Apple [AAPL] has finally announced the Apple Tablet, and it is called the Apple iPad, and it designed to be a device between an iPhone and Laptop. The Apple iPad is designed to be used for email, web browsing, photos, video, music, games and eBooks, and as you can see from the photos it looks like a larger version of the iPhone.
The Apple iPad features a built in accelerometer just like the iPhone so you can use it in portait and landscape mode, and it also features an on screen keyboard just like the iPhone that you can use to type emails and browse the web. The iPad’s OS is from the iPhone, and it features the iTunes store built in just like the iPhone, and you can watch YouTube videos in HD, and also TV shows and movies from iTunes.
It also features a built in maps application, which is probably Google Maps, so that means it has built in GPS. The battery life on the Apple iPad seems impressive at 10 hours.
There is also built in 802.11n WiFi and Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR. Apple have enhanced the iPhone SDK to support development of applications for the iPad.
One of the major new features of the Apple iPad is iBooks, or electronic books, and iBooks is an application for the iPad that will let you read books, so basically it turns it into an ebook reader as well.
As you can see from the photo above, the iBook application interface looks like a bookshelf, very cool!.
It will also come with a re-designed version of iWork, which will come with a range of features, and you can import images from the photo application and then resize them and move them around.
Whats interesting is that if you want to edit a document, the standard keyboard pops up, but if you want to enter a spreadsheet, then a data entry keyboard pops up.
As well as coming with built in WiFi, there will be models of the iPad available with built in 3G, and the good news is that the data plans seem reasonable, $15 a month for 250MB of data or $30 a month for unlimited data.
The bad news is that it looks like the iPad will be available with AT&T, although you will get free use of AT&T WiFi hotspots, also you are not tied into any contact with AT&T.
It looks like the iPad 3G models are also unlocked so you could use it with any data provider. It will also use the new GSM micro SIMs. There ar no details as yet on international deals for the iPad with 3G although Apple has said that they hope to have international deals in place by June.
The best news in the announcement of the iPad has to be the price, lots of reports came in the it would cost around $999, good news it is going to cost $499 for the 16GB version with Wifi, $599 for the 32Gb version with WiFi and $699 for the 64GB version with WiFi.
The 3G models are slightly more expensive, 16GB 3G is $629, 32GB 3G is $729 and the 64GB 3G is $829.
Image Credit: Gizmodo
Update 27th January 2010
You can see full specifications and official photos of the new Apple iPad at the link below.
Make sure you check out our Apple iPad Review, for full details on what we thought of Apple’s new tablet.