back to article iPad Air not very hot: Apple fanbois SHUN London fondleslab launch

Apple's new iPad Air has fallen to earth with a thud following a dismal launch day in London. The new fondleslab went on sale today and was met with unimpressive crowds which had entirely dissipated by the early morning. Normally, huge throngs of fanbois descend on Apple stores at the merest hint of a new product launch, but …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The first six punters all look like bums.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      I just took a look at the photo. LMAO. Sad bastards.

    2. Erroneous Howard

      They probably ARE bums, the Apple staff just put some barriers around them while they were having a snooze

      1. oolor

        >They probably ARE bums

        Now there, the correct term is big-mac-and-cheap-gin-compensated-line-holders. 20 quid goes a long way to ensure a nervous fanperson gets their bling.

    3. LarsG

      Why Buy

      It's because if you have a retina screen iPad then there is no reason whatsoever to upgrade for the sake of a little less weight. If they had introduced the fingerprint reader ( next year perhaps ) then maybe but only just.

      Most people are waiting for the mini retina screen, that will sell BUT just think that if you hold out till next year you will get one with a fingerprint reader......

      It's not great is it, if all I can find to rave about is this? It really is quite a bland offering but hey you can say you have an Air.. Kudos, nope not any more.

      1. Doug Petrosky 1

        Re: Why Buy

        Ya. Nothing special. Just the best!

        Lightest, smallest, fastest tablet in this size. It is a solid upgrade for first second and third gen owners. What were people hoping for? Maybe next year it will hover? But seriously, how much better than best does it need to be?

      2. menotu

        Re: Why Buy

        fingerprint reader will appear on an upgraded model within 6 months...same as they did with the iPad 3 -4

        1. Kroneous

          Re: Why Buy

          And then HACKED in minutes by a 7yr old using Play Dough to spoof people's prints or chewing gum. That's how advanced Apple's lame stupid purchase was in beating Samsung out the door by merely buying the company out from under them, Motorola and HP. Who'd been using Authentec since 2005!

          Samsung already had a patent submitted for Authentec Sensor in Galaxy S3's HOME button a year before Apple bought them and then killed support to all their prior customers. That's how Apple like to compete..... copy, steal or thief all their ideas off the competition, that they lost in court on accusing them of copying and stealing from them as they've been doing all along!

    4. Jurassic

      Other fanbois putting down Apple fanbois ;-)

      "Latest slab selling like cold, unattractive cakes on Day One in Blighty"

      <sarcasm>That's right, no one will be buying the iPad Air. It is a total failure in every way. Apple will need to claim a loss of a billion dollars as Microsoft did with the Surface. No one is buying the iPad Air... really!</sarcasm>

      (Eyes rolling in reaction to the absurdity ;-))

    5. SuccessCase

      Odd. When Apple, in the past, have had restricted stock, The Register write how they are deliberately restricting stock to create the impression of popularity (even though anyone who knows anything about retail tech business knows you would never, ever, do that because it results in losing sales to your competitors). Now they have adequate stock and are settling into an incremental update pattern (as they have done for years with MacBooks) and again, The Reg proclaim it a disaster. Hmmm.

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I'm waiting for the iPad Air Air.

    7. Sheep!

      "The first six punters all look like bums."

      They must be the ones queuing for the 5c then.

  2. messele

    I'd missed your Apple bullshit for the last week or so Hamill, I was beginning to get concerned that they would find you face down in a pool of your own bitterness.

    Since when were queues for laptops something that was noteworthy? You go for that big promotion, newshound!

    1. Frankee Llonnygog

      Re I'd missed your Apple bullshit for the last week

      Maybe El Reg has passed PEAK STUPID

      1. Frank Bough

        Re: Re I'd missed your Apple bullshit for the last week

        God I fucking hope so

        1. ratfox

          Re: Re I'd missed your Apple bullshit for the last week

          Heh. Compare with the gushing going on here:

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Re I'd missed your Apple bullshit for the last week

            why are they all clapping and cheering like morons?

            1. ThomH

              Re: Re I'd missed your Apple bullshit for the last week (@AC)

              The Apple shop employees are paid to clap and cheer like morons at every product launch. They'll even insist on giving you high fives on your way, though they are at least doing it in order to provide themselves with shelter, warmth, food, etc, rather than because they honestly think that shaving 180g off an already successful product is really exciting.

              I guess the issue on Apple's side, when launching modest annual evolutions, is whether to risk a damp squib of a launch event like this, or to forego one for the first time since the iPad was announced. Damp squib it is.

      2. Sander van der Wal
        Thumb Down

        Re: Re I'd missed your Apple bullshit for the last week

        'Fraid not, they are still approaching it. More's the pity

    2. SuccessCase

      Be fair, he works hard. He must have searched high and low to find those "mixed" reviews. I could only find five star ratings.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "Be fair, he works hard. He must have searched high and low to find those "mixed" reviews. I could only find five star ratings."

        Ha, the usual Fandroid contingent down-votes from but where are the links to the bad reviews? Odd that. I guess when the paucity of links that prove my comment wrong is so great, even the Fandroids are too embarrassed to take up the challenge !

