The third generation iPad is officially here, and fans all over the world braved the early morning today to wait in line and get their hands on the new tablet.

Line lengths varies around the world. More than 400 shoppers waited outside an Apple store in China, while more than 200 would-be owners stood in line outside an Apple store in Boston. Still others claimed to only have waited just 10 minutes, or not at all, for the clock to strike 8 am local time and the doors to open.

Even Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak waited in line to grab the new iPad. He didn’t have to, of course — the company habitually offers him any new device he wants. But as he explained to What’s Trending, he’s fond of the “real-world” experience that comes with owning a new device.

“More than anything else, it’s just sort of like it’s become a ritual, almost. Because I’ve done it so many times, I’m doing it again…I’d rather be in there and be genuine like the real people,” he said.

Clearly, both sleep and money were sacrificed in droves. But here’s the question: Is the third-generation iPad really worth the lines and the buzz?

Mashable‘s Christina Warren joined the crowds to survey the HD tablet herself. A “drool-worthy” display and an amazingly fast 4G LTE network are just some of the first impressions she noted for the new device.

The iPad’s sharp camera was another prominent feature. Comparing it side-by-side with the iPad 2, its superiority was undeniable.

So, what do you think of the new iPad? Was it worth the wait and the hype? Let us know in the comments.


BONUS: The View From the iPad Line [PICS]


The View From the iPad Line




Mashable reader Rafael Savino shows off the view from 2nd in line in Houston.

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1. Personal Killer Whale Submarine

 




 

Seabreacher Y not only looks like a 17-foot killer whale, it acts like one too. But this is one killer whale you’d like to be sitting inside. It’s powerful enough to hydroplane along the surface at 50mph and zip along underwater at 25mph.

Besides its killer looks, it even has a rear-facing camera ‘s video you can watch on an LCD screen. It’s not a deep-diving sub, though, going only 5 feet down, but the fun begins when you throttle up and leap the thing out of the water like a porpoise.

Save up your $100,000, and you too can turn into a virtual killer whale.

[via DVICE]

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In a week dominated by Apple’s iPad event, there were a surprising number of fascinating tech products introduced at the same time. We dug deep, looking for not only the coolest products and designs, but those that are unusual, useful, and futuristic as well.

We continued our experimentation with Windows 8, and found a plug-in that’s already been developed, perhaps easing the pain of the transition for those resistant to change.

We also got our hands on a spectacular (yet pricy) lens system for the iPhone, and found it to be an exceptional product.

SEE ALSO: Previous editions of Top 10 Tech This Week
As is our wont, we found astonishing conveyances for traveling both underwater and on land, and tossed in a surprise or two along the way. So here it is, the latest Top 10 Tech This Week.

Here’s last week’s Top 10 Tech.

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David Clarke is CEO and Co-Founder of BGT Partners, a 2011 and 2010 Ad Age Best Place to Work in the U.S. BGT creates interactive marketing and technology solutions for global corporations that strengthen brands, develop more engaging relationships and transform businesses.

It’s time to take tablet design seriously and evaluate how your brand’s web presence caters to tablet consumers. As usual, Apple is the primary driver behind tablet growth, and the new iPad is yet again redefining the tablet experience and pushing the boundaries of how we use the web.

But what does it mean for your web presence? Below are three ways for your brand to excel in the tablet revolution so you don’t get left behind.


1. Prepare Your Site to Go “Beyond HD”


Just as the demand for high-definition technology forced broadcasters to convert their shows, the new iPad may force brands to make their websites retina display-friendly. With the new iPad, your site is not going to look the same as it did before. The original and second-generation iPads both have a screen resolution of 1024 x 768, but the new iPad’s resolution of 2048 x 1536 is double that in both directions.

The retina display’s pixel density is so high that your eye is unable to distinguish individual pixels. And with a 44% better color saturation than before, coupled with A5X quad-core graphics, images on your site will pop off the screen and be crisper and sharper at any size. Existing apps will be updated automatically, and they will look better, but as Tim Cook stated during the unveiling, “If a developer takes a little bit of time, they can do little things that are mind-blowing.”

What does this mean for your brand?

To really take advantage of the retina display, brands need to put more emphasis on high-quality imagery, colors and overall attention to design details. Let’s face it — a poor design will make you look even worse in HD, while high-resolution imagery and a broader range of colors will ensure your site stands out.


