It’s that time again: the pre-release excitement from an Apple product in the US while we Irish can only wait and fantasise until it comes our way, but at least we have some videos showing us exactly what we’re missing.
When it goes on sale on Saturday 3 April in all 221 Apple retail stores and most Best Buy stores around the US, the iPad (which the Apple press release twice referred to as ‘magical’, by the way) will come loaded with seven apps that we are already familiar with on the iPhone.
So with Mail, Safari, Photos, Videos, YouTube, iPod and iTunes aside, the brand new apps are iBooks, Keynote, Pages and Numbers.
The iBooks e-book app, which combines Apple’s iBookstore, will also be available on Saturday as a free download but for the iPad only.
Keynote, Pages and Numbers – the productivity suite originally for the Mac but now completely re-designed as standalone iPad apps will be paid for and Apple has not mentioned if they will be ready to download from the App Store on Saturday or not.
Video demonstrations of how all 11 apps will look and behave on the iPad are on the Apple site.
The iBooks app opens up to a virtual wooden bookshelf where your downloaded books are displayed. On choosing a book, it opens up to fill the entire screen and the animated pages for flipping through the book appear quite natural and realistic.
Both font size and type can be changed within all books and Apple explains that the backlit screen will automatically adjust to ambient lighting conditions, thus addressing the eye strain concerns by those who feel e-ink e-book readers are possibly a better option.
Your book can be displayed in landscape mode, also for viewing two pages side by side, and if you don’t want screen mode flipping between the two you can lock the orientation with the slide lock button on the side.
Ireland is not included in the late April launch for regions including Australia, Asia and Europe, and an Apple spokesperson told Gadgetrepublic.com that "At this point we haven’t confirmed availability for Ireland".
By Marie Boran