The iPad 2 is still being sold as a $399 alternative to the iPad 3, and that means Apple is still making them. The $399 iPad 2 isn’t actually identical to the original one though, as it uses 32nm architecture for the chip instead of 45nm. That means the chip is more power efficient, and tests show that this actually makes quite a difference when it comes to how long the iPad 2 will run for.

AnandTech has done some testing on the new iPad model 2.4 and found it to be quite a bit more efficient than the original. A 16% increase in battery life for web browsing, 18% for video, and a 29% increase for gaming is quite significant, and with this increase only being for the 16GB WiFi model, it may actually be enough to persuade someone to go for that version instead of more expensive ones. I mean seriously, 15.7 hours of HD video playback on the iPad 2.4 is not to be taken lightly. With the iPad 3 clocking 11.2 hours in the same test, the difference in battery life between the two is becoming so massive that I’d totally see the iPad 3 sales suffer for it for some people who find battery life more important than screen resolution. I only wish they had made an iPad 2.5 with the iPad 2 specs and the iPad 3’s 42.5Wh battery. Simple extrapolation from the current 25Wh battery would suggest such a device would get almost 27 hours of video playback.

[AnandTech]