Everyone who purchased a “New iPad” or iPad 3 is a victim of one of the worst consumer abuses in Apple retail history.
Just months after its release as the newest and most expensive iPad model, Apple very quietly and suspiciously discontinued the “New iPad” (iPad 3) in an unprecedented move.
The iPad 3 went on sale in Spring of 2012, replacing the iPad 2 which remained on sale at a discounted price. Apple customers who purchased the iPad 3 paid $100 above the iPad 2 price for the newest iPad model.
After a few months, in a very unusual and unprecedented move, Apple discontinued the iPad 3 and replaced it with the “iPad with Retina Display” (iPad 4). It did so very quietly, and in the shadow of the iPad mini launch.
The reason for the secrecy is obvious. Apple has never discontinued a product within months of its release. When the iPad 3 replaced the year-old iPad 2, for example, the older model remained on sale at a discounted price, and it remains on sale today.
Compare that to what happened to the “New iPad” or iPad 3. After quietly releasing the iPad 4 with its heavily upgraded processor and new lightning connector, the iPad 3 was purged from existence. Apple was betting that nobody would notice, especially those customers that bought the iPad 3 for $100 above the iPad 2 price.
It is obvious that the "iPad with Retina display" was originally intended to be the successor to the iPad 2, but for some unknown reason Apple came to market with an inferior product. They attempted to quietly cover up for this by discontinuing the iPad 3 and replacing it with the newer model. Ironically, the iPad 2 remains on sale on the Apple website as though it were the most recent model before the “iPad with Retina Display” (iPad 4).
This is yet another example of Apple betraying and insulting its most loyal customers. Early adopters should be rewarded, not ripped off. Apple should apologize and offer a partial refund to iPad 3 owners that overpaid for a prematurely discontinued model that Apple itself deemed undeserving of living out its full product cycle.