Steven Jobs unveiled the new iPad 2 today. Amongs its greatest new features: 2 cameras, one front-facing, slimmer design and lighter body weight, and little else. This is what most of its better competitors already have, plus the competitors have the ability to run Flash, or to run the the open Android OS, or the better QnX OS in the case of RIM.
Nevertheless, surely, Apple fans will be thrilled and will dittch their old iPads 1 for the new iPad2.
Thise who own Apple shares, however, should take note that there at the end of 2010 there were already 30 different tablets for sale(!).
There are in total 102 known tablets from 64 different makers that are either available now or in development. The space is hugely overcrowded.
Among the best entries are Motorola's Xoom (Android), and RIM's playbook (QnX). ComputerWorld says in the Xoom vs iPad2 war, the Xoom is clearly the winner:
The major new additions to the iPad include a dual-core processor and front and rear cameras, so in those instances, it's caught up to the Xoom. The new svelter and slightly thinner design is good as well. A gyroscope has been added, which the Xoom already has. And software tweaks, via the new iOS 4.3, are welcome as well.
But that still leaves the Xoom a better tablet than the iPad. Start with the operating system. With iOS 4.3, iOS was tweaked but didn't get a dramatic overhaul. Android 3.0, called Honeycomb, is simply better than the iOS for a number of reasons. It handles notifications, multi-tasking and app switching better. The widgets still outpace anything on the iOS. And Honeycomb has more features and is more customizable. The iOS 4.3 tweaks did nothing to change any of that.
The Chrome-like browser built into Xoom trumps the Safari running on the iPad 2. Xoom's browser sports tabs, will sync bookmarks with PC, Mac, and Linux versions of Chrome, and uses a single box for typing URLs and searching.
As for the Rim device, it is targetted to the business user, where it clearly has a differentiating factor.
Nevertheless, Apple fanatics will surely be buying the iPad2 in droves.