Apple says it will begin production on a new iPad that doubles the capacity of older fourth-generation models.
The new 128 gigabyte version, complete with the retina display, will fetch $799 for the wifi-only version and $929 for the model that connects to cellular wireless. They become available Feb. 5, in black or white.
Already, Apple has sold more than 120 million of its popular tablets. Yet, the timing of today’s announcement is particularly intriguing. Less than a week ago, Apple revealed lackluster holiday iPhone sales, reinforcing anxiety among investors that the company is fading from a growth company to a stodgy, if immensely profitable, corporation and that Google‘s Android phones can fully replace the iPhone as the go-to smartphone.
The discontent has centered in part on Apple’s lack of new, attention-grabbing product releases. It’s mostly been a slow parade of product enhancements—just like what happened this morning. Fear is high that Apple is aging and that its fate will soon parallel the elder giants in the industry, like Microsoft and IBM.
Apple shares went up 2.3% in pre-market trading. So for now, investor seems pleased, after wiping away tens of billions in market value from Apple and reducing it (momentarily) to only the second most valuable company in the world.