MacDirectory Magazine

Spring-Summer 2012

MacDirectory magazine is the premiere creative lifestyle magazine for Apple enthusiasts featuring interviews, in-depth tech reviews, Apple news, insights, latest Apple patents, apps, market analysis, entertainment and more.

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COMMENTARY IWARDS UPDATE: SPRING 2012 WORDS BY BILL TROOP "iPad 3" What everyone knows as the iPad 3, Apple has whimsically decided to call plain 'iPad'. The reason, Apple tells us, is to keep things simple. (By confusing everyone, right?) We wonder if that's the best way today's Apple can respond to the question 'What would Steve do?' On second thoughts, maybe that's a bad question. 'What would Walt do?' was what they used to ask at Disney. The next thing anyone knew, Steve Jobs owned Disney. Steve never asked what Walt would do. The iPad 3 is an incrediblyimportant product because its screen has the highest resolution (for its size) ever seen in a consumer device. Nice as that is for pictures and graphics, where the resolution boost comes into its own is with text. Bar none, the iPad 3 is the best electronic reader ever. It washes away the competition. It truly rivals book quality. The future is here and the future is good. We therefore unreservedly award the third generation iPad. This fabulous achievement has also created a bind for Apple: Apps that rely on bitmap images rather than vector images require l otsmore memory. How will Apple's app developers deal with this emerging problem in 2012? One thing we know already: despite a considerable boost in processing and graphics power, iPad 3 seems to run at about the same speed as iPad 2. Resolution is the culprit, and vector drawing is the solution. By the way, we wouldn't call it a Retina display, as Apple does. We prefer to reserve that term for displays that resolve 300 dpi or better. And the iPad resolves 264 dpi (dots per inch; or ppi: pixels per inch — same diff). By contrast, the Retina display on the 4th gen iPhone/iPod Touch really does reach a true 326 dpi. Nevertheless, as numerous pundits have already pointed out, the viewing distance for the iPad is greater, so the visual effect compared with the Retina iPhone is just about the same. Where to go next? Well . . . only what we've all been waiting for since the invention of the CRT: even higher resolution. 600 dpi would be better; 1200 dpi would be best. Right now, there's no personal computer processor that could deal with that much pixel density, even if the screen technology were cheaply available. But that's where the future lies. First, though, we need to see 300 dpi in laptops and desktop monitors. Several years ago, we castigated Apple for lagging way behind Dell in offering high resolution screens on Macbooks. It was an embarrassing situation of several years' standing, when Dell was unquestionably the dpi leader in portable displays. But Apple has more than made up for it now. Macbooks finally reached parity with Dell a couple of years ago, and the new iPhone and iPad have set new industry standards. We're all hoping for a radical refresh of the Macbook 109 MacDirectory

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