Apple finally gave us the date the first iPads will hit store shelves: April 3. We've been closely following the touch-screen tablet since Apple first announced it in late January, but here's a quick guide for your most essential questions about the device.
First things first: How big is it? The iPad's screen offers a maximum resolution of 1,024x768 pixels and measures 9.7 inches diagonally, 5.75 inches wide, and 7.75 inches tall. An 0.86-inch bezel frames the screen (with a hair extra room on the bottom to account for the home button), making the front of the iPad a total of 7.47 inches wide and 9.56 inches tall. The total thickness of the iPad is half an inch at its thickest point, which tapers down to a quarter of an inch near the edges. Total weight is 1.5 pounds for the model with Wi-Fi only, or 1.6 pounds for the version with 3G.
What hardware features does the iPad offer? Many of the iPad's hardware capabilities are identical to the Apple iPod Touch, including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1, a stereo audio output (headphone jack), built-in speaker, an integrated lithium ion rechargeable battery, and NAND flash memory. A built-in accelerometer and ambient light sensor are also included on the iPad.
Hardware features that distinguish the iPad from the iPod Touch include a 1GHz A4 processor, an oleophobic screen coating, integrated digital compass, built-in microphone, mute switch, and support for 802.11n Wi-Fi (in addition to 802.11b/g). The 3G version of the iPad includes a SIM card tray, as well as assisted GPS capabilities.