    3. sabroni Silver badge

      face down in a pool of your own bitterness.

      Aww, didn't anyone queue for the latest device from your favourite manufacturer?

      But yeah, Hamill is the one with all the bitterness....

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: face down in a pool of your own bitterness.

        if el reg was printed on paper, who would queue for it?

        besides parrots and pigeons and budgies, i mean...

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      queues for laptops...

      iPad air is a tablet

      1. messele

        Re: queues for laptops...

        Yep exactly - they are tablets not laptops. It took way longer than I was expecting for somebody to actually correct my earlier comment, thanks for paying attention.

        So what the hell is this quote from the article supposed to mean?

        "The tech seems to be maturing," he added. "I remember old laptops, which used to break every year, so you needed to buy a new one. That's not the case anymore and Apple also face competition from Google or Samsung. Apple are still on top of the game, but you cannot expect them to do something different each time."

  3. EddieD


    "The tech seems to be maturing," he added. "I remember old laptops, which used to break every year, so you needed to buy a new one."

    I don't remember that time at all - I've still got a late 90s vintage Macbook G3 and a couple of iBooks, a few ancient Latitudes - all of which got very heavy usage as we couldn't afford to buy many back then...

    In fact it's only of late that the annual upgrades have started, because someone seems to have started making machines that cannot be user serviced, or upgraded at all, so they go obselete very quickly, quickly enough in fact that it looks like a marketting strategy, but no-one would do that, would they?

    1. Cliff

      Re: Eh?

      >>>I remember old laptops, which used to break every year, so you needed to buy a new one.<<<

      I don't think that's ever been the case, Apple or otherwise, so bit of a straw man argument really!

      1. Dave 126 Silver badge

        Re: Eh?

        > because someone seems to have started making machines that cannot be user serviced, or upgraded at all, so they go obselete very quickly

        Obsolete? Really? Through the nineties and into the early 2000s it was sensible to buy a new desktop for around £1000, because the software and new uses would mean that more CPU, RAM and HDD was always desirable, not to mention having to add stuff like soundcards, CD-ROMs and scanner cards (IRQs, joy). In the mid 2000s, there just wasn't that much that more power would do for the general user, since by then a £500 (or cheaper) machine could happily do all the email, DTP, image editing, web-browsing and DVD playback that a general user would need.

        My laptop was bought several years ago, and still performs excellently for CAD and the like. It could always be faster on a render or whatever (and an SSD wouldn't hurt it), but it is very far from being obsolete.

        1. alan buxey

          Re: Eh?

          you seem to have misplaced the argument. you've stated exactly the point - the laptop you bought several years ago CAN be upgraded to give it some more relevance years later...SSD, maybe more memory...use a PCCard adapter or such for new connectivity. you cant do that with some recent devices...particularly fruity firm devices - the iPad and Macbook Air spring to mind here.

          1. Stevie

            Re: Eh?

            "the laptop you bought several years ago CAN be upgraded to give it some more relevance years later"

            Not so. You'll be lucky if the new devices like SDD are supported by the interfaces available on your old motherboard.

            Ask me how I know this, me being in the IT lark and having spec'd several home machines for this fabled ability to upgrade and extend the life thereby.

            1. Observer1959

              Re: Eh?

              Well apparently just about any old Apple product with an SATA connection can have an SSD. This is one of the biggest boost to speed along with more memory. I've added both these to an older MBP and it's like a new machine.


              All Mac Pro models

              • All PowerMac G5 models

              • All MacBook Pro models

              • All Mac mini 2006-Current (All Intel Models)

              • iMac 2006-current (All Intel Models)

              • iMac G5

              • All MacBook models

              • Xserve 2009

          2. Lusty

            Re: Eh?

            "you cant do that with some recent devices...particularly fruity firm devices - the iPad and Macbook Air spring to mind here."

            And you can't fit that old upgradeable laptop through a gap 8mm wide. Consumers have voted with their feet, and although several people are very bitter that they are not on the winning side, that doesn't change the fact that the rest of us voted for portability.

            Yes, your shitty old laptop is more usable now you fitted an SSD, but my iPad Air is more usable because I have it with me. Win for the iPad.

            Yes, your shitty old laptop is upgradeable so you can keep on flogging that dead horse, but my MacBook Air doesn't cause permanent damage to my back while carrying it in a bag around London.

            Yes, you may be able to replace your old battery, but I don't even need to carry the power supply because my modern devices last 12 hours with constant use while yours, even with your new battery and hours of cocking around with settings and stopping services, probably lasts "up to 4 hours" which we all know means 2 hours of actually using it.

            No I can't upgrade my stuff, but it's so much nicer that I'm not bothered by that at all and will continue to buy the new versions while selling the old ones for slightly less than I paid a couple of years later - I lost around £100/year on the old iPad which works out at pennies per hour of usage. You may think I hate the environment, but in that time you've probably binned a lot more kit than I have!

        2. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: Eh?

          I was just saying that computers don't "go obsolete very quickly" these days. Specialist users (gamers, editors, animators, scientists, traders) will always gain benefit from more power (and thus easy upgrades), but average users can do all they need on modestly specced machines, and on most software they won't even notice much of a difference.

