At the time of publication, the iPad 2 is the current version of the popular tablet computer and is powered by a standard lithium-polymer battery that, when fully charged, holds 6,930 milliamp hours, or mAh, of energy. This amount of power provides the iPad 2 with up to 10 hours of operational time and up to 720 hours, or 30 days, of standby time.
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It's important to understand that the battery life times for the iPad 2 were gathered in ideal laboratory settings and not in real-life situations. Minimizing the computer's display brightness settings, disabling its Wi-Fi connection when not in use and disengaging its GPS application are a few things you can do to get battery life times that more closely resemble those reported by the manufacturer. While the tablet will not function without a properly charged battery, it will operate if connected to a power source, even if the battery is dead.
Because the iPad 2 accesses both the 2G and 3G networks, the machine's battery life will vary based on which network is accessed more often. Designed to facilitate graphic-rich content, the 3G network generally consumes less energy than the 2G network. The 2G network was designed for voice and text data, but is able to handle graphic-rich content, but at a slower rate than the 3G network. Setting the device to only access the 3G network will consume less energy, because the 2G network has to work harder to download graphic-rich content.
An assisted-GPS system is another of the iPad 2's energy-guzzling features. If left engaged when not in use, the computer's A-GPS will lead to a shorter battery life. The computer's A-GPS system uses a combination of cellular tower and satellite signals for its navigational functionality and requires constant contact with the signal givers. This constant contact requires a lot of energy to maintain, which is necessary when you are using the GPS application. The A-GPS also includes a location-based services feature that provides you with contact information for nearby emergency and commercial services, such as hospitals, gas stations, restaurants and hotels.
The iPad 2 features a 0.7-megapixel primary camera that captures images at up to 960 by 720 pixels of resolution and is capable of recording high-definition video. A secondary 0.3-megapixel camera gives the tablet videoconferencing capability. Heavy use of the iPad 2's camera and video features, or any of the machine's other features, will contribute to a shorter battery life.