- A better screen, 2048-by-1536 resolution, 4x the pixels
- More power (if only to drive the display)
- A better camera, 5MP
- 4G mobile speed (for the models with mobile connection beyond wifi)
It's 50 grams heavier, which should be around "just noticeable". It's the same size, except for just 0.6mm thicker, so the iPad 2 cases should fit.
It's about the perfect form and size for the purposes, but I wish one day they'll make one at half the weight, because you really need support for this thing when using it for more than a few minutes.
(I think I'll wait this time for the UK version to come out, hoping that the time difference will be rather less than the over two months it was with the first model.) [Update: well, times they are a-changing, it seems that in the UK it will come out about the same time as in the US! In a week or two, nice.]
Apple is also strongly stressing the powers of content-creation of this iPad, hitting the "post-PC" button many times. I am not sure how fast and for how many tasks we can get used to going without keyboard and mouse, time will tell.
The 4G networks are just starting to appear around the world, but the connection speeds should be quite a leap up, if one chooses to connect via iPad directly. I prefer to save a contract by connecting via my iPhone in the instances I need to connect outside of a wifi hotspot. The iPhone 4S is not 4G-enabled, sadly, but one supposes that the next one in the fall will be. (Whether that will be an "iPhone 5" or simply "iPhone" is a matter of tense anticipation.)
The dictation sounds wonderful, given the clumsiness of typing on a screen, but I'm not so optimistic about how well it will work for people like me, who are not native English speakers, previous systems have been less than great for many of us. It's very frustrating, you think you have said a perfectly clear English sentence, and still 95% of the time a couple of words are messed up.
Apple again decided not to stream the keynote speech live (I wonder if they have given up that), but amazingly they posted the video less than half an hour after the end. That's some fast editing there!
Sadly, despite all the HD video capabilities (creating or consuming), 64GB is still the largest memory size. I think that's a bit lame. I think the three sizes should all have been bumped up to double. Memory is dirt cheap these days.
Update: Here's a mainstream media commentary, some of it is interesting, thanks to TCGirl.
The new iPad "looks the same as the old one [but] you're getting a considerably improved screen, improved camera and processor," he says. "I don't think they passed the 'wow' factor but I don't think they have to. They improved the iPad considerably over what it used to be and I think that's your 'wow' factor. If you're not happy with that, you might be a little jaded."