Apple last week issued a report noting, among other things, that the company was responsible for 210,000 jobs related to iOS app development in the United States. Many of those employed as a result of Apple and iOS will be no more than 100 yards away when the company unveils the next vessel of their livelihoods.
That's where the certainty ends. Apple has not definitively stated that it will announce a new iPad. It has acknowledged only, "We have something you really have to see. And touch."
That sounds like new touch-based hardware with a really sharp screen. But it could be anything, really. It could be the long-rumored Apple television, a next-generation Newton, or a new line of fur-trimmed linoleum mouse pads.
Even the name of Apple's new device is undeclared. It could be iPad 3, or iPad HD, or some unforeseen variation on that theme. Pray Apple hasn't been bitten by the co-branding bug and partnered with Google and Yahoo to launch iPad+!.
But iPad fans know what they want: more features and improvements on existing features. Here are our top 10.
10. Faster Wireless
Networking doesn't have to be the weakest link. Apple could add support for 4G LTE wireless technology and the latest in Wi-Fi, 802.11ac. Whether the company will do so may depend on the processor and battery characteristics of the new iPad. Faster networking would be worthless if it came with faster battery drain.
9. Better Battery
As more and more people discover the joys of watching movies on iPads, more and more charging is necessary. And the power drain only gets worse if network data transfers are accompanied by other network services that utilize 3G, GPS, or other hardware. Can the iPad 3 have both more speed and more endurance? There's only so much power you can pack into a lithium battery before it becomes explosive.
Server Market SplitsvilleJust because the server market's in the doldrums doesn't mean innovation has ceased. Far from it -- server technology is enjoying the biggest renaissance since the dawn of x86 systems. But the primary driver is now service providers, not enterprises.