2. Prepare for Voice- and Gesture-Controlled Interfaces


New iPad
Do you remember the movie Minority Report? It featured Tom Cruise swinging his hands and using his voice to control a computer screen. This was fiction 10 years ago, but voice- and gesture-controlled interactions are rapidly moving from fantasy to reality. Gesture-controlled video game systems like Nintendo’s Wii and the Xbox Kinect have been hugely successful, and LG recently came out with a voice- and gesture-controlled TV. That’s not to mention the splash that Siri made in the mobile world.

Although the new iPad doesn’t include Siri, it does include a voice dictation feature. However, voice- and gesture-enabled websites are bound to be a key part of the future web experience. In fact, Apple recently filed for a patent called the “Three-Dimensional Imaging and Display System,” hinting that the company is exploring gesture-controlled interactions.

What does this mean for your brand?

Well for now, Siri only works with a few of the iPhone’s built-in apps (email, search, calendar, etc.), but just imagine what will happen when Apple opens Siri up to third-party developers. Brands will be able to create Siri-friendly apps (for mobile and tablet) to allow customers to use their voices to carry out mundane tasks, such as paying your electric bill or transferring money from one account to another. To prepare yourself, focus on your key customers and their most important tasks and consider how your current apps can be improved through voice-controlled interactions.


3. The New iPad Is a Tipping Point for Tablets


New iPad Resolution
With the explosive growth of tablets and mobile, people are accessing the web on an increasing array of devices, and your consumers are now expecting your site to work equally well on their desktop, smartphone and tablet. But how do you accommodate for this when there are hundreds of different devices and screen resolutions? Creating separate sites for each device on the market can be expensive and difficult to manage, as the landscape is constantly changing.

What does this mean for your brand?

A smart approach to this challenge is implementing responsive web design, which utilizes one set of code to display content effectively across all devices. Gone are the days of creating entirely separate websites in parallel desktop and mobile versions. Now you can construct an extremely flexible website to handle multiple environments.

A responsive design responds to the user’s behavior and environment based on screen size, platform and orientation. As the user switches from a laptop to iPad, the website will automatically switch to accommodate for resolution, image size and scripting abilities. Essentially, your site will scale to whatever device your customer is using.


In Summary


Before you do anything, start with a thorough audit of how your current website performs on the new iPad. Look at imagery, colors, fonts and overall opportunities to improve the visual experience. Next, start the planning process to integrate voice and gesture-controlled interactions into your site — this is the future of tablets. Finally, convert your site design to one that’s responsive so it can be viewed optimally on every device in the market, starting with a tablet.

Follow these steps and your brand will not only be “beyond HD,” but will also excel in the tablet revolution.

 

The New iPad Details Hit Apple.com

The new 9.7-inch iPad has 2048 x 1536-pixel retina display, 5-megapixel camera (with the same optics sensor from the iPhone 4S) and 1080p video recording. It is available March 16 in black and white, powered by A5X chip (with quad-core graphics) and supports 4G LTE networks. It’s 9.4 millimeters thick and 1.4 pounds.

Wi-Fi only iPads cost $499 for 16 GB, $599 32 GB and $699 for 64 GB, while 4G versions cost $629 for 16 GB, $729 32 GB and $829 for 64 GB. Pre-orders start today, and the devices will be in stores March 16 in these 10 countries: U.S., UK, Japan, Canada, Switzerland, Germany, France, Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia.

Credit: Apple.com

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The New iPad Details Hit Apple.com

 




 

The new 9.7-inch iPad has 2048 x 1536-pixel retina display, 5-megapixel camera (with the same optics sensor from the iPhone 4S) and 1080p video recording. It is available March 16 in black and white, powered by A5X chip (with quad-core graphics) and supports 4G LTE networks. It’s 9.4 millimeters thick and 1.4 pounds.

Wi-Fi only iPads cost $499 for 16 GB, $599 32 GB and $699 for 64 GB, while 4G versions cost $629 for 16 GB, $729 32 GB and $829 for 64 GB. Pre-orders start today, and the devices will be in stores March 16 in these 10 countries: U.S., UK, Japan, Canada, Switzerland, Germany, France, Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia.

Credit: Apple.com

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Apple announced a new 4G LTE iPad featuring a 9.7-inch retina display Wednesday, following months of speculation about the company’s next big launch.

Its name? The new iPad.

The company made the reveal on stage at San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, home to Apple’s previous two iPad launches.

The new iPad — which starts at $499 — has retina display, a 5-megapixel camera (with the same optics sensor from the iPhone 4S) and 1080p video recording.

