Just six months after the launch of the iPad 3 - or the new iPad, as you might know it - Apple has announced that it has updated the iPad with a new processor, camera, and the company's new Lightning connector. Pocket-lint was on hand to have a quick play with the new model ahead of its public launch.

Okay, so you're probably looking at our pictures and wondering what's different. Physically it is virtually identical, the only visual difference being the addition of the Lightning connector at the bottom. It is the same size, the same weight, the same Retina Display as the "new" iPad.

What's changed then? Well Apple has used the refresh to add a beefier processor - the A6X CPU - that promises to be twice as fast as the current new iPad (the iPad 3) and faster than the iPhone 5.

Apple has also added a rear iSight 5-megapixel camera and, despite a better processor and improved graphics, it still has the same 10 hours of continuous battery life. Wi-Fi gets a boost too, meaning it should work around your house better.

ipad 4 pictures and hands on image 3

Apple has also announced that the iPad 4 will be LTE compatible, and notable in the background of Apple's San Jose presentation was the EE logo, suggesting the UK will be able to enjoy faster network speeds when the iPad 4 arrives in Blighty.

So what does all that mean? In our quick play, apps did load faster and firing up games like Real Racing HD seemed even quicker than on the office iPad 3. Whether that speed difference is noticeable over a period of time is too early to tell. 

READ: iPad mini or iPad 4: What's the difference?

The speed isn't as noticeable as in the jump from the iPad 2 to the iPad 3 and based on our first play we wouldn't recommend you flog your iPad 3 and go and buy a new iPad 4 unless you really need 4G or the Lightning connector.

We will be testing the new iPad 4 more when we get one in for a review in the coming weeks.

Of course, the iPad 4 isn't the only new iPad that Apple launched today: the company also announced the iPad mini.

READ: iPad mini pictures and hands-on