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.
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.
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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.