“[It has] text sharper than a newspaper. Photos will look incredible. Fonts look amazing,” said Phil Schiller, Apple’s SVP of worldwide marketing, during the event. “[It has] the best mobile display that has ever shipped.”

The new iPad will hit stores Friday, March 16, in the U.S., as well as in Japan, the UK, Canada, Switzerland, Germany, France, Hong Kong, Singapore and Australia. It will be available in both black and white.

Weighing in at 1.4 lbs and 9.4mm thick, the LTE device will work with AT&T and Verizon in the U.S., and Bell, Telus and Rogers in Canada. It will have 10 hours of battery life and 9 hours on 4G.

 

Photos on the New iPad

Images show up sharp and clear on the iPad’s new Retina Display.

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Pre-orders start today. Wi-Fi only iPads will cost $499 for 16 GB, $599 for 32 GB and $699 for 64 GB.

SEE ALSO: Live From the Apple iPad Event [LIVE BLOG]
4G models will cost $629 for 16 GB, $729 for 32 GB and $829 for 64 GB.

The iPad 2 will now cost $399 for Wi-Fi and $529 for Wi-Fi and 3G capabilities.

The iPad will also feature retina display with 2048 x 1536 pixels and 264 pixels in each inch. It will have a whopping 1 million more pixels than HDTV.

The new device will also boast 44% greater saturation and A5x quad-core graphics.


Camera


The tablet also comes with significant camera upgrades. An upgraded iSight camera has 5-megapixel resolution with backside illumination. In addition, the camera includes a 5-element lens and a hybrid IR filter. It also includes autofocus and white balance and an edge-to-edge, auto-focus lock. In essence, Apple has taken the optics of the iPhone 4S and put them in the iPad, albeit at a slightly lower megapixel rating.

The camera records video in 1080p, up from 720p on the iPad 2. It includes built in video stabilization, which as iPhone 4S users know, works surprisingly well.

Apple sent press invitations last week for today’s event, teasing “We have something you really have to see. And touch.” Although some believed the “see” alluded to a new retina display for the next-generation iPad others said it could be a reference to two product announcements — and that’s exactly what happened.

Apple also announced a new Apple TV, which features a streamlined interface and supports 1080p video. Movies and TV shows from iTunes are now available in 1080p.

Software updates are also available for iMovie, GarageBand and iWork — starting today. It also released a stunning new iPhoto for iPad app ($4.99) that will allow users to manage and edit pictures.

What do you think of the news? Is it what you were expecting? Let us know in the comments.

 

Apple iPad Event

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More Coverage of Apple’s New iPad


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Doctors can now save lives and office space with the latest cloud-based technology that will let them view live medical endoscope scans (medical images of internal organs) on their Apple iPads.

Current endoscopic images are generally viewed on bulky video monitors plugged into the wall. The new wireless endoscopy tools created by Envisioner called Endosync will mobilize doctors and maybe help them better diagnose illnesses in patients.

Here’s how it works: A wireless endoscopy transmitter hooks up to a traditional endoscopic camera that goes inside a person’s body. It transfers live video footage of internal organs through an encrypted Wi-Fi network to an iPad app called eGoPad. Doctors can view the footage live on their iPads and make audio notes.

SEE ALSO: 5 Useful iPad Apps for Doctors, Patients and Med Students

The technology is in its final stages of development and should be released in March.

What do you think of Endosync’s innovative medical technologies? Tells us in the comments below.

Image courtesy of Envisionier Medical Technologies, Inc.

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Rumors have been circulating for months about the next-generation iPad. Now they’re really ramping up. Wednesday saw the release of its supposed specs, and when it could arrive.

Boy Genius Report claimed a source had an iPad 3 prototype, and sent the tech site various development images that reveal more information about the device and its components.

Meanwhile, Amazon added two iPad 3 books to its European site — Ipad 3 pour les nuls, or iPad 3 for Dummies in French, and Auf die Schnelle iPad 3, which is German for iPad 3 on the Fly, according to a report from GameZone.com. iPad 3 for Dummies is scheduled to be published on March 29.

As for the specs, the images obtained by BGR show data points to model numbers J1 and J2, which refers to “iPad3,1″ and “iPad3,2.” This indicates that the iPad could be made available in two different versions — one for Wi-Fi and one perhaps with Wi-Fi and GSM/CDMA/LTE.

“From the data in the photos, which contain the output from an iPad 3 using a development and debug tool called iBoot, we can infer plenty of information about the upcoming iPad 3,” BGR said.

