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New iPad shown off in hands-on photos

We go hands-on with the new iPad, to see what that new retina display has to offer. Will a sharper screen and better processor tempt you?

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Andrew Hoyle
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Tim Cook has just finished showing off the latest slate in Apple's lineup and we've already got our excited greasy mitts all over it and cast a beady eye over the new display.

Apple has given the iPad a few tweaks for this new refresh, the most important being in the display. Rumours have been flying around for almost as long as I can remember that the new version will have a retina display and thankfully, said rumours were bang on the money.

We're looking at a 2,048x1,536-pixel resolution here -- that's four times the resolution of the iPad 2. So far, the best resolution we've seen on a tablet is the Asus Transformer Pad Infinity, which strutted about MWC with its 1,080p display.

The new iPad blows that clean out of the water without so much as a "How do you do?" At first glance in our hands-on though, we weren't immediately taken aback. It's sharp, sure, but it didn't have the "OMG" factor we were hoping for. Perhaps we'll feel differently when we see it in our labs next to the older generations.

It's also running on Apple's latest A5X chip. That's not the A6 chip we had heard about, but Apple promises it has "more memory and processing than an Xbox 360". There's no word on whether this is a dual- or quad-core affair -- Apple only says it has "quad-core" graphics -- but it's sure to be a step up from the iPad 2's processor. It seems exactly as swift as we'd expect an iPad to be, but we'll be sure to see exactly what it can do in our full review.

It retains the iPad 2's aesthetics, but it's ever so slightly thicker and heavier than the previous model, which we'd guess is due to a different battery design as well as a larger camera unit to house the improved 5-megapixel snapper.

It's not a huge upgrade, but there are enough changes to keep us gadget fans satisfied for at least a few weeks -- until the Samsung Galaxy S3 arrives, anyway. Click through our hands-on photos above, check out the preview, and let us know what you think in the comments below and over on our Facebook wall.

If you're feeling particularly brave, you can even start speculating what we'll be getting in the iPad 4.

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Here's the back. Nothing hugely special here.
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You can't really tell, but it's ever so slightly thicker.
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You can still use it with that weird folding stand thing.
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Here are some photos, neatly arranged into albums.
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Look at these happy chaps! They're smiling, maybe you will too if you use the new iPad.
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Here we see some more of iPhoto. Hopefully, it will offer a speedy workflow. If you're a designer, this might be awesome.
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More of somebody's holiday snaps. Where are all the drunken ones at the bar?
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Don't you just miss the days when you would lie down under cherry blossom and laugh?
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You can't tell, but that screen is four times the resolution of the iPad 2's.
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It's the Thames, but in much higher definition. Can anyone else hear the EastEnders theme?
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You can still browse iTunes for all the music you want, but with the added bonus of a crisper screen. Futuristic!

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