 3. The upgrade is substantial going from an iPad or iPad 2 but not an iPad 3 (just like the upgrades to the iPhone 5 aren't that big compared to the iPhone 4S).
I really dislike the "shorter upgrade cycle." There isn't enough of an increase in quality to warrant upgrading, but I'm sure tons of people will do it anyway. I'd rather them take a little extra time and really blow us away with each new upgrade.
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Old 12-06-2012, 11:12 AM
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Realistically, though, how much does a shorter upgrade cycle really matter for the typical consumer? Average consumers aren't rushing out to buy the shiniest and newest iPad each year, and iPad 4 is a pretty significant upgrade for somebody who is still on an original iPad or iPad 2.

Technology enthusiasts seem to forget this because they always want the newest and shiniest products, but it's funny that this is the only industry where this commonly happens. I don't get upset that this year's car, HDTV or refrigerator makes my previous model "obsolete."



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Old 12-06-2012, 04:55 PM
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It's more than likely due to the lifespan of these devices. Many people are now purchasing iPhones, iPods, and iPads with the mindset that they will last two years whereas refrigerators, TVs, cars, etc. are going to be kept until they break down (5-10 years). Having a product update cycle of once very 7 months is more meaningful if the product is going to be used for 24-36 months. It doesn't matter if someone is going to keep the product for 10 years as not buying an inconsequential update doesn't mean anything whereas buying the latest iPad can actually extend its life by another year.

Many of these devices are also hovering around impulse buy territory as well and let's not forget that the tech hungry crowds were the ones initially financing the tablet market. It hasn't been until the last 1.5-2 years where average consumers are starting to buy them as well.



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Old 12-11-2012, 07:40 AM
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The ipad 4 is batter tablet with faster processor, upgraded Wi-Fi. It's also a good upgrade option for original iPad owners or iPad 2 owners. But for iPad 3 owners, it's far from a must-have upgrade.
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Old 12-16-2012, 10:30 PM
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The difference between my iPad 3 and one of my student's iPad 4 are minuscule in daily use. We were both on the same WiFi network and I could tell no difference in speed or quality. All his pages and mine loaded within a second or so. The only real difference is the new Lightning plug which can be inserted regardless of side.

I only replace my devices when they no longer work. I still have a second generation iPod Touch, my daughter has an iPad 1, and a first generation iPod Nano. My wife has an iPad 2 and all of them work great, still have good battery life and make everyone happy. Apple could have a cycle time of a month and it would make no difference to our purchasing decisions.
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Topic: iPad 3 Vs. iPad 4

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