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iPad 3 Invites And The Art Of Minutia

Apple is highly selective about what it reveals in event invitations. What does its latest tell us about the iPad 3?

Eric Zeman

February 29, 2012

3 Min Read

Apple distributed invitations Tuesday to select media, asking them to attend a special event March 7 in San Francisco. The event is to take place at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts starting at 10 a.m. PT. As always, the invitation itself is being over-analyzed in hopes of discovering some clues about the iPad 3, before the device is actually announced. Let's dive in to the minutia and have some fun.

Apple selects every element of its invitations with an amazing amount of attention to detail. It knows that people are going to dissect the invitation, and controls every pixel. What, if anything, does the iPad 3 invitation tell us?

First, it is obvious that the display is of much higher quality. Putting the picture of the iPad on the invitation next to an image of an iPad 2 with the same apps visible clearly shows a device with a higher resolution display (see it at Gizmodo). There's more detail and definition visible, and the text is sharper. The iPad 3 has long been rumored to have a Retina Display, and most expect that it will have 2048 x 1536 pixels.

[ What's in your dream iPad 3? Here's iPad 3: 9 Things We Really Want. ]

Second, there's some text. The invitation reads: "We have something you really need to see. And touch." This is another clue that the iPad 3 will be all about the dazzling display.

But what about that second sentence about touching stuff? Gizmodo posits that the iPad 3 will do away with the physical Home button that's long been a part of Apple's iOS device lineup. Giz's theory is that the spacing of the apps shown in the invitation indicates the device is being held in portrait mode. When held in portrait mode, the Home button would be visible directly beneath the screen. There's no Home button visible in the invitation.

(Did I say minutia earlier? In case I didn't, I'll say it again for good measure: minutia.)

What else is there to pick apart, ah, yes, the apps shown in the invitation. As is fairly typical, the Calendar application is visible with a "7" inside it. The event was scheduled for March 7. This is standard stuff here, folks. Apple always does this. No clues hidden in plain sight. But what of the others?

To the left of the Calendar app, we can see the Maps app. It's the same icon for Maps that Apple has used since the first iPhone shipped. To the right of the Calendar app, we can see Apple's Keynote app. The presence of these two apps is somewhat puzzling.

Apple has hinted in the past that it wants to use its own mapping software and not rely on Google Maps. Is it ready to launch its own map app? Then there's Keynote. Obviously, Apple will announce the product at an event. When Apple's late CEO Steve Jobs made such product introductions, they were often referred to as "Steve-notes." Is this just Apple's way of paying tribute to Jobs, or is Apple going to do something new and different with the Keynote application itself? Who knows.

There's nothing else in the invitation to pick apart for clues, so we'll have to wait until March 7 to find out all the details.

The big changes expected are the Retina Display, LTE 4G broadband, quad-core processor, better cameras, and a larger form factor to fit a larger battery.

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About the Author(s)

Eric Zeman


Eric is a freelance writer for InformationWeek specializing in mobile technologies.

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