Apple put components on a diet to keep the iPad 2 thin

Apple is well received for its intracacies in design, and it appears it tinkered with the components of the iPad 2 to fix the arguably unwieldy first generation’s weight and size.

The total thickness of the iPad 2 is just 8.8 millimetres, slashing 34 percent from the 12.4 mm thickness of the original. It also weighs in at 600 grams, lighter than it’s fatter, older brother by 15 percent at 700 grams.

The way Apple managed it, according to IHS iSuppli, was by cutting down on dimensions of the components that make it tick. 

The iPad 2’s battery subsystem thickness was reduced 59 percent from 6.1mm for the iPad 1 to just 2.5mm. It’s a “major shift,” according to IHS iSuppli. Apple trimmed the battery by moving from two thick cells into three thinner variations, which flattened the structure of the battery. It also let Apple rubbish a comparably bulky injection-molded plastic support frame. It’s the most significant redesign which also shrank the weight of the iPad 2 by 5 grams, but maintaining the same battery lifetime.

Noticeably, Apple got rid of a stamped sheet metal frame from the display which cut thickness from 3 mm to 2.5 mm – down 17 percent. It also used a cutting edge glass technology that thins the overlay from 0.8mm to 0.6mm for the iPad 2.

There’s suspicion from analysts that the new durable glass came from Asahi Glass Co., which peddles its recently released Dragontail Glass technology rather than huge cans of Japanese beer. It is more flexible and way more durable.