Apple iPad 3 Release Date 2012: The Coolest Accessories To Buy For Your New iPad

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By Cavan Sieczkowski | March 16, 2012 2:57 AM EST

Apple's new iPad, unofficially dubbed the "iPad 3," release date has finally arrived. Friday, March 16, 2012, is D-Day for the drop of Apple's next-generation tablet. The new iPad features a sharp retina display, 4G LTE capability, voice dictation, updated iSight camera, a sleek frame similar to that of the iPad 2 and price within the $499 to $829 range.

Customer response to Apple's new iPad has been "off the charts" and pre-orders for the next-generation tablet have already sold out. On March 7, Apple unveiled its third-generation iPad, to tech aficionados and Apple fans around the world. The iPad 3's Friday release date will be a global event, making the 2012 roll-out Apple's biggest yet.

Here are some of the coolest accessories on the market to buy for your new iPad. 

Do You Have Computer Vision Syndrome? Get Gunnar

Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS), vision problems caused by staring at a computer or tablet screen for long periods of time, affects people each and every day. According to the American Optometric Association, symptoms of computer vision syndrome include eyestrain, headaches, blurred vision and dry eyes, reported CBS News. CVS is more common in individuals who stare at a screen for two or more continuous hours at a time.

With the iPad 3 release Friday, millions will be glued to their new Apple tablets. "Computer, tablet and smartphone screens are typically held close, which causes eye strain," reported CBS News. "Also, these screens always show pixilated images, which cause our eyes to shift in and out of focus without us even realizing it. That's weakening the eye's focusing muscles, the doctor says, causing the eyes to work hard to maintain focus."

But there is solution for viewing your new iPad's retina screen in comfort. Before you buy your iPad 3, grab a pair of Gunnar Optiks. Gunnar Optiks is a brand of advanced computer eyewear designed to combat CVS. The tinted, wrap-around glasses improve contrast and filter out blue light, which is harder on the eyes. The wrap-around design keeps in humidity that helps with dry eyes.

For those who want to stay en vogue, Gunnar offers multiple frames to fit your personal style. The indoor, CVS-prevention pair comes with either amber or crystalline lenses. The outdoor pair has a cool aviator frame. The prices are also exceptionally modest for such a complexly designed product, ranging from $79 to $189 for the advanced computer eyewear. If all that is not reason enough, even 50 Cent wears them

Buy a Case! They'll Sell Out, Too

CNN reported Monday morning that manufacturers of iPad cases and covers are ramping up production to account for all of the new iPad purchases. CNNMoney highlighted the new iPad's dimensions, which are similar to that of the iPad 2. This feature gives many case-makers some leeway. However, for manufacturers using wood, plastic or metal even a millimeter could make a difference.

On March 8, iSkin announced its new cases, sleeves and carriers specifically designed for Apple's next-generation tablet. These products can be purchased on the iSkin website. The Aura (iPad 3, $100) is a folio case that will protect your iPad from any external damage and will hold it up in landscape orientation when typing.

Marco Tabini of MacWorld compiled a round-up of some of the best updated cases for the new iPad. Here are some of the items from his list:

  • Gumdrop: The Drop Tech Series (iPad 3; $60) provides hardcore protection for everyday use, as well as for any extra-rugged environment in which find yourself in the company of your tablet. Available in black, black/red, white/black, or pink/white, and built out of sturdy rubberized plastic, it is designed to provide multiple layers of protection from bumps, drops, and scratches.
  • Hard Candy: The Bubble 360 (iPad 3; $60) is a two-piece hardshell case designed to provide maximum protection while adding minimal bulk. Built using a dual polycarbonate design, the case features a convenient screen-locking mechanism that keeps dust and water out without affecting the feel of the iPad in your hand. The case is available in white or black.
  • USBFever: The Eggshell (iPad 2 and 3; $29) is an ultra-thin hard case designed to work alongside Apple's Smart Cover. Just 0.9mm thick, the Eggshell protects the back of your tablet from scratches and dents without interfering with the magnetic attachment of the Smart Cover. The Eggshell comes in clear, frosted, or black.

Click here to view Tabini's full iPad cases and covers round-up as reported on MacWorld.

Use Your iPad 3 Anywhere, Any Way

Do you have futuristic dreams of all the ways you could use your new iPad 3? Well, modulR will make those dreams come true. ModulR has some of the coolest iPad accessories around. These accessories allow you to use your iPad anywhere, any way. Products include: a shoulder strap for hands-free convenience; a hand strap for comfort and control; a slim wall mount for boardrooms or bedrooms; and a head rest strap that turns your iPad into a TV for the car.

Bag It

Shoving your iPad 3 in your purse or briefcase might not be ideal. Not only does it provide more bulk to your bag, but it also could damage an unprotected screen. There is a far more fashionable way to carry your new tablet and that is with an iPad bag.

For the ladies, Marc Jacobs makes a stunning quilted iPad case (Neiman Marcus, $495) that looks like a handbag - with a zip top, quilted body jewelry-like curb chain shoulder strap with lambskin inset and cotton-blend lining to protect the screen of your tablet. The timeless look is complemented with fun, candy colors including pink, coral, berry and bright yellow.

For the gentlemen, the Oakley Alpha Charlie messenger bag (Oakley, $100) is a cool, urban carrying case for your iPad 3 while you are on the move. The weatherproof material will keep your tablet safe from any external harm and the multi-colored body gives it a flashy look. It even comes stocked with headphones. Added bonus!

Turn Your iPad Into Photo Album

Do you ever wonder what use your iPad 3 might have while you are not actively using it? Instead of letting your tablet just sit in your bag or lay on a table, you can turn it into a digital photo album. The iPad Frame (theipadframe.com, $94.95) is one frame that can be used in three diverse ways.

You can use the iPad frame to mount your iPad 3 to the wall. "Easily slide your iPad in this picture frame to dock, charge and display your photos, movies or apps. Put in on your night table, work desk or wall to display your iPad in landscape or portrait while still charging it."

Use it as a desk or table frame. "A beautiful frame holds your iPad securely and even when your iPad is not in the frame it will still display your favorite photo. Includes an integrated usb cable and dock connector, just slide the iPad in and it is connected to charge and sync."

Finally, make your iPad 3 an in-wall installation. "Slide in your iPad in landscape or portrait mode and your iPad will charge. Charge your iPad in style with great functionality. Don't just dock it, dock it in style. Even when your iPad isn't docked the frame still displays a photo that you put in the frame. "

Wireless Keyboards Make the Job Easy

If you plan to use your iPad 3 for business (or to write your first novel), Apple's wireless keyboard (Apple, $69) is an essential purchase. The cable-free keyboard uses Bluetooth technology to connect with your iPad, allowing you to move and type freely. It can also connect with a Mac computer. The slim design of the frame make its perfect for an uncluttered desktop.

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