          They won't, until Microsoft decide that Word needs the return of Clippy, but this time raytraced in real-time and composited against a 4K video live stream.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Eh?

      @Eddie D - >"I don't remember that time at all - I've still got a late 90s vintage Macbook G3 and a couple of iBooks, a few ancient Latitudes"

      Well - I have tons of old equipment laying around. Most of it still works, if I bother with it. But one thing I don't do - I don't memorize the names and the specs as if they were some glorious gifts from the Gods. And believe it or not - some of that old gear I have in storage is even Apple gear. And I couldn't honestly tell you the name or the model number of ANY of it. If I need to find a driver, I can go to the device and read the model number from the sticker or from the etching.

      I guess that's a big part of the difference between "Fanbois" and everyone else who uses tech to get work done, not to try to be hip. And a big part of the difference between those who religiously purchase every device from one company, and those who buy the best tool for the job.

      1. returnmyjedi

        Re: Eh?

        Just to check, I've powered up an old IBM ThinkPad sporting a 486 DX4 and Windows 98 SE. The battery no longer works, but I'm typing this post on the whirring old thing. I may even try and get X-Wing running on it (the only game I still have the floppies for).

        Take that lawyer scum!

      2. Robert Taylor

        Re: Eh?

        > But one thing I don't do - I don't memorize the names and the specs as if they were some glorious gifts from the Gods.

        So you have a poor memory. That doesn't seem a good reason to bash someone for being specific in their post.

        1. Darryl

          Re: Eh?

          Just what I was thinking, Robert. "The OP has a better memory than me, so he must be a fanboi." and he didn't even pick up on Eddie's mention of, gasp, Latitudes!

        2. John Bailey

          Re: Eh?

          Umm.. Actually I think the concept he was trying to get across is that he has this thing called a life.

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Eh?

          @Robert Taylor - "So you have a poor memory. That doesn't seem a good reason to bash someone for being specific in their post."

          My memory is fantastic. But I don't stuff it full of useless data - like the name of the laptops I was buying 15 years ago. Or even 4 years ago. Or the model numbers of parts I used to build workstations with. If I need to know the name, I go and look at it. I don't recall the exact name of the phone in my pocket right now - I know it's a Sammy Android with a slider keyboard - because I work better with a keyboard. I don't recall the version of Android it's running - I don't give a crap unless I need to load an app that won't work with that version. And if I do need to know, I look it up on the phone.

          What I DO remember is the enormous amount of work I've done with those machines over the years. I've bled most of them dry.

          And I don't stick with one company religiously. I'm typing on a new HP laptop right now, and I've got a Sammy Android in my pocket. I built my workstation. My last laptop was a Dell, and my last phone was a Blackberry. And I can almost guarantee you my next ones won't be the same. I buy the best deal that will do the job for me the best at the time. That's the only thing that matters to me - getting the job done at a decent price. I don't care if anyone is impressed with the gear I'm using.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Eh?

      Downvoted for saying something positive about Apple products...

  4. Toothpick

    The tick list

    Peak Apple: check

    Fondleslab: check

    Fanbois: check

    Fruity Firm: check

    Written by: enough said.

    I do like iAcolytes though

    1. sabroni Silver badge

      You forgot

      Butthurt fanbois posting snarky comments: check

  5. dave 93

    A bit harsh

    "few cosmetic changes and some minor weight loss."

    New 64bit architecture, and a 33% weight reduction are significant updates however prejudiced one may choose to be.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: A bit harsh

      So it's significantly lighter and thinner, 64 bit processor so potentially much faster, same battery life - sounds pretty good to me. I would not call the older model being about a third heavier as minor weight loss.

      Basically it's the best tablet available for most people unless you really have some major issue with Apple / iOS or do not want to spend as much.

      1. Brenda McViking

        Re: A bit harsh

        Repeat after me: "64-bit architectures have NOTHING to do with speed"

        If anything, they're slower than their 32-bit counterparts, due to having to process more bits for a given calculation. Unless you're doing lots of double-precision floating point analyses, their use is somewhat limited in a tablet.

        1. Brenda McViking

          Re: A bit harsh

          Go on then, downvoters, prove me, and my electronics degree modules in computer architecture wrong. Last time I checked this was a tech site.

          Why does 64 bit mean faster? It doesn't. It allows you to address more memory (last time I checked no tablets had 4GB RAM.) And unless you're doing CFD, CAD, HPC-grade analyses like weather prediction, stress analysis, or things like desktop-level gaming then you're not going to see the benefits in terms of the added double-precision calculation capacity that 64 bit offers over 32 bit.

          Yes yes, those articles quoted are about the 5S. The A7 chip in that is the same architecture as the iPad Air.

          1. Mtech25
            IT Angle

            Re: A bit harsh

            This is an apple on el reg don't expect little things like logic to matter when you are fighting for you favorite brand.

          2. Joerg

            Re: A bit harsh

            @Brenda McViking: so you clearly did steal any IT degree you could have got. Because you just know nothing about basic CPU architecture and logic.

