How the “new iPad” will change the way we read forever


The “new iPad” finally brings the retina display technology the worlds leading business tablet computer.  This will have a powerful effect on the way work is done, by revolutionising print.

The Retina Display

The “retina display” packs more pixels into a smaller area than anything before it.  The following image from the apple website shows how the resolution compares to a HDTV:


Keep in mind a HDTV is designed to be rather large (eg 42 inches), yet this is put in a relatively small tablet display.  (10 inches).  Some claim such high resolution is unnecessary.  What is this actually for?

Some media claim that the retina display is about photos, video and games.  Another view could be that the retina display is equally about type.:

Apple’s head of worldwide marketing, Philip Schiller, also pointed to the display’s clearer, sharper text — none of the blocky pixels that would show up when users wanted to take a closer look. (Washington Post)


The iPhone’s LCD screen includes Apple’s “in-plane switching” technology. This is the same technology used in the iPad and the Apple LED cinema display. It provides a wider viewing angle so that you can see the screen even if it is tilted away from you.  As any book reader will tell you, we rarely stay looking at the screen at a single angle.

The new iPad delivers an unprecedented level of high-quality type.  Take a look at the comparison from the Apple website:


The Revolution of Type

With the move to the retina display you are now able to view high quality type combined with fast graphics.  Combine this with the existing iBook announcements and you can see that this device change the world of text forever.

“Throughout the campus,” he remembered Steve Jobs at an address to students at Stanford in 2005, ‘”every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphied.” So, having dropped out and finding himself a free agent, he decided to take a class in this art. “I learned about serif and sans serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating.”. 

He went on to talk about his love of type and how he was able to express this in the Lisa and Macintosh computers of the era.  The “new iPad” continues his legacy by moving the consumption of excellent type to a new level.

The iPad adds to amazing type, moving beyond other eReaders by also offering high speed graphics, sound and video. 


Already some amazing “books” have been created combining multimedia and conventional type.   Imagine if the print quality was equal to a paper book. 


The iPad brings about new ways of experiencing books.   “Booktrack” for example is a way of authoring eBooks to allow readers to experience sound whilst reading type.  It is able to determine your reading pace using queues such as page-turns to ensure that the sound stays up to date.

Booktrack is a new technology which lets you experience books in a whole new way. By adding sound effects, musical score  and ambient audio, readers are immersed in the sounds of the story, adding a whole new layer to the reading experience. 

For organisations concerned with the quality of books on a tablet computer, the “new iPad” now offers a real alternative paper books and reports.   Everywhere that print is experienced today we will see even more of these devices.  I believe that the “new iPad” represents nothing less than a revolution in print.



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