Buy the More Affordable iPad 2 or Latest Version iPad “3?” | The Frugalista

Buy the More Affordable iPad 2 or Latest Version iPad “3?”

by frugalista on March 9, 2012

ipad 3 150x150 Buy the More Affordable iPad 2 or Latest Version iPad 3?Help! I’ve wanted an iPad for a few months now. I am traveling at least once a month for work and I often do presentations explaining what I do as a professional Frugalista. I even redesigned this site so that it would fit nicely on a tablet screen. I know that tablets are the future and Frugalistas must be in the game! icon smile Buy the More Affordable iPad 2 or Latest Version iPad 3? Knowing how Apple is notorious for releasing new versions, I decided to wait for the version that came out this year. Well, the iPad 3 “new iPad” looks magnificent. The announcement was worth the wait. Easy buy, right? No!

Now the iPad 2 has gone on sale, making this Frugalista question what to do! You can now buy the iPad 2 for $50 to $139 cheaper than it was before the “new iPad” announcement this week. Check out, Best Buy, for instance for lower iPad 2 prices.

Frugalista tip: Beware that some places, such as Target, are selling the iPad 2 at its original price, despite the new version being announced. Do not spend more than you need to! (Tech guru Mario Armstrong has nice info on the iPad and pricing and gifted me the image for this post.)

So what should I do? I need an iPad for my career. Do I spend the extra money and make an investment on the latest version? I don’t think there’s such a bad technology investment if you have the money saved. The online world has changed my life and played a big part of my financial success. I’m tech sexy for life!

Still, I could get an iPad 2 and still use it for my job. No, it won’t have all the bells and whistles of the “new iPad” but do I need all of that? I know a lot of happy iPad 2 users! Furthermore, I don’t want to buy into Apple’s notorious hype of the latest and greatest product. They are all pretty good, whether it’s a late version or not!

So what should I do? What are you doing to do if you are an iPad enthusiast? Is it better to buy the older version and save some cash (enough for a electric bill or car gas for a few fill ups) or buy the latest iPad version to be the most current?

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Andrew Smith March 9, 2012 at 2:14 pm

Consider the new iPad, as the long term ROI (return on investment) is much longer with the new product. And the price is not that different from the iPad 2, while how long the new iPAD will be useful is MUCH longer.

Spending a small amount of additional money upfront ($150) to be able to have a product you can keep up to a year longer before needing to buy a newer version is smart money, I’d guess. But good you are considering your options.


Benet March 9, 2012 at 2:24 pm

Natalie-for what you want to do, get the iPad 2. Frankly, I don’t think there’s enough difference to pay the extra money.

Aunt Benet


Mario Armstrong March 9, 2012 at 2:45 pm

Hey Natalie, great post and even better question! Soooo many people are asking the same thing! My 2cent s for the work you do I think you should do the new iPad for many of the reasons Andrew already pointed out. If you have an old one you can still get great money for it using and then you can apply that to the difference. In many cases you could make $100-$125 and apply that to your new one :-) Plus, I’d LOVE to see you shoot some video for ur site and new one shoots in 1080 :-)


Denitria March 9, 2012 at 3:28 pm

Hi Natalie,

If you travel a lot on only need limited computer access – like just need to refresh files/proposals and do social media – then having a tablet is great for that. Re: The “new” ipad vs ipad2 – If HD & better camera/video picture quality (as well as a 4G network) are important to you – then get the new one. Otherwise just get the previous one with the 3G (or the wifi) edition. Your biggest decision will be space. I was comfortable with 16GB for almost a year – but I think I’d prefer double that. I may upgrade size, but possibly not to the “new” ipad.

I bought my iPad2 (wifi only) last year around this time (and it was definitely at a much needed time because my laptop crashed the same month). At that time I was traveling frequently for multiple clients, one was social media based – and I was also pitching new clients. I downloaded a few apps that were crucial in me being able to complete work on the go. A cloud network (Dropbox or Rackspace), a word processing program, a presentation program.

In the year I’ve had it I have been able to use it in place of my computer on multiple occasions, and have not had many issues with connectivity by only having a wifi version. I own a hotspot, and I use it probably once every 6 mths. The differences from the new & old are not really different enough from a core usability standpoint to spend $100 more on a new one. They have the same processor and same battery life – so in the end – THAT is what you are buying.

here’s a side by side view from HuffPo


Coco March 9, 2012 at 4:03 pm

If you’re getting the basic model, I say shell out the extra $50. $100 is my generally my price threshold, so I’d think thrice about paying an extra $150 for the newest model.


Frugalista March 10, 2012 at 5:56 pm

These are all great pieces of advice! Isn’t Apple in a great position? I am still working on deciding what to buy but I will let everyone know when I figure it out! I’m thankful to have superstars like you all to help me out!! :)


Gerri @ Ninetynineways March 10, 2012 at 10:03 pm

I’m going to get my hands on an iPad 2. The price is just right and I really don’t have a need for the iPad 3 enhancements just yet.


Nikki E March 11, 2012 at 12:26 am

I say go with the iPad2, I have read the differences and like a previous post, there isn’t really a lot of differences to justify the cost.


frugalista March 11, 2012 at 8:31 am

There’s a rumor out that Sprint may get the iPad!! I think they are the easiest on the wallet, no?


LaTonya August 10, 2012 at 3:23 pm

Wow! I’ve needed (wanted) an iPad2 for awhile myself. My children have been buggingme me about an iPad any vesion!


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