          3. Tom 13

            Re: Why does 64 bit mean faster? It doesn't.

            If it's a full 64-bit architecture instead of a 64-bit processor on a 32-bit bus it does necessarily mean faster because you load 64-bits into the processor with one read cycle instead of 2. That's why 64-bit didn't make a hell of a lot of sense when Intel and MS released them for XP on 32-bit motherboards.

            I'll agree it doesn't necessarily affect the perceived user speed because we long ago passed the point where the desktop CPU is idling at 80-90% most of the time for a typical user. But the system itself is still faster. You also get into issues with coders compiling stuff for 32-bit and running the 32-bit on top of the 64-bit with an emulator between the two, which will slow down the perceived speed. Again, that's not the hardware being slower.

          4. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: A bit harsh

            29 upvotes for that? Obviously not from the technical readers of the site.

            A 64 bit architecture does mean that you can address more memory but it also, just as importantly, means that you can move twice as much data per clock cycle around the system as you did with a 32 bit architecture. That means, with a machine that is very much attuned to photography and video that you can move photos and videos around twice as fast; process them twice as fast and generally speed up many operations where moving large amounts of data around is important.

            I hope you don't belong to the more recent university cohorts who had to pay for their degrees. You don't seem to have got your money's worth.

        2. Kristian Walsh

          @Brenda - Re: A bit harsh

          Actually, ARM is quite good at 64-bit transparency: 32-bit code doesn't appear to have a penalty, but it is hard to tell when all you can do is compare first-attempt (okay, second-attempt, but Apple's is the first in a client) implementations of ARMv8 with mature, optimised ARMv7 implementations.

          That said, I completely agree with you that 64-bit isn't a big performance deal. I've written a lot of code over the last 25 years, for a lot of very varied application areas, and my gut feeling is that outside of scientific modelling, integer maths accounts for the bulk of most applications' calculations (remember that GPUs handle the floating-point for 3D transformations). Of that, I'd guess that 99% can be be accommodated by 32 bit registers. The big performance benefit of 64-bit, that of being able to access more than 4 Gbyte of address space, isn't a whole lot of use on a device with such constrained resources as a tablet. (To be clear, I still think 64 bit is of incredible benefit on desktops and servers, but they have more memory, more storage, and run applications that work with bigger datasets than a tablet.)

          Basically, being 64-bit isn't why ARMv8 chips like the A7 are better than their predecessors, but I suppose it's the easiest "this number is bigger" feature for a marketing department to work with, and in the inevitable absence of market-changing new features to trumpet at every iteration, Apple have now joined the tech industry numbers game instead: lighter - nice, more pixels - okay, but... twice as much "bit" as the competition?? Only the first two provide a customer benefit. As a customer, why should I care how wide the ALUs are? it doesn't add anything that will benefit me now, or in the lifetime of the device. It's a willy-waver feature; a bigger number buyers can use when someone challenges your choice of product.

          Nor does it mean the device will be faster or better than the competition. Right now, I think a good ARMv7 implementation can still beat an ARMv8 chip, simply because v8 is new, and the vendors are still getting to grips with it. But as the same optimisation is applied to the newer architecture by vendors, we'll see v8 pull ahead.

          But again, that performance gain will still have very little to do with it having 64-bit addressing. Not on a tablet, running tablet applications.

          1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

            Re: @Brenda - A bit harsh

            For some reason I've been down-voted on this in the past, but my opinion on 64 bit in phones / tablets is that in the future it will enable some much more efficient usage of storage (aka unified storage). Getting everything prepared for the future is a good thing. Yes, the marketing idiots and trolls here will shout about it being great, but it doesn't make a squat of difference other than the ARM chips in use are rather faster and more efficient than the previous ones... it's just that they happen to be 64bit as well.

            When you have 2GB of RAM in a device, 32 bit addressing is fine and efficient. However even these current devices usually have access to 32/64/128GB of additional storage. Storage is changing (see today's El Reg article on memristor future 100TB storage products) and the differentiation between volatile storage such as RAM and non-volatile storage such as Flash storage is lessening to the point that it many cases it will make a lot more sense to consider the non-volatile storage not as a traditional storage medium but part of the addressable space of the processor. Apple, with their closed shop approach, are in a much better position than other vendors to take advantage of this and the efficiency gains it will give. That's for the future though, for now it's the improved chip rather than it being 64bit that's most important.

          2. Sander van der Wal

            Re: @Brenda - A bit harsh

            Sitting behind a desk watching a computer screen doesn't make the computer more powerful.

        3. messele

          Re: A bit harsh

          64-bit processors are slower than 32-bit because they have to process more bits for a given calculation? Wut? By that statement 16-bit processors must fly!

          You do realise that mantissas are processed in parallel and therefore for 'up to' single precision numbers processing would take exactly the same time (given otherwise identical architecture).

          For numbers of 32^1 +1 or larger (it's really not that big of a number, people always focus on 2^64 as being humungous but that's a smokescreen, 32-bit processors struggle just as much at 4.2... billion remember that's where the 32-bit TCP/IP address system crapped out).

