International 4G iPad Models Will Work on AT&T

With the introduction of the new iPad, the 4G LTE data plans cost and how they would work was not made clear. Just yesterday, it was clarified that Verizon would support the mobile hotspot functionality in the iPad data plans. AT&T will not for now though.

Yesterday, SlashGear pointed out that the WiFi + 4G iPad announced by Apple on Wednesday will not be compatible with LTE networks under development in most of the launch countries. The LTE discussion during the media event focused on five carriers in the US (AT&T and Verizon) and Canada (Bell, Rogers, and Telus). It was also noted that international markets would have other options available for cellular connectivity.

An issue with the international LTE availability comes from the fact that AT&T’s version of the new iPad released in the US support LTE on the 700 MHz and 2100 MHz frequency bands. However, Apple is distributing those same models to its international markets, but LTE infrastructure in most of those countries are utilizing 800 MHz, 1800 MHz, and 2600 MHz bands that are not support by the device.

Now, Apple has confirmed to The Verge that those international 4G iPad models can be used on AT&T’s LTE network in the United States by travelers, even though they will not have LTE support at home. Apple says:

iPads sold internationally will be able to connect to AT&Ts LTE network when in the US with the appropriate SIM and plan.


Apple Sells Out of iPad Launch Day Supplies in U.S. Online Store

Yesterday, we reported that shipping dates for certain iPad models had already begun to get pushed backed to March 19th. Today, Apple has sold out of its launch day iPad stock in its U.S. online store. Currently, all 18 models now are offering shipping estimates of March 19th for new orders.

iPad March 19th ship date

When shipping time is accounted for, customers placing orders now shouldn’t expect their new iPad to arrive until the middle of the week following the device’s launch next Friday. Next Friday’s iPad launch will be the largest debut yet for the company. Also, Apple is planning to launch the new iPad in 25 additional countries on March 23rd.

In addition, the Canadian store encounters a similar a situation. The stores for Australia and Singapore now quote shipping dates of March 22nd for all models. Also, Apple’s European launch countries (France, Germany, Switzerland, and the UK) and Japan are all showing shipping estimates of 2-3 weeks for new orders.


Rumor: Google to Launch 7 inch Android Tablet with Asus

Everyone and his grandmother has heard this rumor by now, which states that Google is apparently working on a 7 inch Android tablet to capture market share in the budget tablet space and prevent Amazon, as well as Chinese manufacturers, both of which it has no real control over, from dominating the space.

Even though the rumor has been reported by Digitimes, whose track record could inspire a sequel to “Dumb and Dumber”, it does seem to be a likely move by Google. Android tablets have been getting slaughtered in any price point even remotely close to the iPad, mostly because of one reason – they suck.

If Google wants to enter the tablet space and gain market share, it would have to use a similar strategy to the one it used in the smartphone market – targeting the budget conscious consumers.

According to the rumor, Google is working with Asus to launch a 7 inch tablet (we’re not sure whether it will be christened the Nexus Tablet) which will be priced at $199 to $249.

Apparently, Google chose Asus because HTC wasn’t willing to impair its brand image with cheap tablets, Acer didn’t have the in-house R&D capability, and Samsung can’t seem to design any tablet which doesn’t look like a rip-off of the iPad (OK, the last part may not really be the reason why it didn’t choose Samsung, but it’s the first thing that comes to mind).

The Google-Asus tablet will presumably run Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich and will be the first tablet to use the Google Play Store which was unveiled earlier this week.

New Apple iPad vs. iPad 2 – To Buy Or Not To Buy?

The new iPad is superior in every way to its predecessor, the iPad 2. However, is the new iPad a worthy update if you own the iPad 2?

Below are 5 areas where the new iPad  is a major improvement over the iPad 2 -:

Display – The new iPad has the same screen size as the iPad 2 at 9.7-inches. However, the biggest difference between the two is the resolution of the screen. While the new iPad has an eye-busting resolution of 2048*1536, the iPad 2 has a mere screen resolution of 1024×768. The saturation and color rendering on the new iPad screen is also up to 40% much better than the screen on the iPad 2.

iSight camera – The iPad 2 was the first iPad to come with a camera, but sadly the camera on the device was a disappointment. It took some terrible photos, but was perfect for video calling. After all, who uses a tablet to take photos? Well, iPad does not want to take any chance, and has updated the camera on the new iPad to a 5MP one, which sports the same camera technology as the one found on the iPhone 4S 8MP snapper.

Performance – The iPad 2 still is the best performing tablet out there. The PowerVR SGX543 GPU inside the iPad 2 is still an overkill for the resolution it has to push on the iPad 2. However, since the new iPad has such a big screen, Apple also increased the core count on the PowerVR SGX543 GPU to a total of four. In theory, at the same resolution, users should expect to see a 4x improvement in performance. While that might not be possible in the real world scenarios, the 4 cores inside the PowerVR SGX543 will make sure that games on the new iPad don’t struggle at such an insane resolution.

