Erik’s Brain

The reward of a thing well done...

iPad 2

I got the iPad the day it came out. And from Day One I noticed that the screen left a little to be desired. The colors and brightness and viewing angle were all very good. The pixels were just too big. Honestly that was the FIRST thing I noticed when I turned it on and saw the silver Apple logo the very first time. “Damn. Those pixels are pretty obvious.”

Fast forward to the day I got my iPhone 4. The screen on the iPhone 4 was, and still is, stunning. It’s the nicest screen I’ve ever seen or used. By comparison, it also made reading books on my iPad that much more painful. Rendering serif typefaces on a roughly 133ppi screen that is held a couple of feet from one’s face is tough. It just can’t be done well. Chances are good that even someone far less anal about visuals than I am would have issues with how text can look on the iPad.

After a few days with the iPhone 4, I decided that the next iPad has to double the pixel density. But that means four times as many pixels on screen. Which means four times the graphics power and four times the RAM available for video output. The iPad already needs a faster CPU and at least twice the RAM. And that’s without packing more pixels on the screen. Is it really possible to massively increase the processing power of the unit while also:

  • making it thinner (Apple seems to always make “the next version” of whatever they make thinner than the last one)

  • maintaining the battery life (Longer would be better, of course, but I have no complaints about the iPad battery life)

  • keeping heat under control

Sounds like science fiction for the power to increase that much in such a short amount of time. I’ll echo Gruber who said: “That many pixels on an iPad, though, would require a lot more RAM and one hell of a mobile video card. I hope it’s true, because it’d be beautiful, but I’ll believe it when I see it.”