Pre-Launch iPad 2 Miscellany

The Friday 5:00 pm Sale Time

There have been lines for every iPhone release. In April 2010 there were lines for the original iPad. February 2011 Verizon did there biggest sales day in history of Verizon iPhone pre-sales. But, when the the Verizon iPhone went on sale there were no lines.

I think the choice to offer online orders at the same time as the sale date, and to have a Friday at 5:00 pm sale time is all to help ensure that there will be lines. Because those lines are the best marketing Apple has. Nothing breeds success like success. And nothing says success more than lots of stores with long lines of happy customers.

During the iPad 2 announcement Steve Jobs dubbed 2011 as the year of the iPad 2. Apple wants to tell the story that the iPad 2 is just as amazing as the iPad 1. Even though it’s the second version, and in spite of all these new tablets and iPad competitors coming out, people are still lining up for this new iPad.

And, at least from where I’m sitting, it’s going to work. I was completely planning to pre-order one and, for once, not stand in line. Because last year the pre-orders all arrived quite timely. But, since there are no pre-orders I will once again be standing in line. But more on what I’m doing in a bit.

The Battery

The battery is, by far, the best feature of the iPad. They say it lasts for 10 hours, but my original iPad probably lasts closer to 12. In fact, over the past year that I’ve owned it I have probably only charged it a few dozen times.

Contrast that to my iPhone which I have probably charged a few hundred times since June, and my laptop which I keep plugged in almost all the time.

Granted, I use my iPad the least of all three, but never once have I worried about the battery of the thing. It keeps going and going and going…

The Casing

Sure it’s thinner and lighter — that’s part of the requirement of being new technology, you know? — but will it be easier to hold with one hand?

The thing that makes the original iPad most difficult to hold with one hand is not just the weight but also that slippery aluminum back. And the new iPad has that same slippery aluminum back.

I asked some folks who were at the Apple press conference and who had the chance to fiddle with some of the display model iPad 2s. The response was that the thinner form factor did help somewhat with the ability to hold the iPad one handedly. But the biggest factor is still the weight and so it’s not dramatically easier to hold with one hand.

The Color

The white one has been abundantly displayed throughout Apple’s marketing of the iPad. Probably because (a) they want to make up for the fact the white iPhone never shipped; but I think primarily it’s because (b) a picture of the white iPad is instantly recognizable as the new iPad. At first glance a picture of the black iPad 2 could be mistaken for an iPad 1. Using the white is a way to quickly make a statement that this is the new iPad. In fact, they are showing off the white iPad and it’s cover more than they show off the camera.

The Cover

Apple is going to sell a lot of those Smart Covers. In fact, I almost wonder how many people will assume the cover comes with the iPad.

The Choices

So, say you’ve already got an iPad and you don’t know if you should upgrade or not. I say don’t. I wouldn’t be upgrading except for the fact that I want to give my current iPad to my wife, and also that I kind-of have to upgrade now that tech writing will be my full-time job come April 4.1

For those of you who have been holding out for the next iPad and you’re not sure if you should get one or not, I say go for it. If you want one, now’s a great time to buy one.

Sure another model will come out sometime in the next year and it will have awesome features that this current model doesn’t. But that is always going to be the case.

Marco Arment was right when he said that the best time to buy an Apple product is right when it comes out. It is doubtful that the iPad 2 will ever be cheaper until a the next model of iPad comes out.

If you don’t care about which model you get and you just want the cheapest iPad possible then you might want to consider buying an original iPad from Apple’s website right now. They’re on clearance for about $100 off.

If you need more assistance deciding just which type of iPad to get (white or black, 3G or not, AT&T or Verizon) then I highly recommend you read Marco’s aforementioned article. It’s full of good advice for deciding just which iPad 2 you should buy.

So, Which iPad 2 Will I Bet Getting?

I will be standing in line this Friday to buy a 16 GB, Wi-Fi only, black iPad 2. In part because I want to get the cheapest model possible. But also in part because the cheapest model just so happens to be exactly what I want.

Black because it is much more appealing and cool than that sissy white color.2 16 GB because it’s more than enough for me. And Wi-Fi only because I can’t recall one time in the year I’ve owned my current iPad that I needed 3G. And now that I can use my iPhone 4 as a mobile hotspot, it really isn’t worth the extra cost for me to get 3G.

Also I will be buying a Smart Cover. Hopefully there will be plenty of them out to see before I have to pick one, but I suspect I’ll be getting black leather.

  1. It’s one thing to not buy the latest computer every time they come out, but the iPhone and iPad are at the tip of the arrow right now
  2. Though, for what it’s worth, I suspect white iPad 2s will outsell black ones.
Pre-Launch iPad 2 Miscellany