The images also show that Apple could be using a new processor called A6 (model number S5L8945X). This will likely be a powerful and extremely fast quad-core model.

iPad 3

It’s still unknown when the next-generation iPad could be unveiled. Speculations about a February or March announcement date have been making the rounds throughout the web for some time now. This is also in line with the company’s product launch cycle.

Although the images show that the device is being called the iPad 3, there was previously no indication that the latest tablet from Apple would even be called that. A recent report from iLounge noted that a prototype of the new version of the Apple tablet was at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show and that it looked almost identical to the iPad 2, so many speculated that Apple could be releasing an iPad HD with only a few updates from the iPad 2.

However, Bloomberg recently reported that the next-generation iPad will be faster – running on a quad-core chip – feature a high-definition screen and be compatible with long-term evolution (LTE), a wireless network that gives users access to data more quickly.

Are you excited for the next-generation iPad? What do you expect it to be like? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Image courtesy of BGR.


8 Rumors About the iPad 3: What It Could Look Like, When It Could Arrive


1. Minor Upgrades

iLounge recently reported that it saw a prototype of the next-generation iPad at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and that it looks just like the iPad 2, only thicker by about 1 mm. The camera in the top left corner is expected to be a bit larger than the iPad 2 and similar to the improved camera featured on the iPhone 4S.

It’s also been rumored that the next-generation iPad will have a high-resolution screen – possibly even double dpi — and a stronger interior. However, the updates seen by iLounge seem to be more cosmetic than structural. Could the next-generation device be an upgrade similar to that of the iPhone 4 to the iPhone 4S?

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The annual Macworld exposition begins on Thursday in San Francisco, and for the twenty-eighth consecutive year will bring together Apple fans, users and developers. But this installment adds a new twist — and a new name.

It’s now billed as Macworld | iWorld, which better captures “the essence of what a mobile lifestyle is,” according to event general manager Paul Kent.

As part of that emphasis, this year’s convention will include a festival of films exclusively shot on iPhones and how-to sessions about ways to better leverage Apple’s mobile-friendly technology. Macworld | iWorld will also feature the traditional assortment of lectures and product demonstrations. Artists and musicians will showcase work created using Apple products. The event runs Thursday through Saturday.

But Macworld | iWorld also faces a challenge: Three years after Apple’s final appearance at the event, can it remain relevant to fans and consumers?

Kent said the showcase is aware of the challenge but believes it still has great utility as a way for fans and consumers to talk to developers, get their hands on new apps, and pick up useful tips and hints in a unique way.

“We answer the question of, ‘What do I do now?’ after people have walked out of the Apple Store with their new Mac or iPhone or iPad,” he said in an interview.

“The tools are so powerful and accessible that you ramp up much differently that you do using Windows or Android,” Kent added.


Lost Its Luster?


One longtime Mac developer told Mashable that the event may have lost some of its luster since Apple pulled out, but that it still has significance within the Mac-loving community.

“I think it’s still relevant, but whether it’s as relevant is hard to judge,” said Christopher Allen, who has developed applications for Mac since 1984 and written books for iOS users.

Allen is attending this year’s event to do marketing for his new app, Infinite Canvas. He said that Macworld’s smaller scale since Apple left — the event reportedly drew 44,000 attendees in 2007 when Steve Jobs introduced the first iPhone, compared to 22,000 attendees last year — offers people like himself a set of costs and benefits.

“At its height, Macworld was starting to take on some of the challenges of CES, where it was getting so huge it was hard for a small company to get visibility,” he said. “But now that we’re a smaller Macworld, it might be a little easier to get the word out.”

But Allen added it has become harder to find Apple engineers and evangelists to network and market products with, formerly a major benefit of the show. And smaller attendance numbers also mean fewer sales.

“Before, small developers could basically show up and pay for their booth through sales but now I’m not quite as confident that’s possible,” he said. “Now it’s more of a pure marketing expense for a small developer, although they have made some good strides to improve that, like opening up on Saturday for more consumers to come through.”


Still Relevant


Kent and other organizers, meanwhile, remain bullish on the potential and relevance of Macworld — or, as it’s known now, Macworld | iWorld. Mashable got a preview of the event as it was being set up on Wednesday, and it looks to be an “insanely great,” to borrow the term, showcase for lovers of Apple products. Its larger relevance in the market, however, will remain to be seen.

“If people recognize this is not a trade show — it’s a lifestyle event — then it will work for them on so many levels,” Kent said. “If we’ve made the experience of using these products even more pleasurable through education, product discovery, performance and everything else here, then we will have really done our job.”

