The iPad 3 launched this morning to queues at stores around the world (unless you went to Walmart at midnight last night). It's a tradition for the most die-hard of Apple fans to camp out for the latest products. Now that the crowds are dispersing, it's time for another tradition -- tearing that sucker apart.
Old favorite iFixit stepped up to the plate yesterday having procured one of the new iPads from a midnight opening in Melbourne, Australia. It's now been officially confirmed that the iPad 3 has twice the RAM of the iPad 2. Aside from 1 GB of DRAM (comprised of two 4Gb Elpida LP DDR2 parts), iFixit found that much talked about dual-core Apple A5X processor with integrated quad-core graphics, a 9.7-inch Samsung-manufactured Retina Display, a Broadcom BCM4330 802.11a/b/g/n Baseband/Radio with Integrated Bluetooth 4.0+HS, a Qualcomm MDM9600 3G and 4G wireless modem (not the expected 2nd generation MDM9615), and a Qualcomm RTR8600 multi-band/mode RF transceiver for LTE bands. The iPad also boasts 16, 32 or 64 GB of Toshiba NAND flash memory and a 5 MP HD rear-facing camera.
The biggest thing you'll see when taking apart the iPad is the battery, which is massive. This was expected, considering Apple has beefed up the graphics and added that stunning Retina Display. The battery in the iPad 2 was a 25 watt-hour Li-ion, while the iPad 3 boasts a 42.5 watt-hours battery. iFixit reports that takes most of the space inside the iPad. No kidding, look at that thing.
As far as DIY repairs are concerned, the iPad 3 scores a depressing 2 out of 10 on the repairability scale/ No surprise there, really, as Apple has gained some notoriety for making its products inaccessible when it comes to home repairs. What is surprising is that iFixit is actually downgrading the iPad 2's score from last year, too.
"While the new iPad's design is essentially the same as the iPad 2, which we gave a repairability score of 4, we've learned a lot about the design since then. We've spent the last year trying to repair the iPad 2 with mixed success," writes Kyle Wiens, CEO of iFixit. "We are awarding the new iPad an abysmal 2 out of 10, and retroactively dropping the repairability score of the iPad 2 to a 2 as well. The adhesive on the front is extremely difficult to remove without damaging the glass, making repair and end-of-life recycling very difficult."
So, don't try this at home unless you have supreme confidence in your tinkering skills.