RAM – While the iPad 2 has only 512MB of RAM, the new iPad comes with 1GB of RAM. Considering the increase in resolution, apps appetite for RAM will also increase, and so it was obvious for Apple to increase the total amount of RAM on the new iPad. While the extra amount of RAM may not affect performance much in day-to-day use, it will definitely come in handy while loading big games or under heavy multi-tasking.

Connectivity – The new iPad is the first device from Apple to support the blazing fast LTE networks from Verizon and AT&T. This ensures that users can get a download speed of up to a whopping 72Mbps per second! In contrast to this, the iPad 2 comes with support for only the 3G networks, with a maximum download speed of up to 14.4Mbps.

It is clearly visible from the above five points, that the new iPad trumps the iPad 2 in every possible way. However, if you own an iPad 2, should you really upgrade to the new iPad? In my opinion, while the new iPad comes with some major changes including a beautiful display, I don’t think there is any need for iPad 2 owners to update to the new iPad. The iPad 2 is by no means outdated, and still offers more than decent performance.

If you own an original iPad though, its time for you to update though! The original iPad is now more than 2 years old now, and has reached the end of its life. If you are a graphic designer, and use your iPad for some graphic designing purpose though, I’d recommend you to buy the new iPad though. The difference in resolution will be greatly appreciated by all the graphic designers.

Finally, if you still don’t own a tablet, the iPad 2 for $399 is an awesome bargain for a tablet. Go get it now!


Verizon Including Mobile Hotspot in iPad Data Plans

With the introduction of the iPad, Apple also introduced the ability to use the iPad as a hotspot, but only if carriers allow it. When announced, it wasn’t clear what the data plans for the 4G + WiFi version would be like. Also, it wasn’t clear if AT&T and Verizon would support the hotspot feature.

Today, GottaBeMobile reports that Verizon has officially announced that its data plans for the new iPad Wi-Fi + 4G will include mobile hotspot functionality at no additional charge. This will allow users to share the device’s data network and broadcast it as a WiFi signal. That WiFi signal can be used to provide data connectivity for other WiFi enabled devices.

AT&T Verizon 4G LTE iPad data plans

Unfortunately, AT&T has still yet to announce specific plans for mobile hotspot functionality on the new iPad, as a statement provided to 9to5Mac. AT&T is currently “working with Apple” on the issue, but isn’t offering the capability at this moment.

It is also worth pointing out that owning an iPad 4G + WiFi version is cheaper than owning a MiFi in the US. In the US, a MiFi usually has a $50 upfront fee and then $50/month fee for 24 months. That works out to $2,000+ before tax, and if you want to terminate the contract early, there is an additional fee. However, if you just purchase an iPad 4G+LTE, you aren’t tied to contract and only have to pay for the data plan/hotspot functionality if you want.

Shipping Dates for New iPad Orders Begin to Get Pushed Back

Yesterday, Apple announced the next-generation iPad. The new iPad features a Retina Display. improved camera, and a significantly faster processor. In addition, the company has also released a new ad for its next-generation. It is a pretty cool ad so be sure to check it out here.

Following the new Apple TV’s  slip to a 1-2 week shipping estimate in Apple’s U.S. online store yesterday (pretty impressive for just a hobby), Apple’s supplies of the new iPad have already started to show. The 16GB and 64GB models of the AT&T 4G + WiFi iPad in white are now showing estimated shipping dates of March 19 in the stores. Previously, models were listed to deliver on the launch date of March 16th.

Shipping dates in other launch countries have begun to be pushed back as well. Apple’s Store for Japan now shows a delivery date by March 19th and its German store shows a date of March 22nd. In Canada, many models are showing an “available” date of March 19. Apple’s UK online store is also showing shipping estimates of 2-3 weeks for all models of the new iPad.

Seems like they are going to sell a lot of them.

Apple Releases TV Ad for the new iPad

Earlier today, Apple announced the next-generation iPad. The new iPad features a Retina Display. improved camera, and a significantly faster processor. In addition, the company has also released a new ad for its next-generation iPad. The ad’s main focus is on the iPad’s gorgeous Retina Display.

“When a screen becomes this good, colors are more vibrant. Words are pin sharp. Everything is more brilliant because when a screen becomes this good, it’s simply you and the things you care about. The stunning Retina Display on the new iPad,” said the voiceover.

In the ad, a user is shown zooming in on a photo, editing in iPhoto, reading in iBooks, watching a movie and finger painting on the new device. For now, the company is using the Retina Display as a dominant marketing tactic for the new iPad, rather than the 4G LTE capabilities or the upgraded camera and processor. Apple’s homepage promotes the “resolutionary” new iPad.

You can watch the ad below:

The beauty about Apple’s ads are that instead of selling specifications, they sell experiences. Brilliant!

iPhoto for iOS, Updates for iMovie and Garageband Now Available on App Store

With the introduction of the new iPad, Apple also introduced iPhoto for iOS, which will be available from today itself. iPhoto for iOS offers a wide choice of photo editing and comparison features, including auto-enhancements such as straightening photos and fixing contrast. Brush palettes offer a number of editing tools including red-eye removal, lighten, sharpen, soften, and darken. iPhoto can handle images up to 19 megapixels.

