back to article Fanboi-and-fanfare-free fondleslabs fail to fire imagination

Here's something new from Apple: a product launch without a queue, excited fanbois or, indeed, much enthusiasm at all. The launch is question was that of the iPad Air 2 iPad Mini 3, both of which quietly slipped into Apple stores late last week. As is Vulture South's custom, we dropped into our friendly neighbourhood Apple …

  1. Ralph B


    Ah, so that's why iOS 8 had to make the user experience on my iPad 2 so bad! It's to make the iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini 3 user experience look good in comparison!

    Funnily enough, it made me take a look at Android tablets instead, but I ended up buying a touch-screen Chromebook. I recommend it.

    1. Rufus McDufus

      Re: Ah!

      iOS 8 has ruined my iPad Air 1 and the 2 as well judging by all the complaints on the Apple forums.

    2. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: Ah!

      Well done!

      you have moved from the apple Walled Garden to the google Advertising and data slurping one. Ok, it has slightly lower walls but Google will now know an awful lot more about you. That data is power to them which they will sell.

      If you however wiped the OOTB software and installed a proper Linux go to the top of the class and get 5 gold stars.

      1. dogged

        Re: Ah!

        > If you however wiped the OOTB software and installed a proper Linux

        on your iPad...

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Apple Store iPad mini

      Just go and click on the compare iPads button.

      The iPad mini with retina screens are identical in everything except the finger print reader.

      Unless you are a diehard fanboi there is really no reason to upgrade.

      As to iOS 8 it works fine on the old first generation IPad with retina screen so again no reason to upgrade.

      I'd also stick to the older smaller screened iPhones unless you really need a bigger screen.

      1. Adam McCormack

        Re: Apple Store iPad mini

        >>"As to iOS 8 it works fine on the old first generation IPad with retina screen so again no reason to upgrade."

        Was that the first, first generation, or the 2nd attempt at the 3rd generation? or the 4th generation?

  2. GregC

    Life expectancy & diminishing returns...

    are the major factors here, surely? People expect a tablet to last a while, so the replacement timescales are closer to a laptop than a phone, and when the improvements have become as incrementally small as they have the incentive to upgrade isn't there anyway.

    The processor may be "twice as fast" as the previous model but if, in the real world, this isn't actually noticeable then why bother?

    Oh, and this isn't just true of Apple gear - this is the first year I haven't seen any need to update either of my Nexus devices. Both the 5 and 10 continue to perform very well, and having put Lollipop on the 5 it's almost like having a new phone anyway. From a hardware perspective at least, it definitely feels like we've got to the point of rapidly diminishing returns.

  3. Andy E

    Whats next?

    I do wonder what the next big major development for the tablet will be. The iPad has been a huge commercial success but its development appears to have stalled. You can stick more memory in the thing and a faster CPU and possibly a better display but its essentially the same thing. Both Microsoft’s and some of Google’s offerings have better keyboard support but that’s hardly earth shattering. Perhaps the fondleslab has reached its peak and the next big tech must have thing will be something else?

    Where's my watch?

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: Whats next?

      Since the apps are almost all on the level of children's games (same goes for Android), and you can't get much real work done, what's next will obviously be Windows and Linux (Ubuntu or distros with KDE Plasma) fighting for control of the tablet market. As anyone could have predicted 5 years ago.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well I'm happy

    This weekend I got a new iPad Air 2 to replace my original (nearly three years old) iPad which had of late become extremely sluggish even after a reset and re-install - I suspect bloat and resource demands of the later editions of IOS. The improvement in performance, screen quality and size may be marginal when compared to the original iPad Air, but as an upgrade from the Mk1 device it is (dare I channel Sir Clive) a quantum leap :-)

    1. Mike Bell

      Re: Well I'm happy


      I upgraded from an ancient iPad. The speed bump is phenomenal.

      I can understand that, in a shop, it looks fairly much like any other iPad, and why wouldn't it, it's a minimalist device? But the additional grunt, RAM and Touch ID sensor are very welcome upgrades IMO.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Well I'm happy

      As was pointed out when Sir Clive originally brought out the Sinclair QL, a quantum leap would be a very, very tiny leap indeed.

      I would seem from the reviews you are correct.

    3. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: Well I'm happy

      as an upgrade from the Mk1 device it is (dare I channel Sir Clive) a quantum leap

      Inasmuch as iPad releases are discrete, and there is thus no continuum of iPad releases, how can it be anything but?

      "This is the iPad √2. It's a bit better than the iPad π/3."

  5. JDX Gold badge

    They're incremental updates

    Adding the finger-print doodah is the one real change, because Air and Mini-retina were the big upgrades... we don't NEED another big one. I don't think even Apple expect people to upgrade every generation, this is just keeping the lineup fresh.

  6. Identity


    What did you expect?

  7. i like crisps

    Did El Reg try and bend one?

    You must have been tempted?

  8. Tom 38

    Its a tablet

    in various different shapes and sizes. What were you expecting it to do?

    1. i like crisps

      Re: Its a tablet


  9. Shane Sturrock

    Evolution of the device

    I still have an iPad 1 which I use daily because it happens to sit nicely on my cross trainer. I also have an iPad mini 1 which also suits my needs and while it was horrible upgraded to iOS 8, a full wipe and install and then putting back the apps I actually wanted fixed it right up. I've noticed a reticence to rotate the screen so I suspect this is an issue with iOS 8 rather than anything specific to any of the iPads.

    I'll likely replace my current mini in another year or so once it reaches three years old which seems about right. The original iPad got so many things right, a giant change isn't needed, just a natural evolution of performance and additional features. The main difference is the software in the app store - when I got my iPad 1 there wasn't much about but it quickly appeared. Android is still behind the game and Windows tabs are miles back. The market is maturing and the iPad is still selling well because it is still the best choice.

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