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Apple unveils new iPad Air

Graeme Parton

Apple has taken the next step in its attempts to dominate the tablet market, adding the iPad Air to its popular product range.

The new device, which at 7.5mm is 20 per cent  thinner than its predecessor, is thought to be one of the lightest, full-sized tablets available.

Powered by the same A7 processor chip found in the company’s flagship mobile device, the iPhone 5S, the 1lb tablet is expected to be a hit with tech fans.

The release comes after some experts suggested that tablets running Google’s Android platform could soon leapfrog Apple’s offerings in the popularity table.

Apple also chose the announcement event in San Francisco to release details of a new iPad Mini – a smaller and slightly cheaper version of the company’s main tablet.

The gap between the Mini and the larger model has been closed slightly, with the new 7.9in screen now offering a 2048 by 1536 pixel display to match.

Google and Amazon are also big players in the small tablet market, with the Nexus 7 and the Kindle Fire HDX offering equally impressive HD displays.

One tech consultant, Tony Cripps from Ovum, suggested that the screen upgrade on the iPad Mini has only brought it in line with the expectation expressed by consumers around the last model’s release.

Cripps also explained that while Apple’s market share was likely slip with so many new manufacturers offering their own products, this only shows that the field is growing quickly, which is ultimately a good thing for all involved.

A new version of Apple’s Mac operating system, Mavericks, was also unveiled, with a company spokesperson saying the release would be available at no extra cost to those who are already using computers with OS X versions released since 2009. This marks the first time that Apple hasn’t charged users for one of its major Mac OS upgrades.

Graeme has experience creating content for online sources and for the radio, and at university he studied Multimedia Journalism.

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