What do you think? Three years after Apple’s withdrawal, is Macworld | iWorld still relevant to you? Let us know in the comments

Also, click through the slideshow below to check out Mashable‘s behind-the-scenes look at what to expect this year at Macworld | iWorld.

1. Building Macworld | iWorld

The main exhibit hall was still being put together when we got to visit. Viewed here as you enter, it will feature a mobile hub to the right and software stations to the left.

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Thumbnail image courtesy of www.macworldiworld.com. All gallery images exclusive to Mashable unless otherwise noted.

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1. Thermaltake Level 10 M Mouse

This is what happens when Thermaltake rounds up those cool dudes at BMW DesignworksUSA to create a mouse that looks like it was plopped down from some kind of time machine. The mysterious pointing device comes with scant info so far, except this gorgeous pic and a promise of Spring availability.

The best news? This is just the first of a series of gaming peripherals from Thermaltake and BMW Designworks. Taking its design cues from the spectacular Thermaltake Level 10 PC case, all you need to add is a Level 10 keyboard (hopefully coming along after this mouse) to give yourself a complete PC system of the future.

[via Coolest Gadgets]

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The tech world continues to take giant steps forward with innovative devices, vehicles and gadgetry, and we’ve narrowed down the coolest of the bunch to the Top 10 Tech This Week.

This week, we found an unusually wide variety of tech toys, fitness helpers, relaxation aids, solar wizardry and even a hot rumor about a possible upcoming device from Apple — could there be an ultra-high-rez iPad 3 on the way?

SEE MORE: Previous editions of Top 10 Tech This Week

We’re not just lingering on terra firma with the top tech, either — now there’s talk of a permanent moon base that could be a joint venture between Russia, the European Space Agency and the United States.

Apart from that grandiose and ambitious scheme, we also found a spectacular new design for a gaming mouse by a design firm we visited in California, BMW Designworks, which is one of the most advanced hotbeds of design masters in the world.

So join us for one of the best collections of tech and gadgetry we’ve presented yet — don’t miss the top 10 tech this week, right here.

Did you miss last week’s Top 10 Tech? Find our special CES edition here.

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Apple iBook Author

Mashable OP-ED: This post reflects the opinions of the author and not necessarily those of Mashable as a publication.

Apple’s plan to bring iPad textbooks to schools across America and around the world via iBooks 2 and iBooks Author is nothing short of a revolution. It could mean the end of giant, overused dog-eared volumes jammed into bulging backpacks balanced atop the over-burdened backs of America’s youth.

It might also mean I’ll never have to explain to my daughter again where the rest of chapter 16 went.

A couple of months ago, my 13-year-old junior high-school-attending daughter was diligently plowing through piles of homework. Part of it involved reading a chapter in her Social Studies text book and then answering questions on a worksheet about what she read.

However, when I looked over at my daughter, she had her head of curls in her hands. “What’s the matter?” I asked her.

“I can’t finish my homework,” she said without looking at me.

“Why not?”

“Here.” She shoved her textbook at me.

I stared at it uncomprehending.

“What’s wrong with it?” I couldn’t see a problem besides the usual scribbling left by the previous loaner.

“The…pages…are…missing,” she said slowly as if speaking to a particularly dense child. Sure enough, pages 241 to 248 of her textbook had been torn out—and not so neatly. My daughter was frustrated and stuck. I’m sure you have similar tales.

Thursday I started imagining how that could never happen with an iPad text book. Apple’s iBook Author-built textbooks are, obviously, 100% digital. Good luck ripping a page out of that.


Tired Old Textbooks


There is another obvious benefit. My daughter sometimes struggles with the coursework in textbooks. It can be flat and boring. And if she’s confused, reading and rereading the textbook is not going to help her. I do believe that more interactive features could change things. There are definitely times where her failure to grasp something is from pure lack of interest. So how can we make these things interesting? Interactivity is at least part of the answer.

Apple did three important things to ensure the viability of this iPad textbook launch program: It built an excellent, powerful, quite easy-to-use app (almost epublishing for dummies). Desktop Publishing is not a new art; some of the construction metaphors in this app go all the way back to QuarkXPress. Still, it’s smoothly executed. The ability to almost instantly preview on your iPad is a stroke of genius.


