More accessories are on the way from Apple to complement the full range of iOS products with Lightning dock connectors. One highlight is an update to the power adapter shipped with the Retina display iPad and iPad mini.
In order to meet the battery life demands on these power-hungry mobile devices, Apple has been forced to increase the capacity of built-in lithium-ion batteries. The new power adapter provides 12W instead of the previous version with only 10W of juice.
Starting on May 16 the USPS will ban all international shipments of lithium batteries for safety reasons. Although device manufacturers such as Apple ship their products with a limited charge to help prevent incidents, used iPads and other items shipped by consumers can be dangerous depending on a variety of factors.
Lithium batteries have been responsible for several fires on passenger airplanes and are blamed for two fatal cargo plane crashes in the past five years. As Fast Company points out, the ban will have the largest impact on military members serving overseas. Although FedEx offers delivery service to APO, FPO and DPO addresses, lithium batteries are not allowed.
Thanks to a smaller 32-nm die shrink of the A5 iPad 2 processor, the device consumes noticeably less power. MacRumors points out that the iPad2,4 has been used as a test bed for next generation chip processes. In contrast, the iPad 3 A5X continues to be produced using a 45-nm process.
The new iPad 2 models have identical performance characteristics, however they clock battery life of 15-30 percent longer than their 45-nm cousins. The iPad 2 is now available new from Apple for $399, although older 45-nm stock is still being sold.
Apple confirmed today that "overcharging" the new iPad will not destroy the device. CNBC’s John Fortt and other Apple blogs previously reported that charging your new iPad after the screen indicates 100% "could harm the longevity of the battery." Apple told AllThingsD that the iPad 3 does display a 100% charge before reaching maximum capacity, but added that all Apple devices do this.
Apple VP Michael Tchao said that the new iPad will continue to charge to 100% before discharging a small amount. The device will then repeat this process until it's unplugged. “That circuitry is designed so you can keep your device plugged in as long as you would like,” Tchao said. “It’s a great feature that’s always been in iOS.”
Now that the new iPad has been put through its paces, there have been reports that iOS 5.1 is not accurately reporting battery charge percentage. ZDNet has even said the battery algorithm is "busted" while other reports have warned against overcharging the device. For those who are worried about damaging their batteries, rest assured that the iPad is not destroying its own battery.
First of all, every iOS device will report a 100% charge while leaving room to spare. This keeps the lithium-ion batteries optimized. The iPad 3 battery is massive, clocking 42.5-watt-hours compared to the iPad 2's battery at just 25-watt-hours. As a result, iOS may be reporting the new iPad battery as fully charged when in fact it's only at 90% capacity.
In an early iPad 3 review TechCrunch noted that the new iPad takes longer to charge and heats up after prolonged use.
"One other slight downside which I have to assume is related to either the battery or the LTE functionality is that unlike previous iPad models, the new iPad does get noticeably warm in the lower left corner after prolonged use. "
The reviewer made it clear that the iPad only gets warm, not hot, but some iPad 3 owners are already complaining that the tablet is getting too uncomfortable to hold while watching movies or playing games.
A thread on the MacRumor forums seems to confirm that the iPad 3 is warming up in the lower left corner when used for an extended amount of time. Some believe this is due to the 4G LTE, or the stronger battery Apple added to handle the power hungry iPad 3 features.
The third generation iPad is bigger, badder and more power hungry than the iPad 2. All its new features like Retina Display, LTE and extra RAM are great, but they require more battery consumption to operate. Apple did an amazing job of giving the new iPad the same amount of battery life (about 10 hours) as the iPad 2, but does the massive new 11,666mAh battery take longer to charge? According to an early review from TechCrunch it does.
"So how was Apple able to keep the battery life the same while adding LTE and without drastically changing the design? It appears that they’ve had a fairly major breakthrough in their battery technology. While the new battery clearly isn’t much bigger than the old one, it can hold much more juice (42 watt-hours versus 25-watt-hours). The downside of this is that I’ve found it takes quite a bit longer to charge the new iPad. As in several hours — you’ll probably want to do it overnight."
The iPad 3's battery life might not seem impressive at first, but it's a really significant improvement for Apple. Normally Apple fans look for increased performance from their next generation devices, however, the iPad 3 has the same battery life as the iPad 2 (around 10 hours). This may seem like a step backwards, but Apple managed to increase the iPad 3's battery to 11,666mAh, compared to the iPad 2’s 6994mAH.
The iPad 3 features four times as many pixels, 4G LTE and more power hungry features than the iPad 2. Yet the improved battery offers the same amount of usage as the older device without drastically increasing the new iPad's size. Not a bad achievement! The iPad 3 may not feature 3D feel displays or other gimmicky features like Siri, but its new battery capacity proves that Apple is working hard to improve their devices.
"Thinner and Lighter" seems to be the new buzz words when it comes to next generation Apple devices. Which is kind of funny when you think about it. Manufacturers worked so hard to shrink down mobile devices only to have Apple enlarge the iPhone with the introduction of their first tablet. Now a report from the Taiwan Economic News claims that the iPad 3 will feature a thinner and lighter battery.
The new battery will have a longer service life and is supposed to go into production next year. Simplo Technology Co. and Dynapack International Technology Corp will be producing the battery packs at a slight increase in price. According to 9to5Mac the new packs will cost 20% and 30% more than what the iPad 2 offers.
We're giving away more great accessories! ZAGG keeps your iPad and other mobile devices charged on-the-go with the ZAGGsparq 2.0 portable USB charger. When fully charged, the ZAGGsparq can recharge an iPhone four times or bring a dead iPad up to a 60 percent charge. When it comes to backup power, the ZAGGsparq extends iPad video playback time by five or six hours over the iPad battery alone.
An optimized USB port provides support for devices such as the iPad and iPhone that support optimized charging. For other devices, a secondary USB port is configured for the standard USB specification. The ZAGGsparq 6,000 mAh lithium polymer battery with LED indicator lights comes in a compact form factor measuring 3.5 by 3.5 inches. Use it to keep your iPad, iPhone, iPod and other electronic devices powered up when away from an outlet.