With a little over 24 hours to go, you may find yourself debating which iPad 2 model you will actually buy. Don’t worry, about a year ago I was in that same position when I first purchased the iPad and after having used it for almost a year, I have a couple of buying tips that may help make your decision simpler.
Black or White iPad?
White has been a color on iOS devices that a lot of users have longed for. iPhone 4 users that wanted the white iPhone were disappointed when Apple didn’t deliver on their promise, however, now that there is a second option for the iPad I expect that a lot of users will be getting the white iPad over the black, not only to differentiate themselves from others, but because it does look real sleek. At the end of day, it all boils down to preference. I will be jumping on the white iPad.
Unfortunately Steve Jobs doesn’t like the use of memory cards to expand storage memory on their devices, so you’ll have to choose between 16GB, 32GB, or 64GB models.
As you see in the table above you’ll have to spend $100 for each size that you move up, halving the price per gigabyte at each interval. If I were buying an iPad again I wouldn’t get anything less than the 32GB option, 16GB just doesn’t cut it anymore. Hopefully Apple will phase out the 16GB model in future iterations, but in the mean time I wouldn’t settle for anything less than 32GB. Here’s why:
If you’ll notice, my 16GB iPad is about full and it is carrying about 1,000 of my favorite photos, a couple of videos shot on the iPhone, about 15 eBooks, three HD movies, four TV episodes, and tons of apps. If I had double the capacity I wouldn’t have to be so strict on my movie selection and I could probably add a couple of photos.
Wi-Fi or Wi-Fi + 3G
This really depends on one thing. Do you plan to use your iPad outside of your home’s Wi-Fi network? If so pony up the extra $129 and get the Wi-Fi + 3G model, you will not regret it…I know this is one of the things I regret not getting when I purchased the original iPad and I wont be making that mistake again.
Having 3G on your iPad will enable you to use apps and features that may only be available while you’re online anywhere. For instance if you have an iPad bracket mount for your iPad and wish to use it as your GPS device instead of your Garmin, this would be a great option.
Which Carrier? (3G models only)
As you will see in the table below, AT&T provides the best price per month, but a very limited set of options. On the other hand Verizon’s service provides users with double the number of plans AT&T does. So which is better? It depends on where you live and what your criteria for better is.
Here in Miami, AT&T service, specifically 3G is fast and available everywhere. In places like New York and San Francisco, I can’t say the same, I recently went to New York and was lucky if I could check-in with Foursquare at one of 10 places I visited. I can’t speak for Verizon’s service as I have not had experience with it, but according to surveys it’s pretty darn good.
As you can see, AT&T offers the cheapest plan at $15, but only for 250MB, if you spend an additional five bucks on Verizon’s network you get a whole gig. It really boils down to the number of options you have and the minimum amount that you want to spend on another data plan.
Don’t get the smart cover! As cool as it is and as tempted as you may be to get the new smart cover from Apple, I ask you to reconsider. As an iPad user I can tell you with certainty that without the iPad case from Apple (and Zagg’s InvisibleShield protectors) my iPad would be full of scratches from falls, sliding on the desk, and the hands of my beautiful 13-month daughter.
The best case is the one that covers the entire body of the iPad, just ask any MacBook owner that has gone without a cover on their Macs aluminum body. I’d wait for a wrap-around cover from Apple or another cover from Zagg, Incase or others.
What iPad Will I Buy on Friday?
Having used a 16GB Wi-Fi iPad for almost a year, I find that additional space and the ability to connect from any location is worth the money, so I will end up buying the White 32GB Wi-Fi + 3G model for Verizon’s network. What will you get?