          In any case the architecture is much improved so there are advantages across the board, the only disadvantage is the memory required to store data, pointers etc. if coding isn't tight for SP numbers.

          Ignorance is not an excuse to spread crap regarding the advantages of 64-bit architecture just because you are not onboard yet. Embrace the future.

          1. Kristian Walsh

            Re: A bit harsh

            "Ignorance is not an excuse to spread crap".

            I agree. Please stop.

          2. Richard Plinston

            Re: A bit harsh

            > By that statement 16-bit processors must fly!

            I can tell that for certain operations the 8088 on the original IBM PC (and others) was slower than the 8085 and Z80s.

            In particular, byte write operations required the 16 bit word to be fetched, the byte changed and the 16 bit word rewritten (otherwise the 'other' byte on the 16bit bus would be lost) while the 8bit machines just wrote the single byte.

        4. Joerg

          Re: A bit harsh

          @Brenda McViking: you clearly have no clue what you are talking about. You should try studying a bit of basic CPUs design and architecture before going around writing nonsense like that, the opposite of truth.

        5. druck Silver badge
          Thumb Down

          Re: A bit harsh

          The 64bit ARM is no slower or faster working with 64bit registers than 32bit. The advantage comes from having twice as many registers in 64bit mode, for compilers to take advantage of.

        6. Vic

          Re: A bit harsh

          > "64-bit architectures have NOTHING to do with speed"

          Unles you're doing SIMD calculations. The extra word length means more operations per clock. But I'd expect that to be a small minority of most users' work...

          > If anything, they're slower than their 32-bit counterparts

          Most CPUs suffer from bandwidth restriction to RAM. The more bits you have to load up for a given routine, the longer it takes to get into your CPU. Cache only goes so far befoer it's full...


      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Basically it's the best tablet available for most people

        So how come they're not flying off the shelves? Could all those 5 star reviews be wrong?

        1. Frank Bough

          Re: Basically it's the best tablet available for most people

          who told you they weren't?

          1. Dave 126 Silver badge

            Re: Basically it's the best tablet available for most people

            The 64bit processor will have more relevance in a couple of years time, but it makes sense for Apple to introduce it now so that by then most of their iDevice range will be using it, making software development easier.

            1. IAmTheMillipede

              Re: Basically it's the best tablet available for most people

              "The 64bit processor will have more relevance in a couple of years time, but it makes sense for Apple to introduce it now so that by then most of their iDevice range will be using it, making software development easier."

              Ermmm.... What?

              As a developer for some 30 years now, let me assure you the transition from compiling for 32 bit architecture to a 64bit one is literally changing one or two switches on your compiler (or clicking a button if you're using one of those new fangled GUIs). I have done literally dozens of "conversions" from 32 to 64 bit builds and never spent more than a couple minutes on it.

              Never in history has any corporation forced its customers to prepay for tech that does nothing for them, just to make clicking said button easier for developers. The situation with the apple products is simply this: the consulting firm Apple pays to develop their CPUs finished a 64 bit version and Apple decided it would make good marketing sense to throw it in now despite it actually being useless. From the silly nonsense I've heard spouting from the iHoles of their devoted, seems they were right.

            2. Michael 5

              Re: Basically it's the best tablet available for most people

              @Dave 126 - you are such a tosser!

              The A7 double the CPU scores of the previous chip (check our GeekBench). Couple that with OpenCL and you have the ability to really do some real if not serious computing.

              Consider this also... the A7 clobbers some of the recent Intel chips used by notebooks such as the Intel Core 2 Duo L9600 2130 MHz and the Intel Core 2 Duo P8600 2400 MHz. It also equals the Intel Core i7-2677M in its scoring.

              Tell me that its a worthless climb for a tablet to now better some recent notebooks.

    2. Tom 13

      Re: A bit harsh

      64-bit architecture is so 2007. This is 2013, closing in fast on 2014. If you're counting that as innovation, I think you need to revisit the dictionary. You should be able to find one online if you don't have a dead tree copy handy.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Apple can't win - they have stock and the device is not selling - they run out of stock and it's a conspiracy to try and drum up demand. People queue and they are muppets - people decide not to queue and of course it's not selling at all. You can't have it both ways... wait for the actual sales figures Apple publish after the first weekend and then the first quarter sales.

    Suspect the iPad Air will sell extremely well.

    1. Robert Grant Silver badge

      it's just become more like the iPhone; other than a bunch of weirdos who needwant to get the new one each time, most people will roll through the upgrade cycle every two or three years.

      1. Tom 13

        Re: most people will roll through the upgrade cycle

        except it's now every 3 to 5/7/9 years depending on tolerance levels.

        In fact it's scary to think that I'm still not thinking about replacing my hand-built desktop. I don't remember exactly what the date was on which I built it, but Vista had just been released and I mistakenly bought the 64-bit version (so I could address all the memory I was putting into the system) figuring I'd be building myself a gaming system that would last a few years. Turned out the gamers were still focused on 32-bit XP architecture. Even LOTR wouldn't load on my 64-bit system. Fortunately I dual installed 32-bit XP so it wasn't a total loss. But the Windows 7 partition is still serviceable for my uses. It turns out I'm not a big fan of MMOs after all, and they're pretty much the only call for a gaming rig.

