Apple’s just announced a refresh of the Apple TV, along with the “new” iPad. Not the iPad 3, or iPad HD; just the “new” iPad. What does the Australian picture look like for its latest tablet?
You can follow the entire timeline of Apple’s event at our liveblog, and we’ve got plenty of other coverage of the new products:
– New iPad HD: The Third Generation
– Inside Apple’s A5x Chipset: Dual-Core CPU, Quad-Core GPU
– The Next Apple TV: Big, Beautiful, 1080p HD
– The New iPad’s Beautiful New Retina Display
– How The App Store’s Gunning For Your Dollars
But what about in Australia? What do we get?
The good news
The iPad 2 isn’t quite dead — yet. Apple’s elected to retain the iPad 2 as its budget line model, in much the same way that you can get an iPhone 4 quite cheaply. If you want more storage you’ll have to upgrade to the new “resolutionary” iPad, but the base model 16GB iPad 2 will sell for $429 (Wi-Fi only) or $569 (Wi-Fi + 3G).
But that’s not what you’re keen on, right? The new iPad pricing starts at $539 for the Wi-Fi 16GB model; 32GB is $649 and 64GB is $759. 3G (and technically 4G) is a $140 premium, so the 16GB models run to $679, $789 and $899 respectively. That’s actually a slight price drop over the equivalent iPad 2 models you could have bought yesterday. You’ll be able to pre-order them, but at the time of writing the pre-order link goes to the local online Apple store — which is still down. We’ll update when they do, in other words.
Update: The Australian Apple store is back up, with a link that promises you can pre-order (limit of two per customer) “For delivery between March 16 and March 22.” and confirming retail store availability on March 16th. So expect queues, in other words, unless you want to pre-order and potentially wait.
Apple’s local web site lists the pricing for the new 1080P compatible Apple TV at $109, but again the store is down, so you can’t exactly rush order one right this second.
Update: Yep, that’s up now too, with a listing that says it “ships March 16-19”.
The bad news
It’s 4G, and that’s great, right? Yes and no. Sure, it’s nice to have the capability, but right now if you had a new iPad, you’d get no 4G in Australia whatsoever. Apple’s specifications page for the new iPad list its LTE frequencies as 700Mhz and 2100MHz. The only 4G LTE network in Australia that consumers can hook into is Telstra’s 1800Mhz one, which won’t (based on those technical specifications) be compatible. It’s theoretically feasible that Apple might develop another 4G iPad — but I wouldn’t hold out too much hope. It is dual channel HSPA+ capable, however, with a theoretical 3G upside of 42Mbps, so it’s possible that Australians on 3rd Generation iPads may actually get better speeds than Americans on 4G.