Originally Posted by Tallest Skil
Exactly, just like Apple gave the iPhone 3GS a complete internal redesign and the A4 chip and stopped selling the iPhone 4 oh, right.
Forgive me, but I don't think they'll 'refresh the iPad 2' instead of dropping the price of the iPad 3.
You're missing the point. Apple has made the iPad 2 available at $399 to cover a wider price range. The company's goal is not to keep lowering the price of the iPad. What I see happening is that Apple will offer two grades of iPad and by so doing appeal to a wider group.
I don't understand why it is that you think this a strange foreign concept for Apple. For example, all of it's portable laptops, including the Air line, are set up along these lines. The iMac and Mac Mini come in different flavours as well.
I don't see that Apple has anywhere to go once you are talking an ultra-high-resolution display and that pricey technology makes for a logical differentiator between the lower-cost range and the upscale range.
I just picked up an iPad 2 yesterday and so far I'm happy with it. It would be an even better device if it were lighter but the screen, while not incredible, is entirely serviceable. I see no reason why Apple would stop offering such a resolution on a tablet within the next year, which is what you seem to be implying.
Seems to me that what Apple has done is kept the $499 price point and used that for a state-of-the-art iPad and handled challenges from competitors looking to offer a cheaper option by making a $399 iPad available. I don't think Apple's goal is to be charging $399, within a year's time, for the iPad, even in it's most advanced form. This allows Apple to maintain a higher price point - very much what the company likes to do - while fending off the competition.
Bottom line is lots of people would be perfectly happy to be using an iPad that doesn't have a spectacular resolution yet we're not talking a poor product. The iPad 2 is a decent, usable device, as evidenced by tremendous sales. There are millions of iPads out there not sporting a Retina display and millions more that consumers like me will be buying in the year ahead. There is a place for such a device today and likely the next few years.
Yet Apple knows there is a market for a $499 tablet and has no intention of abandoning that price point. What I see happening next year is a refresh of the iPad 2 and a move to screen tech in the successor of the iPad 3 that will offer gains in weight and battery life. But I doubt Apple will just migrate the iPad 3 screen tech over to a $399 model because it would be much easier to achieve gains in weight and battery life in the lower-cost model by not trying to engineer in a Retina display all that quickly. There is no need. The screen tech on the current iPad 2 is viable. It was viable two months ago. It's viable today and it will remain viable next year. Millions have been using and will continue to use it without complaint. What's the problem with that?