  7. gerryg


    Probably because it's Friday but your article inspired me to rework Desmond Dekker's classic

    Get up in the morning slaving for bread, sir

    So every month can buy ipad

    For me iColyte

    My wife an' my kids them a pack up an' a leave me

    Darlin' she said, "I was yours to be seen"

    For me iColyte

    Shirt dem a tear-up trousers a go

    I don't want to end up with money and Android

    For me iColyte

    After a storm there must be a queue

    You catch me with a 4 but the 5 is new

    poor-a- poor, for me iColyte

    Ima wondering working for hard

    A-poor, a-poor, a-poor, me iColyte

    I look a-down and out, sir

    poor-a-poor, for me iColyte

    yeah, sorry about that

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    100 people

    Surface 2 would have sold out.

  9. jai

    at just under 100 as Apple prepared to open its doors at 9am.

    well that's the problem right there, they opened at 8am

    you're missing an hour's worth of people

    1. hplasm

      8am until 9am

      was spent in the nearest coffee shop, talking about the new iPad.

      And drinking latte.

  10. c-hri-s

    As an owner of some Apple kit (and and iPad 1 and iPad 2), as well as some Android kit (Nexus 4 phone) I sort of want a reason to upgrade .. but can't find one.

    I'm sat staring at my iPad 2 and never really worry it's not fast enough for what I want. Yes, the retina display is lovely when I look at my wife's iPad 3, but can I still read the screen? Yes.

    It's 33% lighter than then iPad 4, but remember the iPad 4 is heavier than the iPad 2 because of all the Retina stuff. Therefore the iPad Air is smaller than my 2, but not massively lighter.


    1. Mtech25

      Wow logic in an el reg apple thread

      are you on the right website, because here you are either a die hard apple fan that believe Apple can do not wrong and all that buy iGadgets are the chose people, or a die hard anti-apple fan that believe that apple can do no right and all that buy iGadgets are harbingers of the apocalypses.

  11. Frank Bough

    Err, I was just in there...

    ...and the queue was massive.

    1. Tom 13

      Re: Err, I was just in there...

      OK, the queue was massive. How many clerks did they have running the registers?

  12. William Donelson

    Not to mention resale value being quite amazing...

    My old WiFi-only iPad 3 selling on eBay now for £250 give or take some.

    1. hplasm


      My old WiFi-only iPad 3 listed on eBay now for £250 give or take some.

      Free postage.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: rather-

        "My old WiFi-only iPad 3 listed on eBay now for £250 give or take some.

        Free postage."

        I endorse this advert. Great seller. Five stars. Would buy again from this seller.

  13. e8hffff

    Tim Cook doesn't know how to swoon the audience, come customers.

    Where's the innovation like a stylus. Where's the Apple Glasses. Where's the iWatch, etc.

    How is Apple improving the creators and designers interaction with devices and content creation!

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Gimmicks not needed

    Hmmm let me think!

    Stylus = palm pilot, ipaq, hp jornada and most importantly etch-a-sketch knock offs, stylaphone (see Rolf Harris)

    Glasses = Sega Master System, Nintendo Virtual Boy, Kodak slide thingy, X-Ray specs in the Beano

    Watches = Calculator watch, radio watch, camera watch, remote controller watch, all worn by t$%^$rs

    I want something that works properly all the time and doesn't suck me into a space/time void where 2 minute anticipated task actually takes 2 hours because of updates, crashes and conflicts.

    Like it or not iPad was a game changer and as with many "FRUITY" products the benefits are often realised after they first come out. If 64 bit is so awful I might be able to interest you in a Z80 processor or a Viglen 386 with a Cyrix math-coprocessor or a Penny Farthing.

    1. James Hughes 1

      Re: Gimmicks not needed

      Indeed the iPad was a game changer. But the game has now changed. Now the iPad is similarly specc'd to many cheaper devices, and tablets are a commodity product. Now, the iPad is not really distinguishable from any other tablet.

      As for comments on getting work done, my £129 NookHD+ does everything I need, quickly and efficiently. It's never crashed and seems to update itself in the background without me noticing. I'd be hard pressed to say it was any worse or better than an iPad of whatever vintage.

      As for 64bit, you may get a slight performance increase in the right circumstances. But do tablets really need it? (Notwithstanding that, end of next year nearly everything will be 64 bit anyway due to marketing pressures, not because of any major advantage in using it)

    2. Darryl

      @AC 14:04 Re: Gimmicks not needed

      Yes, we know, they're all unneeded gimmicks. Until next year when Apple invents one or more of them, and then they'll be magical and innovative and never seen before, and Samsung will be accused of copying them.

      1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

        Re: @AC 14:04 Gimmicks not needed

        Re the other devices.

        Apple may not 'invent' them but if past evidence is anything to go by, they will make those devices practical to use whereas their forbears may not have been.

