The latest iPad Gadgets

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

iPad 4 doubles the power, but what developers will use it?

Alongside the much-touted iPad mini, Apple dropped a new iPad 4 on the world. A device no one needs, is ready for, and certainly no games developers will  be working toward. The power of the iPad 3 means games developers wanting to take advantage of that power (for intense graphics, deeper AI, better physics and so on) will be on quite long development cycles for those games.

Dropping the iPad 4 on them and going "hey, have twice as much power" will be welcome, if they were anywhere near maxing out the iPad 3 (of which there is little evidence). But that raw iPad 4 power will sit dormant for at least a generation of games, if not two, untapped and unloved.

The extra CPU and GPU horsepower from the A6X processor might be a call to arms to more mainstream developers (with 100 million iPads now sold, that's a tempting market) but without a proper controller there is still no sign of the iPad become a mainstream game device.

Apple may well reveal a controller alongside the Apple HDTV models next year, which makes more sense, but until then this looks like a big fat waste of processor cycles with no apparent benefit to anyone. As for the iPad mini (pictured), that rates between and iPad 2 and 3 on the power scale, so will be fine for casual gaming, but will disappoint anyone who think they can play the cutting edge titles, or enjoy retina-level gaming as it only has a 1024x768 resolution.

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