Textbooks: The Price Is Wrong


Textbooks are expensive. When I was in college, I spent hundreds of dollars each semester on my own textbooks. I’m sure they’re no less expensive now. Similar tomes for K-12 schools must be nearly as expensive — what other excuse could they have for holding onto them for five years or more? In fact, McGraw-Hill’s Algebra 1 (one of the books converted for iBooks 2 textbook program) costs almost $100.

So a price of $14.99 or less for an iPad text book certainly sounds like a good deal, though I do wonder if Apple will offer volume discounts through its Textbook store. It would make sense — that’s how schools will buy these books, in bulk access codes. If schools believe they can save millions each year on textbook costs, they may run, not walk over to Apple’s iBook 2 text book platform.

The third thing is partnerships. Apple managed to sign up McGraw-Hill, Pearson and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt: three publishing houses that apparently comprise 90% of the textbook publishing biz in the U.S. These are the guys with the keys to the kingdom. They already publish the board-of-education-certified tomes. Now they’re working with Apple to convert them to interactive iPad textbook form.

The obvious concern is whether or not the iPad versions are still certified. Even so, this is a huge hurdle already surmounted before Apple’s iBook Author and iBooks2 with Textbooks is even fully out of the gate.


Questions


There are questions — big ones — that Apple and its partners will have to answer before this idea really takes flight.

What if the whole classroom doesn’t have iPads? Can one classroom work with both original hardcover and iPad versions of the textbook? Getting schools to update to the iPad and e-textbooks is not like flipping a switch. The iPad version will be more easily distributed and updateable, but boards of education cannot allow their editions to be out of step, can they?

When I asked someone in the education space, she noted that schools that purchased textbooks last year are not going to switch any time soon. In fact they might not be ready to switch for years. They made their investment and have to, as a fiscally responsible board of ed, use them until the books run out of utility (or until enough pages are ripped out).

Then there is the cost of the iPad. $499 is a good entry-level price for a computer. Multiplied by 30, times the number of classrooms in an average school (say, 40 at the low end) — that’s a half-million dollars. For school districts, that’s a big chunk of money.

I have a theory, though. I think Apple will introduce a Classroom iPad for $199 before the year is out. Pure speculation? Absolutely. However, considering how serious Apple is about improving the state of education, this makes real sense. I imagine it will be a 1024×768, 9.7-inch screen (while the iPad 3 gets the Retina Display and maybe changes size or shape), with a plastic back and rugged shell that only the school can remove.

There will be a single, rear-facing camera, and the tablet will be locked down with access to the iBooks 2 app and pre-loaded textbooks. Safari will come pre-loaded, but it’ll run through Apple’s special proxy education server (yes, I’m making that up, too).There will be no App Store or iTunes account associated with it and schools will manage all of them centrally.

If Apple does this, you will truly see the dawn of a new age in education. I, for one, am ready for it.

What’s your take? Are you ready to attend your next board of education meeting and tell the administrators it’s time for a new kind of textbook? Let me know in the comments.

Statistics on Education Performance

Apple’s Phil Schiller showed statistics on how well U.S. children are performing compared to kids in other countries; they ranked 17th in reading, 31st in math and 23rd in science.

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It’s no secret that students around the world are carrying too-heavy backpacks full of large, thick textbooks and handouts for school. What if, though, they could carry just one, thin slab, chock full of interactive text books and worksheets? That could be the story Apple weaves today in its Education Announcement event in New York City. You’ll only know for certain, though, if you follow this live bog.

Apple’s not saying a word about what’s to come, but the Cupertino, CA-based tech company may have sprung a few leaks, anyway. According to reports from the New York Times and Apple Insider, the company will unveil a new interactive ebook toolkit that could make creating iPad-ready schoolbooks and handouts as easy as crafting a song in GarageBand. Apple’s aspirations should come as no surprise. Founder and former CEO Steve Jobs, who passed away last year at the age of 56, made clear in interviews with his biographer Walter Isaacson, that education was very important to him and Apple. He had even targeted textbooks as the next business he wanted to solve.

SEE ALSO: Textbook Makers: We’re Not Afraid of Apple’s Education Announcement

Jobs and his Apple counterparts have built a pretty good track record for solving various tech and market conundrums. With Jobs gone it seems only natural that current Apple CEO Tim Cook would want to carry on his legacy. Can Apple solve education? Is the iPad the ultimate device for free, uncertified textbooks? Is your child’s backpack about to get a whole lot lighter? We’ll answer these and other questions during today’s live blog. Make sure you stick around for the whole thing, because there are bound to be some surprises.

The live blog begins right here at 9:30 a.m. ET.

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