        Whilst I agree with the fandroids that their kit is in the main overpriced they do have an infuriating knack of taking something and applying a lot of design and thought into making said item work at least halfway decently. Whereas those have came before may well have been slightly clunky and a PITA to use.

        I am writing this post on a late 2007 17in MBP (Core 2 Duo CPU, matte screen). It has lasted longer than any other laptop I have ever owned. Yes it cost a lot back then, but the fact that I use ut every day 6 years later say something for the way Apple make stuff. I bought a Dell Inspiron about a year earlier. It died a long time ago. That said, the Thinkpad T43P that I bought second hand still runs RHEL 6.4 very nicely.

  15. hammarbtyp

    Innovation never stops

    My back of a fag packet calculation shows that at this rate of innovation by the 15th October 2020 IPads will weigh 0 grams. After that they will include iAntiGravity(Patent Pending)

  16. alpine

    New technology

    The real problem is that there is no new technology applicable in their market area that Apple can pretend to have invented.

    What would change the world of course is a viable high definition, daylight readable, colour display technology capable of use in the whole range of display sizes. OLED still seems a bit stuck in a time warp. Something NEW is needed...

    The more I think about it, the more I realise I won't be buying any new phone/laptop/tablet until this occurs. All that we now have are annual minor performance increments.

    And of course I'll skip the silly watches and glasses entirely.

  17. Occams_Cat

    Temporary monopolies. I'd consider moving that Apple stock in the not too distant future.

  18. Stevie


    Apple seem to think the cameras are much better in the new model. The weight saving seems a goal I can understand, if not understand the mania for. Thinness for its own sake would seem to be getting on a hiding to nowhere. Thinner=more fragile, no?

    Does buying the old model iPad make sense now? Is the price/quality of build ratio good? I can't tell from the buzz because of all the rabies infecting commentators.

    1. Martin

      Re: Bah!

      "Apple seem to think the cameras are much better in the new model."

      Doesn't matter if the camera is better. You're still going to look like a prat when you take the photo.

      1. Stevie

        Re: Bah!

        Yesyesyes, please get the shots next time. I agree that using an iPad as one's primary photographic capture device is as of now an amusing sight for onlookers, but then again, I still use a digital SLR and laugh at you dorks with your smartphoncams. I suspect in a few years you'll be less offended by slate wavers.

        To return to the question at hand, phrased so as to include your reservations: Would you look like a prat when teleconferencing with an iPad Air?

  19. csumpi


    If you camp out to buy anything other than bread, you are a freakin LOSER.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: LOSERS

      My local supermarket has a good supply of bread so I don't need to camp out

      1. ThomH

        Re: LOSERS (@AC)

        But have you heard about the really amazing new bread they're getting in next Wednesday?

      2. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

        Re: LOSERS

        The poster obviously wants to return to the final days of the USSR empire when all the shops were perpetually empty.

        Right on Comrade!

  20. W.O.Frobozz

    History repeats

    Hey I remember another company named after a fruit that kept on releasing marginally different versions of the exact same thing over and over again...

    Welcome to your Blackberry years, Apple. It's a pretty long fall from here.

    1. ThomH

      Re: History repeats

      I think the difference is that BlackBerry were overtaken by technology — everyone else's products were much better while they ran around buying QNX and desperately trying to get BlackBerry 10 ready. The same isn't true of Apple. A majority of people prefer alternatives and there are a bunch of things Apple consciously disallows but you don't get the sense that they're technologically behind. They're just control freaks with very specific ideas of what a device should be.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Pricey but worth it

    When the screen on my MacBook Air broke (cracked somehow) I was quoted around £380 by Apple to repair it because you have to replace the whole top unit of the laptop, I figured it made more sense to simply buy a new another laptop. That's the price you pay for making things thin and light.

    That said though, the MacBook Air is a great laptop and I think it's very good value for money, my previous Dell was plagued by overheating issues.

    I'm looking to get an iPad Air, but only because I currently have the 1st gen iPad and think it's time for an upgrade. The other person I know looking to get one is only buying it as it is her first iPad, she previously had a Galaxy Tab

  22. Rizzla

    No queue in Milton Keynes

    No trouble at all getting MK iPad Air 128GB this morning in MK. No queue mid-morning and no trouble with stock. 'Queue Here' barriers were in place but looked like some new piece of modern sculpture......standing all alone in the walkway.

    Replacing a very slow iPad 1st Gen. The improvement is significant, but at that price it damned well should be!

  23. Sampson

    What's Cynical?

    It's not cynical to make money by updating and selling an existing product. That's called business and businesses that don't do that aren't noble, they're stupid. I would suggest that a better example of cynical is framing every article about Apple in the same negative fashion with little insight into the nature of the business of making and selling hardware and software products. Part of the reason your Apple related articles seem so stale is that you probably wrote several dozen in advance and set up an automatic posting to occur whenever any bit of Apple news hits the inter webs. Here's a bit of insight for you. Magic doesn't happen every day. If it did, it wouldn't be magic.

  24. Neil Anderson

    "I remember old laptops, which used to break every year, so you needed to buy a new one...."

    Should have bought a Mac. I'm still using my 15-inch PowerBook purchased in 2001.