With iPhoto for iOS, Apple brings Multi-Touch to photography in a breakthrough way. Browse, edit, and share your photos from your iPad or iPhone, like never before – all the powerful tools you need are at your fingertips. And with iCloud, you can share your experiences as stunning photo journals.

Use simple gestures to quickly sort through photos and find your best shots. A powerful set of Multi-Touch tools helps you perfect color and exposure, crop, straighten, and retouch images. Enhance pictures by adding beautiful, Apple-designed effects with just a tap. Or use fingertip brushes to apply adjustments exactly where you want them. In addition to posting photos to Facebook, Flickr, and Twitter, you can beam photos between your iPhone and iPad, stream photos and slideshows to your Apple TV with AirPlay, and use iCloud to publish photo journals to the web to share your stories with friends and family in a whole new way.

The company has kept its promise, and now iPhoto is available for purchase.  The app costs $4.99 and is available via the App Store for purchase. [Direct Link] In addition, iMovie and GarageBand have also been updated, and are a free upgrade for current owners.


How To Update to iOS 5.1 From iTunes/Manually

iOS 5.1 brings with it performance and battery life improvements, along with some new features. Upgrading to iOS 5.1 is a easy task and you just need to connect your device to the PC and check for updates.

If you are unsure on how to update your device to iOS 4.3 here are the simple steps to update to the latest OS from Apple.

How To Update to iOS 5.1 Through iTunes

Step 1: Connect your device to iTunes using the USB cable.

Step 2: Once iTunes has detected your device, click on the device name in the left hand menu and click on the “Check for Update” in the device description box.


Step 3: Apple will show you a popup message as seen above if an update for your device is available. Click on the “Download and Update” button.

Step 4: Apple will download the iOS 5.1 update and install it on your device. It is important that you DO NOT disconnect the device from the computer during the process. It is also recommended to keep your computer plugged in to the power outlet during the process.

That’s it. The process might take around 10-30 minutes depending on how long it takes to download the update to your computer and install it. Once iOS 5.1 is installed, iTunes will sync your device and you can use it again.

How To Update to iOS 5.1 Manually

In some cases, the iTunes update process might not work for you for several reasons. In those cases, you can also update your device to iOS 5.1 manually. Here are the steps to manually update your device to iOS 5.1.

Step 1: Download the iOS 5.1 IPSW file for your device using the iOS 5.1 IPSW direct download links.

Step 2: Connect your device to the computer using the USB cable and wait for iTunes to detect it.

Step 3: Once your device has been detected – follow the steps given below for different OS.

  • For Windows – Hold the Shift key and then click on the “Check for Update/Update” button.
  • For Mac OS X – Hold the Option key and then click on the “Check for Update/Update” button.

Step 4: In the next dialog browse to the file that you downloaded from Step 1 and select the IPSW file.

Step 5: iTunes will now use the IPSW file and update your device to iOS 5.1. The process should take around 10-20 minutes.

That’s it. Your device will be updated to iOS 5.1 with ease. Please feel free to post your questions in the comments box below.

iOS 5.1 IPSW Direct Download Links

Along with the ‘new iPad‘, Apple has also released iOS 5.1 to iDevice owners. This new version of iOS brings with it quite a few changes, bug fixes and new features. The most important change in the new version is that Siri now officially supports Japanese language. Secondly, users can also delete photos from their Photo Stream.

Other changes include a permanent camera shortcut icon on the lockscreen, battery life improvements, and more. Below the the full change-log of the update -:

  • Japanese language support for Siri
  • Photos can now be deleted from Photo Stream
  • Camera shortcut now always visible on Lock screen for iPhone 4S, iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS and iPod Touch (4th generation)
  • Camera face detection now highlights all detected faces
  • Redesigned Camera app for iPad
  • Genius Mixes and Genius Playlists for iTunes Match Subscribers
  • Audio for TV shows and movies on iPad optimized to sound louder and clearer
  • Updated AT&T network indicator
  • Address bugs affecting battery life
  • Fixes an issue that occasionally caused audio to drop for outgoing calls.
The iOS 5.1 update is available for the iPhone 4S, iPhone 4, and the iPhone 3GS, along with the 2nd and 1st generation iPad. Owners of iPod Touch 3G and 4G can also download the update for free from iTunes. Alternatively, iDevice owners can manually update their device to iOS 5.1 by downloading and installing the IPSW file.
The iOS 5.1 IPSW file for the iPhone 4S can be downloaded from here, while the IPSW file for the iPhone 4 can be downloaded from here (GSM) and here (CDMA/Verizon). The IPSW files for iPod Touch 3G and 4G can be downloaded from here and here, respectively. iPad 2 Wi-Fi model owners can download the latest version of iOS 5.1 from here, while 3G+Wi-Fi model owners should click here (GSM) or here (CDMA).