Before Apple’s big announcement on Monday, we told you about iOS 6 build leaks that did not include the original iPad or any iPod touch older than the current generation.
Once all the fancy features of the upcoming operating system were announced at WWDC, it was made clear that Apple only looks forward, leaving its eldest iPad behind.
With everything that is coming this fall in iOS 6, it may be time to upgrade.
The original iPad is less than three years old. It was released in 2010. The thousands of early adopters, myself included, thought it was the most advanced piece of technology to come out in the 21st century. Then, the iPad 2 was release and proved us wrong. When the third-generation iPad hit store shelves, it blew all others out of the water. But there are still techies out there that are holding onto the first iPad because, up until two days ago, it was a viable device. Not anymore.
Second and third-generation iPad owners will get an upgrade that will include the virtual personal assistant Siri, who will be able to tell you sports scores, find you a restaurant and recommend a movie. The upgrade will include Facebook integration, photo stream sharing, a proprietary 3D mapping service and a handful of new, native apps that are sure to impress. First-generation iPad owners will get nothing.
Not only will original iPad owners be left out of the iOS 6 craze, but it is also likely that app developers will start to update their applications for the new operating system, making it incompatible with any device not up to speed. You’ve seen those disclaimers in the App Store: “ Not compatible with ‘X’ generation device,” or “Only works on iOS ‘blah, blah, blah’ and later.” That’s going to include the first-generation iPad come this fall.
Currently, Apple is still selling refurbished versions of the original iPad on its online retail store in the “Special Deals” section, but only a select few. You can buy a refurbished iPad with Wi-Fi + 3G 16GB for only $379. With the exception of the 64GB with Wi-Fi model, the only first-generation iPads that Apple is selling are Wi-Fi + 3G models. My prediction is that won’t be for long, either.
I think that Apple will continue to sell refurbished original iPads until iOS 6 is ready for the public. This fall, while we’re all cursing our devices because we can’t figure out how to download the new operating system and we accidentally deleted all of our contacts, Apple will quietly put the old dog down. There is no reason the tech giant would want to keep selling a device with an obsolete operating system. That is just a lawsuit waiting to happen.
If you weren’t ready to upgrade before, now is the time. Or, at least this fall is the time. Your first-generation iPad is soon to be about as useful as a serving tray. You may as well give it to little Bobby Jr. to play with. You don’t have to go full-steam ahead. You can still get the iPad 2 and have most of the same, great features that the third-generation iPad has for $100 less (although, it looks like Apple only has the 16GB size in stock on the online retail store). However, I recommend the new iPad. The Retina display graphics are fantastic and the device is much more powerful. Plus, you’ll have at least an extra year before that one becomes obsolete, too.