Apple Retires the iPad 2, Replaces it With iPad 4 as the new $400 “Budget” Model

Apple 942303802_1337041136_o[1]quietly retired their best selling tablet today, and they replaced it with a slightly newer model. The iPad 2 had been Apple's designated budget model ever since it was reintroduced in 2012, but this 2011 era tablet has been getting a little long in the tooth. With benchmark tests, cameras (VGA and 2MP), and a screen resolution (1024 x 768) about on par with today's budget Android tablets, the iPad 2 no longer presented as good of a value as it did 2 years ago.

But the iPad 4, now that's another matter. This tablet, which was initially released in late 2012, has a better CPU, much better graphics chip, higher resolution cameras (5MP and 1.2MP), and 4 times the screen resolution (2,048 x 1,536). With a price tag of $400, it's going to present a much better value than the iPad 2.

But even though this looks like a nice tablet, it's far from perfect. That higher resolution screen requires a much larger battery and the screen resolution largely cancels out the more powerful graphics chip. Also, this tablet is limited to only 16GB of storage, and if you use a lot of digital textbooks or download videos which make use of the full screen resolution that's a detail you'll notice pretty quickly.

ipad4_2[1]

In spite of the few shortcomings, I might even get one. The screen on my iPad 2 has long been broken, but I have been avoiding replacing it because it worked well enough. But with the relaunch of the iPad 4, now might be a good time to upgrade.

I would expect that a lot of iPad 2 owners feel the same way, and given that the iPad 2 represents the single largest block of iPad models I would bet that Apple is going to have a huge bump in sales this quarter.

About Nate Hoffelder (11385 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader: "I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

3 Comments on Apple Retires the iPad 2, Replaces it With iPad 4 as the new $400 “Budget” Model

  1. I really like my iPad 4, and I think Apple made a good decision. I’ve had no problems with speed or battery life. 16GB could be an issue if you want to download lots of video, but it hasn’t been a problem otherwise.

  2. I think it stayed around for so long because so many schools were using it for the old adaptor and they couldn’t get the cost down on the iPad 4. Now that they have, the iPad 2 has gone the way of the dodo.

    The lightening adapter is way better than the 30-pin adapter, particularly in that you don’t have to worry about whether you’re plugging it in the right way or not.

    Before you buy it, I would try the iPad Mini with retina display. If you’ve got good eyesight and you don’t need a bigger iPad for keyboards etc… its much easier to carry around.

    • I should look at the iPad Mini, yes. I love Android but there are a couple tasks which I just cannot do with current Android apps. And since I prefer smaller screen sizes, the 8″ iPad Mini might suit me better than an iPad 4.

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