The new iPad retains it’s name ‘iPad’ and not iPad 3 or iPad HD as speculated. This new gadget will go on sale next week in the United States, Singapore, Hong Kong and several other countries.

The new iPad revealed on Wednesday has, as expected, a sharper screen at 2048×1536 higher than your full screen LCD TV and is power by a quad core A5X processor. What was more surprising was that the new features mean the tablet computer will be slightly thicker and heavier than the iPad 2, because it needs a larger battery to power the high-resolution screen.

The battery life remains the same: about 10 hours of use.

Prices aren’t changing from the previous models. They will start at US$499 (S$628). Versions capable of accessing cellular networks will cost US$629 to US$829.

The new iPad will go on sale March 16 in the US, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Puerto Rico, Singapore, Switzerland, United Kingdom and the US Virgin Islands. A week later, it will go on sale in 25 more countries.

Compared with the iPad 2, the new model features a higher-resolution camera on the back, similar to the one in the iPhone 4S.

The new iPad will be 9.4mm thick, or 0.37 inches. That compares with 8.8mm for the iPad 2. The weight is going up from 1.33 pounds (0.6kg) to 1.44 pounds (0.65kg) for the Wi-Fi-only model. The original iPad weighed 1.5 pounds (0.68kg).

Apple also confirmed that the new model will come in a version that can use Verizon Wireless’ and AT&T Inc’s ‘LTE’ wireless broadband networks. They offer speeds that are faster than the ‘3G’ networks used by previous iPads, and current iPhones.

Apple is updating some of the software on the tablet to take advantage of the new features. For example, it’s introducing a version of the Mac’s iPhoto photo organisation and manipulation program for the iPad.

Apple also said it would start letting users store movies in its iCloud remote storage service, so they can be accessed through the Internet by PCs and Apple devices. It already lets users store photos, music and documents in the service.

Apple is also upgrading its Apple TV set-top box so it can play movies in 1080p, the highest-resolution commonly used video standard.

On the sideline, Apple is upgrading its Apple TV set-top box so that it can play movies in ‘1080p’ format, the highest-resolution commonly used video standard. The small box, which comes with a remote, will still cost US$99 (S$125). The upgraded version will go on sale next week.

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