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First-gen iPad design shows room for camera

updated 11:00 am EST, Tue February 2, 2010

Groundwork or atavism?

The frame of the first-generation iPad is meant to hold a camera, even though no camera is present, a repair company observes. Mission: Repair says it has already received an initial shipment of spare iPad parts, ahead of the device's March release date. In examining the frame, technicians have noticed an unexpected slot which perfectly fits the camera module from a unibody MacBook, including components like the ambient light sensor.

The find could have broad implications. Apple may for instance have wanted to put a camera in the iPad but pulled it out at the last minute, whether out of cost concerns or because of technical difficulties. The idea would support pre-announcement rumors that the tablet was going to have at least one camera, and explain references to camera options in the iPad SDK. Apple may alternately be laying the groundwork for a second-generation iPad, which will probably ship a year after the first.

The situation echoes that of the third-generation iPod touch, for which pre-release evidence strongly indicated camera plans. The hardware is thought to have been pulled just before going into production, a result of component flaws. The only iPod to have a camera at present is the smaller, cheaper iPod nano.

by MacNN Staff




  1. pairof9s

    Joined: Dec 1969



    It just didn't make sense not to have an iSight cam on the iPad. Guess it was the victim of an aggressive launch schedule. We'll probably see it in next version.


  1. Constable Odo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I'm willing to bet there was a problem with

    using a camera since the iPod Touch was also rumored to carry a camera but didn't because of some recording or hardware problems. It had been rumored that this tablet was in the works for a long time and had been pushed back before, so I wouldn't think it was rushed. IMHO. I sort of wonder about the practicality of a fixed position camera in the tablet. It would probably show some pretty odd face shots unless you could aim it just right. When flipped to the side it might even look even weirder.

  1. Triath.lon

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Tablet Camera should be in-screen

    they did talk about camera dispersed throughout the screen somehow, so when you are looking at your tablet's screen, you are always looking right into the camera. I don't remember the details, but Apple was talking about it.

  1. facebook_Jason

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Feb 2010


    Never plans for a 1st gen

    The pre-announcement rumors that it would have a camera were simply speculative and wishful thinking. If Apple wanted a camera in it, they would have made that happen. There could be a million reasons why they didn't do it, but problems or inability were not one of them. What was the cost to value ratio for example?

    The spot for a camera has got to be for version 2 or later. Must easier to support adding a camera in from a software perspective only without worrying about re-engineering the frame as well.

    As for the camera being missing due to component problems (the same issue with the Touch), then explain the iPhone. Got a camera. Has since day 1. Components work just fine. Same OS too. Shouldn't be a problem.

    That brings me to my next issue. The SDK. Everyone is harping on the SDK allowing for camera calls. Really? You're amazed at this? It's the iPhone OS which, you may remember I mentioned a minute ago, has had a camera since the beginning. 3.2 supports both iPad and iPhone so could it be that the camera support is for the phone? How has the phone been forgotten about?

    It's not a Touch so stop drawing comparisons between Apple's and Oranges (so to speak). Apple was capable of getting it in this version if they wanted. It wasn't a plan for this version but rebuilding hardware is expensive and stupid. They're thinking ahead which apparently, nobody in the media is doing.

  1. syzygi

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Steve is not only brilliant at hardware, he's brilliant at marketing.

    Of course they are planning to have a cam in the iPad. But it's smarter not to have one in v1. People are going to buy the iPad v1 because it's the first of an awesome new kind of device not because it has cam or not. You get people to buy the iPad v2 to upgrade to a cam. Simple no?

  1. dliup

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Completely fake. Bezel too thin. You can print a 100% scale size of iPad and see whether the above photos make sense.

    100% scale, high resolution iPad printable image:

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: problem with

    I'm willing to bet there was a problem with using a camera since the iPod Touch was also rumored to carry a camera but didn't because of some recording or hardware problems.

    Or it was just a rumor?

    And that was some 5-6 months ago when the iPod Touch was launched, which means a camera in it would have to have been taken out a month or two before then (so they can start the manufacturing process, and the case doesn't have a big hole in it where the camera was supposed to be).

    Don't you think Apple could have figured out this mythical issue in that time?

    More so, how much of that can be true, since Apple has had no trouble putting in a camera in the sibling iPhone?

    I sort of wonder about the practicality of a fixed position camera in the tablet. It would probably show some pretty odd face shots unless you could aim it just right. When flipped to the side it might even look even weirder.

    People have fixed position cameras in desktops and laptops. This is no different (and why they have your picture on the screen, so you can see what they're seeing).

    As to being flipped on it's side, that is no issue at all. The iPod/iPhone/iPad already have the technology to know it was flipped, so it would know how to rotate the camera angle. (An Acer laptop at work has a camera that flips 180 degrees so you can point it away from you, say on a white board, and has no trouble flipping the image accordingly).

    And I don't think Apple should be worrying about stupidity like "Well, if the user turns it on it's side, it won't point directly at them, so it will only catch half their face!" Users aren't so stupid as to not figure that out on their own.

    Not that video chatting is that big of a deal anyway, except for the all-important "I must see the grandkids today!" demographic.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: FAKE

    One would have to ask a couple of tough questions, like:

    - Why is Apple shipping parts to repair places two months before these places would even start seeing them? Is Apple actually expecting these things to be failing that quickly?

    - Why would Apple be letting these repair places actually repair the iPad? The iPhone/iPods are repairable ONLY by Apple. Authorized Apple Service personnel do not work on those things. In fact, a lot of iPhone/iPod repair can't even be done at Apple stores. It's all shipped out.

    - And if you go to their web-site, you see these people 'repair' iPods and iPhones, but all of these are done 'out of warranty' (and will void warranty if done within it). So, if anything, I would think these guys are getting parts from some 3rd-party vendor or supplier, not from Apple. Ranks up there with that chinese site selling Apple Tablet frames.

  1. pairof9s

    Joined: Dec 1969



    What's with all the comments relating it to the iPhone/iPod Touch. The article states that the framework resembles that found in a MacBook. So the camera in question is an iSight video camera, not a still camera found in iPhone 2/3G or even the video camera found in the 3GS.

  1. facebook_Kassmi

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Mar 2012


    reparation ipad

    un site très utile merci de partager avec nous. merci beaucoup! reparation ipad

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