Jun 27, 2022
After only a few weeks of speculation, the iPad 2 is now here and ready for purchase. So many of you must already be holding one in your eager hands. But if you're still undecided, you may worry if the purchase would make your current collection of iPad, iPhone, or iPod accessories outdated.
Who wants to spend even more on additional add-ons after spending $500, $600, $700, or more on a new iPad? We've put the iPad 2 through its paces with various accessories as we do with every new model of Apple product. As of right now, this is what we've uncovered.
For those who already own a charger or battery pack that was particularly designed for the first iPad, the iPad 2 should also operate just fine with the new model. A more problematic situation arises if your present charger or battery isn't specifically designed for use with an iPad.
Power adapters designed for other devices—those that do not have the "Made for iPad" badge—will take longer to fully charge an iPad than its native 10-Watt USB charger, as we explained last year. iPad charging takes longer when using high-power iPhone charging accessories such as the official Apple iPhone Power Adapter or other AC and vehicle charger models built particularly for iPhones.
There are no built-in headphones on the iPad 2, so you'll need to buy your own. You can use headphones with a 1/8-inch (3.5mm) mini-plug to listen to audio. Apple-style inline remote controls for headphones may be used to control media playing on the iPad 2 way they are on other Apple products. It is possible to control playback and alter the iPad's volume level with a three-button remote.
A mono microphone may be used on any Apple-compatible inline microphone/remote module to capture voice in supported apps. In addition to Skype and other voice-related applications, it will work.
There appears to have been no change in the compatibility of older dock-connector microphones for iPods, such as the Blue Mikey, with the iPad 2. Nevertheless, Apogee has recently launched the Mike, a dock connection microphone compatible with the iPad.
As with previous iOS devices, the iPad 2 pairs effortlessly with Bluetooth stereo (A2DP) headphones. All audio, including that from the iPod and Video applications and games, is played through the headphones when linked.
But in my testing, I found that audio from the Skype app was not routed through the headphones, and Bluetooth headphones with a microphone did not function with Skype or audio-recording applications. iOS now includes support for AVRCP, the Bluetooth profile that permits full playback control over Bluetooth headphones and speakers, which is a big improvement over last year's original iPad.
It was possible to link the iPad 2 with several Bluetooth mono headsets. Still, no audio from the iPad 2 could be sent to the headset, and the headset's microphone could not be used with any applications that take microphone input.
Only mono Bluetooth headphones cut. A2DP (stereo Bluetooth) is supported by some single-ear Bluetooth headsets, such as those from Jabra, although they are mono devices. You may use these A2DP single-ear headphones with the first iPad to listen to music and other audio files.
A Bluetooth speaker system connects to an iPad 2 in the same way as a Bluetooth stereo (A2DP) headset does and sends all audio output to the speaker system. With iOS 4.1 and later, the speaker system controls may be used to control the iPad's media playback. Bluetooth receivers like Belkin's Bluetooth Music Receiver enable you to use your iPad's screen to watch videos or play games while the audio is playing via your speakers.
Since iOS 4.3 is installed, the iPad 2 can stream its entire audio library to any AirPlay-enabled speaker. For the time being, however, all audio will be delivered to the AirPlay system until you switch it back to your iPad using the AirPlay menu or another method. Second-generation Apple TVs can receive video via the Videos app and photographs and video from the Photos app.
Some of the most popular speaker docks for the iPad (speaker systems with 30-pin dock-connector cradles) are designed for iPods and iPhones. Therefore they don't work with the iPad. Sadly, this hasn't altered all that much despite the iPad's success. Few manufacturers, such as Philips, Altec Lansing, and iHome, have produced docking speakers large enough to accommodate the iPad in their product lineups.
In addition to this, there is the question of power. With the use of CableJive's Dock Extender Cable, we connected an iPad to an iPhone or iPod speaker dock, and all on-speaker controls worked as expected.