Over three million iPads were sold during the first 80 days of its release in April 2010. Sales are continuing at an estimated two million per month. During the second quarter of 2011, Apple is expected to release the iPad 2. This second-generation iPad is anticipated to be thinner and lighter than the first, with a processor that is much faster.
Before the second generation iPad comes out, owners of the original iPad will get an improvement with the introduction of iOS 4.2 due out this November. With iOS 4.2, iPad users will have access to new features that include the ability to print using AirPrint, stream music to AirPlay enabled home entertainment equipment, and have a unified email inbox.
An improved screen resolution is something hoped for in the iPad 2.0, something similar to Apple’s Retina Display, which is a part of the iPhone 4. Front and rear facing video cameras are also anticipated allowing the device to be used for FaceTime teleconferencing. There are also rumors of a seven-inch iPad, smaller than the current 9.7-inch screen.
The next generation iPad will find itself with a lot more competition than the original iPad. Since Apple first introduced the iPad, competitors have been producing their own versions of tablet computers. Most of them will have a connection to an app store, which seems to be critical to tablet computers continued success.
At this time, the main app types are Apple and Android. The Samsung Galaxy Tab, Dell Streak, and LG Electonics Optimus are all Android-based tablet computers that will run Adroid Market apps. Apple’s App Store is well ahead of the competition. It has over 250,000 apps with more than 25,000 designed specifically to run on the iPad tablet computer.
The features included in the iPad 2.0 may depend on the features offered in tablet computers produced by other companies. Apple will likely be watching its competitors and include elements that will make the iPad 2.0 more irresistible to buyers. They need to give buyers a reason to want their product more than the other tablet computers being manufactured.