Hands-On With iPad 3 Rear Shell Reveals Thicker Body, New Camera, Same Look



Jeremy Horwitz, Editor-in-Chief over at iLounge, claims to have gotten up close and personal with a rear shell from Apple’s next-generation iPad 3. Thanks to his hands-on, Horwitz can reveal that the new device will indeed be slightly thicker than its predecessor (though you won’t notice it), with a much-improved iPhone-like camera, minus the LED flash.

In addition to the rear shell, Horwitz also witnessed the device’s front glass bezel, according to his report:

The new iPad’s body is so slightly thicker than the iPad 2 that the change is unnoticeable on first inspection; a roughly 1mm increase will barely be perceptible to users. We’ve heard that the only accessories that might have issues are cases, and then, only cases that were precisely contoured to fit the iPad 2’s back. On the rear, the camera in the upper left corner has become bigger—noticeably so when placed alongside the iPad 2, but not so huge that anyone would think they were different at a distance. The new camera hole is silver-ringed, and does in fact look the same size as the iPhone 4S’s much-improved rear camera system, minus the LED flash.

Furthermore, Horwitz reports that all of the device’s external features, such as its home button, headphone jack, and dock connector; will remain identical to those on the iPad 2. While some accessory manufacturers are claiming the device will boast a slightly smaller screen, the front bezel seen by Horwitz seems to dismiss that.

Horwitz does note, however, that the rear shell he saw seems to have been produced at least six months ago, which means it may not be the a final design for the iPad 3.

Just before last year’s CES event, Horwitz got a hands-on with an early iPad 2 rear shell, which was almost identical to that which featured on the device’s final design when it launched months later.

[via MacRumors]

  • Corey Watford

    Very nice

  • Will Reed

    Although there had been rumors about the iPad 3 being slightly thicker for a while I fear for what might be to come from Apple through the next decade.  Steve Jobs always insisted that the product would come out when ready and perfect and to me, even though it is only 1mm and unnoticeable by anyone who isn’t looking for it, this is the first step towards veering away from Steve’s perfection expectations and could possibly snowball throughout time.

  • prof_peabody

    Not really.  Apple products have on occasion been thicker than previous versions even when Steve was still alive.  

    Each product and each version of a product has to be better than before.  That doesn’t always mean it has to be thinner and very occasionally, it means thicker.  It’s the balance of all the features that you have to look at.  

  • poppa1138

    ipad3 1mm thicker,I can live with it,all I need to really know is when and how much…?

  • ddevito

    iPad 3 thicker? Ha Ha. Fail.

    Nah just kidding – but it sure would be strange for them to revert – battery life better be good.

  • TylerHoj

    Steve Jobs has over-seen the next five years worth of devices being cranked out of the Cupertino California company. No worries that this device won’t be ‘steve approved.’

  • Shameer Mulji

    1mm thicker for the pleasure of using a Retina Display & much better camera? I can live with that.

  • Gok

    Where is Retina Display ?

  • kenci59

    Faster processor, retina display, better battery, better camera. Similar to the move on iPhone. Improve but no radical changes. I can understand not wanting to completely change a winning solution, but I hope in the absence of Jobs the company doesn’t settle in and become an IBM

  • diggy106

    who’s to say the big wigs at apple have taken this “steve approved” device and added their own tweaks?

  • Jordan Clay

    Steve was more concerned with the user experience.  He realized that concessions could be made.  I feel that technologically, the user experience would suffer if they put in a 3 MegaPx camera instead of an industry “standard” 5-8.  Apple realized that they couldn’t do that size of sensor w/ that little room, a 1mm isn’t noticeable except w/ a pair of calipers

  • vonchambers

    All those big wigs are at Apple because Steve handpicked them to be there. They wouldn’t be there if he didn’t explicitly trust them at doing the right thing. He cleaned out all the dead weight years ago. I’m not worried. I can’t say in 15 years there won’t be rift raft but nobody knows what Google, Facebook, the internet in general will look like in 15 years so too early to make comments like that. 

  • kevinkee

    Thinner doesn’t always mean better. On the contrary thicker doesn’t mean heavier.

  • jfc123

    What products have been thicker?

  • Alex

    Quick lets start making thousands of cases based on this thing ….

  • Josh Dahlman

    White iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S