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With Apple’s introduction of the fourth-generation iPad today, some recent purchasers of the third-generation model may be feeling somewhat disappointed that their new devices have been supplanted by an unexpectedly short upgrade cycle. CNET reports, however, that those who purchased their iPads within the past 30 days may be able to exchange their devices for new models at their local Apple Stores.
The manager at the Stockton Street store in San Francisco explained that “this specific store” would allow purchasers of the third-generation iPad to exchange their device for the fourth-generation iPad if purchased within the last 30 days. She emphasized that, unless the recently-purchased iPad showed serious signs of wear-and-tear, the usual 14-day return policy would be waived.
“And what about other stores?” You’ll have to call and find out. She explained, “We can’t speak to other stores’ policies — this is something our store has decided to do.”
The report suggests that the extended return window is not an official company policy and thus customers may find spotty adherence to it, but stores generally have some flexibility in allowing returns considering certain circumstances, and with any luck some recent iPad customers may find themselves able to upgrade to the latest model without penalty.
With all the hullaballoo surrounding the new iPad Mini, it’s worth remembering that some actual Windows-flavored competition is ready to roll. We learned last week that Microsoft spent quite some time in a self-described Willy Wonka type studio, carefully crafting the clicky, compact Windows 8 tablet. And one of its most special, and most important, features is the Touch Cover, which doubles as a tablet cover and a keyboard all in one 3mm package.
Microsoft today released a video that goes into more detail about the Touch Cover’s creation. As you may remember from the original tour through Studio B, a lot of attention went into the noises of the tablet, namely the soft clicking sound when the touch cover attaches.
Microsoft also showed off the Type Cover, which is essentially a 6mm cover with a scissor key keyboard. It has all the same “smart” functionality as the Touch Cover, but with a bit more familiarity when typing.
However, an engineer in the video explains that, with the Touch Cover, “there isn’t a huge learning curve with respect to muscle memory of where your fingers are striking the keys.” We’ll have to wait until full reviews are released to find out.
Microsoft Surface RT is already available for pre-order and becomes available on October 26.
Apple has been slow to support the myriad of LTE networks used by cell carriers around the globe. The company only supported Verizon and AT&T in the U.S., and several Canadian carriers when the LTE iPad launched earlier this year, leading to complaints over Apple’s marketing of the device in a number of countries.
Today, during the announcement of the fourth-generation iPad, Apple briefly displayed the above slide showcasing a number of domestic and international carriers that should eventually support LTE data on the new iPad and the iPad mini, and potentially the iPhone 5 as well.
Currently, the iPhone 5 supports LTE networks on 17 carriers in 9 countries. For U.S. consumers, the new iPad and the mini will now support Sprint’s LTE network. Additionally, Apple has posted a new page showing the 19 carriers in 9 countries that the iPad mini and 4th-gen iPad will support at launch.