New iPad 3 review
- Stunning screen
- Best app and AV stores
- Superb interface
- Not a huge leap from iPad 2
- Camera still awkward to use
New iPad 3: Dictation
Voice dictation is now supported wherever you see the virtual keyboard – tap the mic button, say your piece, tap it again and it’ll jot down your babble. It’s not Siri, so you can’t command it, or ask questions about the weather, or Thailand, but recognition is fairly accurate, though you will have to perform some manual editing, especially with longer messages.
Short replies or single sentences are generally free of error. We didn’t have any Geordies, Scousers or Glaswegians in our test labs but it coped with T3’s Rhi Morgan’s lilting Welsh tones perfectly well.
Find out how well the dictation is in our New iPad / iPad 3 Chinese whispers game (review continues after the video)
New iPad 3: Verdict
The new iPad 3 is an improved version of the best tablet on the market, which makes the new iPad our number 1 slate by default. We’ll see more true quadcore tablets from Apple’s rivals before 2013, and they might boast some snazzier features too, but what they won’t have is the might of the App Store behind them.
For us, that remains the prime reason why iPads sell loads and others don’t. It’s Apple’s trump card, its tech golden ticket, and Google and Microsoft will have to nail their digital lockers before seriously challenging. iPad 2 accessories are also forward-compatible, including Smart Covers, camera kit, AV adaptors and docks.
One paradoxical twist is that too much content could be a problem here. Retina-optimised apps, 1080p video and hi-res photos come in seriously hefty file sizes - Nicolas Winding Refn’ HD Drive movie comes in at more than 3Gb, for example.
As a result, the 16GB version (£399) sounds like a non-starter if you’re any kind of power user, meaning Apple will probably sell a lot more of the 64GB model (£559) – how upsetting for it. Yet even that could get eaten up fast, mind.
So, should you upgrade from iPad 2? Only if you want a clearer picture and slightly faster web browsing. Otherwise wait for the next iteration, which should also be compatible with UK 4G.
iPad 4 before Christmas, anyone?
The new iPad goes on sale at Apple's retail stores and the Apple Online Store (www.apple.com/uk) on Friday March 16 at 8am.
New iPad 3 price: 16Gb Wi-Fi - £399, 32Gb Wi-Fi - £479, 64Gb Wi-Fi - £559. 16Gb Wi-Fi + 4G - £499, 32Gb Wi-Fi + 4G - £579, 64Gb Wi-Fi + 4G - £659