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Apple failed to move hardware bar with iPad 2, say experts

Gregg Keizer | March 2, 2011
By the time that Apple CEO Steve Jobs wrapped up today's launch of a revamped iPad, analysts were already calling it "incremental" and pointing out that it the new tablet delivers "no surprises."

Or maybe the talk of hardware is all just noise.

"Let's be honest," said Baker. "What Apple's move today points to is the fact that hardware is not all that important. The biggest differentiator between Apple and [other tablet makers] is iOS versus the others, its App Store versus everyone else. If Apple can continue to build the better experience, its success isn't hardware dependent."

While there may have been a lack of drama about the iPad 2 -- the name bloggers had stuck on the expected upgrade months ago, and that Apple co-opted -- it was balanced by Jobs' presence at the San Francisco event. It was his first public appearance since he announced last January that he was taking an indefinite medical leave, and made up for a missing "One more thing" announcement that has made Apple's product launches famous.

"Steve Jobs doing the presentation, that was important," said Gottheil. Jobs received a standing ovation from the crowd of reporters and others at the invitation-only event.

Apple's iPad 2
Apple CEO Steve Jobs today unveiled the new iPad 2. (Image: Beck Diefenbach / Reuters).
See liveblog coverage for more images from the iPad 2 launch.


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