New iPad Meta-Review: What the Critics Are Saying

By Andrew Tarantola on at

The first reviews of Apple's 3rd-generation iPad are in and the general consensus is that this is the tablet you've been waiting for—assuming you don't already own its predecessor, that is.


The Verge:

They really like the screen!

Yes, this display is outrageous. It's stunning. It's incredible. I'm not being hyperbolic or exaggerative when I say it is easily the most beautiful computer display I have ever looked at. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that you hold this in your hands, or maybe it's the technology that Apple is utilizing, or maybe it's the responsiveness of iOS - but there's something almost bizarre about how good this screen is. After the launch event, I described the screen as "surreal," and I still think that's a pretty good fit.

Let's be clear: the new iPad is in a class by itself, just as its predecessor was. As the latest product in a lineage of devices that defined this category, the iPad continues to stand head and shoulders above the competition. With the addition of the Retina display, LTE, more memory, and a more powerful CPU, Apple has absolutely held onto the iPad's market position as the dominant player and product to beat.


The Guardian:

The new iPad has what the people want, claims Charles Arthur.

The iPad 3 puts Apple a mile ahead of anything we've seen from Android tablets. The interface is unchanged. But all sorts of incremental details – especially the screen, but also the camera capability and so the graphics heft, and the mobile broadband capability – have been ratcheted up. It's hard to see anyone catching this product because it offers what people want: access to computing wherever you are. Not every sort of computing, and there are still rough edges (notably the dictation) and incompatibilities (LTE). But for function and form, nothing else gets close.


Wall Street Journal:

Ebook fans should consider the upgrade.

It has the most spectacular display I have ever seen in a mobile device. The company squeezed four times the pixels into the same physical space as on the iPad 2 and claims the new iPad's screen has a million more pixels than an HDTV. All I know is that text is much sharper, and photos look richer.

If you already own an iPad 2, and like it, you shouldn't feel like you have to rush out to buy the new one. However, for those who use their iPads as their main e-readers, and those who use it frequently while away from Wi-Fi coverage, this new model could make a big difference.



It doesn't matter than Apple didn't change the design, claims TechCrunch.

What we have is a 9.7-inch stab of aluminum and glass that when illuminated, becomes an absolutely stunning display of light and color. At first glance, the new iPad is almost indistinguishable from the iPad 2. The same Smart Covers even fit on both. But it doesn't matter what the device looks like. What matters is what you're looking at: the screen.

Web pages look almost as if they're being displayed in a high-quality glossy magazine. Photos look like photos - the printed out kind. Text is razor sharp and crisp, just like print.



It takes too long to charge, says T3.

In testing we noticed a quickening in battery drain with the new iPad when browsing, viewing and creating content when compared to iPad 2. Watching a two-hour HD movie on both devices reduced 10 per cent more of the third-gen’s battery, while overnight energy seepage clocked in at six per cent, compared to zero from iPad 2.

General, non-intensive use reduced the battery by about 10 per cent per hour, which is bang on Apple’s claimed drainage. Our major gripe, though, is that the new iPad still takes an excessive amount of time to reach full charge.


The Telegraph:

Now's the time to dive into the tablet ocean, says The Telegraph.

If you have been holding off getting a tablet then this is the one to go for. In my view, it's the best that money can buy. Existing iPad owners who are thinking of upgrading should take a look at this new device. You'll see the difference very, very clearly indeed.



More infatuation for that retina display, from Macworld.

The new iPad is just that: The iPad, updated for a new year and millions of new iPad users. It's not smaller or lighter, but it's got a remarkable screen, a much better rear camera, and support for cellular networking that can run at Wi-Fi speeds. It's the iPad that millions of people have embraced, only one year better.

Users of the iPad 2 shouldn't fret: Their iPad investment is certainly good for another year. But they might not want to look too closely at the new iPad's screen. Once you get a load of that Retina display, it's hard to go back to anything else.



No lag, says the gear of slash:

Steve Jobs would have approved of the new iPad. With its focus on the holistic experience rather than individual boasts around its constituent parts, it's the epitome of the Post-PC world the Apple founder envisaged. No lag or delay; no frustrating cloud settings or arcane minimum software requirements. Simply pick up, swipe, and you're immersed in a joined-up ecosystem. Apple doesn't need another revolution, it has already started one, and the new iPad brings a fresh degree of refinement to a segment in which it is undoubtedly the king.



Stuff ran a few benchmark apps on the new iPad.

Because we’re geeks, we tried out a couple of benchmarking apps. Geekbench 2 noted that the new iPad has twice the RAM of iPad 2, taking it from 503MB to just shy of 1GB. Processing performance, though, is nigh-on identical, averaging 760.2 on iPad 2 and 760.6 on the new iPad.

Our graphics benchmark, GLBenchmark 2.1.2, told a different story. In the Egypt test the iPad 2 averaged 9fps, while the new iPad knocked it out of the park with 46fps. Yep, it’s quick – all we’re left wondering is how much quicker it would be with quad-core processing, too.