On the eve of the iPad 2 event tomorrow, I wanted to share a few things I hope to see in the iPad 2. Myself and others from the SlashGear team will be in attendance to report and analyze all the details of the announcement. For now i'm throwing in my best guesses and hopes for the potentially magical new device.
I'm going to start with this one because I happen to be a performance junkie. While others may be happy with their current processors and question why they need more CPU power; I happen to always want more performance so I can try to push the limits of computing. I also enjoy seeing what the software community can do with more computing power.
Now we must take into consideration that more cores or more performance does not always equal a faster computer. Much of this does depend on the software. This is why in Apple's case i'm excited to see what their next generation iPad's, iPhone's and iPod Touches can do with more cores. Since Apple owns and develops one of the most critical pieces of software on any device, the operating system, they are in a unique position to optimize their iOS platform to any CPU they develop for maximum speed and efficiency. This is not a luxury many companies have and it happens to be one of Apple's most significant competitive advantages. For this reason and perhaps this reason alone I hope the iPad 2 has at least two cores. I would really love a quad-core iPad but that may be reaching.
Perhaps Apple will show off iOS 5.0 for iPad. If not at the very least i'm hoping for some new core apps developed by Apple specifically for the iPad. This could be new apps for media, like a new video or audio player. Perhaps an update to iBooks or a new magazine style app? The bottom line is we live in a world where software is becoming increasingly more important and in many cases more interesting than hardware advances. As much as we, the media and tech geeks, get excited about sleek and flashy hardware - it is the software that enables the hardware to shine.
Updates to Notifications
This qualifies as new software however the subject matter I felt required its own point. Having an iPhone and a slew of the latest Android devices with me at all times it is clear that Android for the time being has Apple beat with notifications. I love notifications on Android, I find them incredibly useful. Apple has lots of opportunity to make advancements to its notification system.
We covered an off market app several days ago called MobileNotifier that was a pristine example of how great notifications can be with iOS. I am hoping Apple understands this and continues to use their expertise in usability to create a truly great notification and alert system that they and their developer community can utilize for their advantage.
A Front and Rear Facing Camera
This may very well be one of the more obvious feature advancements we can expect. Primarily because it is clear that Apple wants to lead the way with visual communication so why not advance that into all their products. Again we must hope for great software to take advantage of whatever optics Apple puts on the front or the back. Especially when it comes to the back, if there is such a feature.
I personally want a great video editing application on my iPad. I am surprised that iMovie is not available for the iPad. Touch computing, which the iPad enables, is one of the most intuitive ways to operate and use a device. I tend to think that editing and creating a movie would be equally intuitive in a touch environment.
Partially this is also a selfish request because my 8yr old daughter has expressed interest in making movies and the mouse and keyboard is still a little difficult for her to use efficiently. The iPad becomes perfect for this example but is yet to feature this level of sophisticated content creation with its touch platform. Hopefully tomorrow that will all change.
Less Dependency on the PC
Lastly i'd like to see Apple advance on the idea that the iPad can and should stand alone as a computing device. Now that AirPrint and AirPlay are integrated on the device, i'd like to see other features be built into the iPad that turn it into its own computing device. For example currently the philosophy is that the iPad needs to sync with a PC which is the media management hub. I'd like to see the iPad become more of a standalone device that is capable of managing media on its own without the need of a PC.
I truly believe these devices have an opportunity to replace traditional PC's for some folks and I would love to see more of that vision become a reality in this next version of the iPad and other tablets for matter.
Agree? Disagree? Have other features you want to see?