iPad Air: The Latest from Apple

Apple has done it again. Just when you think they’ve hit the wall on offering new products or improving existing products, they come up with something like this. The iPad Air is thinner, lighter, and more capable than any other tablet on the market.

The iPad Air is 7.5 mm thin and weighs just one pound. To put that into perspective, 7.5 mm thickness looks like this: As far as tablets go, this is incredibly thin. One pound is the weight of a package of four sticks of butter. All-in-all, the iPad Air is thin and light. That’s great, but what can it do?

Watching movies and playing graphic-heavy video games are clearer than ever with the 3.1 million pixel, 2048 x 1536 resolution display. Text is sharper, and video content is stunning. The A7 chip ups the CPU so that performance and battery life is enhanced. The new Ultrafast Wi-Fi uses two antennas and advanced technology to increase download speeds and web connections.

To sweeten the deal, Apple has added iPhoto, iMovie, Garage Band, Pages, Numbers, and Keynote as free apps on the new device. Each app has been optimized to work with the new powerful technology. These apps are regularly $9.99 or more per app.

The FaceTime HD Camera enhances video conversations and the 5 megapixel iSight camera takes still images and video using the A7 processor and Retina Display to help even amateur photographers take great photos.

Included with the iPad Air is the iOS7 operating system, which is available to all of the newer Apple mobile devices, as well as iCloud cloud storage.

It all sounds great, but here’s the bad news. The iPad Air STARTS at $499. That’s the basic 16GB Wi-Fi model. Now, that model is probably enough for most of us. But if you start adding cell plans to access data networks, the 16GB goes up to $629, and that doesn’t include the monthly charges from the service provider. This also doesn’t include a case or any accessories.

Is it worth it? Well, it all depends on you. Compared to the iPad 2, which is $399 for 16GB, this device is smaller, has a better display, a faster processer, a fancier camera, has more options for data plans, and a new connector that renders all of your old Apple 30-pin cords useless. If you have the money and these options sound like they appeal to you… or if you are the person who has to have the latest and greatest technology that is becoming obsolete on the shelf right now because you just know they are working on the next model – I guess you’ll be taking the plunge.

For me, I’ll keep my perfectly workable iPad 2 for now. It meets my needs, has great features, and is basically like new. Oh, but if anyone out there wants to buy one for me, I might reconsider my position.a

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