  25. Mitoo Bobsworth


    The last iMac was thinner - then came the iPad mini - now the iPad air. Don't despair folks, Apple is still at the cutting edge of innovation - they've found a way of selling less kit for your buck. The ultimate in marketing hubris would be the 'iZilch™ - it IS thin air' </sarc>

    P.S. - I do own & use a small selection of Apple kit on a daily basis, FYI.

    1. Intractable Potsherd

      Re: iNnovation?

      If kit* keeps getting any thinner, they certainly will be "cutting edge" ...

      *Not being partisan - the gallop towards thinness is bizarre and counter-productive. Give me kit with some heft that I can hold securely.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Next time I lose the best part of a third of my weight

    Remind me to call it a minor weight loss.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Healthy queues at Regent Street ..

    "We have all models of iPad Air in Space Gray and Silver" Apple's store manager told a relieved crowd. Apple store staff then handed out tickets to those in the queue for the iPad Air. These tickets ensure that people who queue get the right iPad. The ticketing system, introduced a few years ago during overwhelming queues for the iPhone, also ensures that all people who queue know they are getting a device."

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Tablets aren't the same as phones. Some people only use a phone, no laptop or tablet, so their phone is the most important thing.

  29. Robert Hancock

    The real problem

    El Reg got shafted by Apple a few years ago and they have never forgotten it.

    Every Apple review on El Reg since then has dripped with poison and bitterness. Keep up the lousy blog journalism guys and don't confuse yourself with the facts or truth.

  30. raving angry loony


    So El Reg trashes Apple when they have huge lineups and possibly deliberately induced shortages.

    Then trashes Apple when they have lots of stock and no lineups.

    Good work. I approve. Never give the suckers an even break.

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: entropy...

      If selling more devices in a weekend than MS has in a year is an artificial shortage then I have to wonder what the opposite might be? Selling one to everyone on the planet?

      Apple sell millions of items during the launch weekends. Most other manufacturers would give their eye teeth for sales volumes even 50% of what Apple achieve year on year.

      Fandrods really should get a dose of reality. Apple are not perfect by any means but a lot of companies can learn an awfu lot from them about product marketing and launches. (MS Are you listening?)

      1. raving angry loony

        Re: entropy...

        Whoa! Fanboi much? Frankly, comparing a company to Microsoft's hardware group to show off its success is kind of like comparing a live slug to a dead goat to proudly boast how one is much faster than the other.

        What part of "biting the hand that feeds IT" did you miss, fanboi? In my opinion they aren't doing that often enough, or hard enough. To me, today, the adage I first heard about 34 years ago is still true: all hardware sucks, all software sucks, the rest is strictly personal preference. El Reg is fairly good at showing that adage to be true (now and again, wouldn't do for them to get a swelled head).

  31. The Alpha Klutz

    we live at a time when 2 working adults cant support a family that 2 generations ago would have been supported by one. parents are forced to send their kids to expensive nurseries where their children are abused. the kids grow up never having spent any time talking to their own parents.

    but you can buy a new iPad so its ok for us to be treated like this by the powers that be. hand over your cash and forget about little johnny or jane being abused by the staff at the nursery where most of your wages are spent because society wont let you raise your own kid anymore. its the new world order baby.

  32. Tom 13

    Re: why the fruity firm can't be bothered doing anything new anymore.

    It's not just Apple, it's most of the tech industry. But a few moments of thought show the venom is misplaced.

    The root cause has been identified by many labels and sayings. Here are a few:

    - Diminishing returns

    - Law of 80/20

    - Sturgeon's observation

    Thirty years ago when Apple and MS were starting out and Altair was not yet a memory it was virgin territory with lots of opportunities for new concepts, mistakes and quick hacks that worked but weren't optimized. Now the broken concepts have mostly been disposed of, the opportunities most evaluated, and the math geeks have seriously optimized those quick hacks. With each new iteration of technology we've cleared the low hanging 80% that could be fixed. The 0.024759% on which we are working are just exponentially harder than those first iterations back in the good old days. In fact when you really think about it, making any improvement is really pretty amazing.

  33. Confuciousmobil

    It's obviously terrible

    El Reg and the Fandroids say so.

    Actual reviews such as disagree but I have learned from reading the well informed comments on here that a 64 bit chip is slower than a 32 bit chip and the weight loss is 'minimal' .

    If you are a Fandroids, fine, go and buy an Android tablet and phone.

    I will stick to Apple products because I, personally, like them and my foray into the world of Android was a horrifying experience (I gather this is not the case for most but it will take a lot for me to try it again)

    I, personally, can not justify upgrading from my iPad 3 to the Air but I am fairly certain that the next iPad will be enough of an improvement for me to upgrade.

    If Apple made massive improvements each year people would complain about obsolescence, the increment ale approach means my 'old' iPad is OK but after a few iterations I want to upgrade.

    Suits me.

  34. Windows8

    A little late to the game but

    Apple once again announces and releases what you'd expect....a lighter, thinner device with a little more speed. Moores law can guarantee that with each new release. Apple's lost it's mojo and now's the time for Windows to show what it can do.

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