IT Pro is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

Head-to-Head: Apple iPad 2 vs Apple iPad original

The iPad 2 will finally hit British shores on Friday March 25th at 5pm, but should you upgrade if you already have a first-generation model? Read our head-to-head comparison to find out.

Unlike the camera-less original iPad, the new model as two cameras. The low quality cameras aren't very good at taking stills, but they could be useful for video conferencing. Apple includes its own FaceTime app for calling other iPads, iPhones, iPod Touches and Macs, but unless other companies adopt Apple's FaceTime technology, you'll be looking at other apps.

Unfortunately third-party iPad video conferencing apps are currently few and far between. Even the available iPhone online meeting apps, such as Webex which do run on the iPad, have yet to support video calling, while Skype has only just included it. Unless your company has completely switched over to Apple devices and FaceTime, video calling currently isn't a good reason for abandoning your original model iPads.

The cameras can also be used to record video. Holding the iPad 2 up for use as a camcorder feels very awkward, but it might be useful in a pinch and it's even possible to edit video using Apple's optional iMovie app. It's not as flexible as the Mac version of iMovie, or other desktop video editing programs, but its slick interface makes it ideal for quickly cutting and uploading short clips. That brings us to

Processor, RAM and software

The original iPad has a single-core 1GHz A4 processor and 256MB of RAM. The latest model has a dual-core 1GHz A5 processor and 512MB of RAM. The practical effect of these bumped specifications is that apps launch faster and run more smoothly. The more complicated the app, the bigger the difference.

Apple's own iMovie video-editing app only runs on the iPad 2 which we suspect is due to the new model's superior processor and increased memory. We expect more and more apps will take advantage of this more powerful hardware for a smoother experience, eventually dropping support for the older model although this will take a while.

As speedy as the iPad 2 is, unless your company is already using particularly demanding apps, its more powerful specifications aren't a compelling reason to dump your classic iPads just yet.

Featured Resources

The state of Salesforce: Future of business

Three articles that look forward into the changing state of Salesforce and the future of business

Free Download

The mighty struggle to migrate SAP to the cloud may be over

A simplified and unified approach to delivering Enterprise Transformation in the cloud

Free Download

The business value of the transformative mainframe

Modernising on the mainframe

Free Download

The Total Economic Impact™ Of IBM FlashSystem

Cost savings and business benefits enabled by FlashSystem

Free Download

Recommended

Apple iPad Air (2020) review: The executive’s choice
tablets

Apple iPad Air (2020) review: The executive’s choice

7 Mar 2022
Apple iPad Pro 12.9in (2021) review: A giant leap for Apple silicon
tablets

Apple iPad Pro 12.9in (2021) review: A giant leap for Apple silicon

5 Nov 2021
In praise of the early adopters
Hardware

In praise of the early adopters

2 Nov 2021
Apple iPad (2021) review: The best entry-level iPad
tablets

Apple iPad (2021) review: The best entry-level iPad

12 Oct 2021

Most Popular

How to boot Windows 11 in Safe Mode
Microsoft Windows

How to boot Windows 11 in Safe Mode

29 Jul 2022
Samsung proposes 11 Texas semiconductor plants worth $191 billion
Hardware

Samsung proposes 11 Texas semiconductor plants worth $191 billion

21 Jul 2022
Should you take your password manager off the internet?
Sponsored

Should you take your password manager off the internet?

28 Jul 2022