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iPad to Launch with near-HD Apps

The endlessly marketed, long-awaited launch of Apple's iPad — a sort of really big iPhone but without the phone, camera, or multitasking — is set for its American debut this Saturday (April 3) and "HD" will apparently be part of the sales strategy.

We're putting "HD" in quotes because depending on which Apple-centric Web site or Mac blogger you believe, the iPad will not really be offering HD for its 9-plus inches diameter screen. The quality will maybe approach, but not quite achieve, 720p.

Still, most early online reports suggest that many of the apps now available for the much tinier iPhone (we lost count after 125,000) will also be available for the iPad – but "HD" has been added to their names.

While a lot of other products ranging from sunglasses to radio stations have used "high definition" as a way of marketing their wares in instances where the product in question obviously is not HD television, the iPad could muddy those definitions a bit if a lot of the new tablet computer's available apps have "HD" tacked onto their names.

Yet as several reputable tech publications are pointing out on the eve of Apple's launch — such as PC World — the iPad (at least the first couple of editions this spring) will not be capable of HD video.

And as for that other key component of all HD formats… surround sound? Not hardly.