While Apple’s third-generation iPad was released to much fanfare earlier this year, another iPad release has been brought to the market with almost no notice, CNET reports.
It’s an internally modified variation on the older iPad 2, priced lower than the new iPad at $399. The modifications can, in some cases, improve on battery life, the story reports.
The piece reports: “Among those iPad 3 models is a variant, the ‘iPad 2,4,’ that sports a more advanced 32-nanometer version of the dual-core Apple A5 series chip, according to chip review site Anandtech. (The older iPad 2 uses an A5 based on a lagging-edge 45-nanometer manufacturing process.)
“And an A5 built on a more advanced manufacturing process yields improved battery life, according to tests done by the site.”
The Anandtech report is quoted as saying: "The iPad 2,4’s gains in battery life … are significant. We measured a 15% increase in our web browsing battery life, a nearly 30% increase in gaming battery life and an 18% increase in video playback battery life." The results compare the 2,4 with the iPad 2 with the older A5 chip.
The piece notes, however, that the iPad 2,4 is hard to find. The Anandtech report, written by Anand Lal Shimpi, concludes: "If you’re in the market for an iPad 2, the 2,4 is clearly the one to get — if you can find one that is."
CNET adds: “The only way to know for sure is to open up the box. The iPad 2 variant may have iOS 5.1 preloaded. The older iPad 2 models — which Apple still has in inventory and continues to sell — may have 5.0.1 or older, Shimpi said. But the most accurate way to find out is by using a utility like Geekbench that will indicate whether it’s the iPad 2,4, Shimpi said.”