If you were hoping that the blitz of iPad news would end with the device’s long-awaited announcement yesterday, well, sorry. Even with Cupertino’s latest tablet waiting in the wings for a March 16 release, we’re all still speculating when it comes to some of the device’s particulars, and now the new iPad’s allotment of RAM is getting its share of the spotlight.
According to The Verge, the new iPad will indeed feature double the RAM of its immediate predecessor, with a full gigabyte of memory ensconced within its aluminum frame. But why doesn’t Apple ever talk about it?
That Apple would make the jump to 1GB for their newest post-PC poster child shouldn’t come as a surprise. The original model launched with 256MB of RAM onboard, which made for some iffy use experiences after a few software updates. The iPad 2 debuted with 512MB under the hood, a substantial improvement to be sure, but it’s only a matter of time between new features and apps have iPad 2 users feeling the same sort of squeeze.
Now I can’t speak for everyone, but my childhood in computing was spent scrounging together allowances for new RAM so my off-brand PC wouldn’t chug quite so hard. As The Verge rightly points out, Apple’s iPad line to date has never blown the tech community away with the amount of RAM they’ve included. Apple’s silence on that front is to be expected — while they’re always eager to talk up their processors and their cameras, Apple has historically been content to leave the some of the technical specifics shrouded in mystery.
And why shouldn’t they? By throwing around adjectives like “magical,” “incredible,” and “amazing” at every possible opportunity, consumers are left to focus more on what they can do with an iPad rather than the little bits of silicon that make those experience happen. Sex sells, and RAM is anything but sexy.
Still, the fact of the matter is that RAM matters, even if Apple would prefer you didn’t know about it. As apps get more complex and more impressive (as they should, considering how picky we are about them), the demands they exact on a device’s hardware grow ever greater. More robust system resources means more opportunities for developers to flex their respective muscles, and the last thing Apple needs to do is displease the people who generate revenue for them. More RAM is a win for nearly everyone involved, and while some of us may never see as much as we like in our iDevices, that shouldn’t stop Apple from at least talking about it.