What marketers need to know about the iPad 2.

It’s official.

The Second Generation iPad was recently unveiled by none other than Steve Jobs. In his signature black turtleneck and faded blue jeans, Jobs touted the features and power of his newest tablet. He expects this upgrade (dubbed the iPad 2) to sell at least 20 million units in 2011. This projection equates to a monstrous 80% share of sales in the U.S. tablet market. Considering Apple sold 15 million iPads in 2010, few doubt his projection.

But what does this new technology mean to marketers and their brands?

At first glance, the iPad 2 seems to be a predictable upgrade. It’s faster, skinnier and smarter than ever before. But this alone won’t change the majority of brand-consumer interactions. The real opportunity lies in the addition of the forward and rear facing cameras. And while the iPhone 4 currently comes equipped with this technology, the iPhone’s small screen limits the dynamic experiences QR codes and augmented reality plug-ins might be able to produce.

That’s not even scratching the surface. Matthew Szymccyzk, CEO of interactive agency Zugara, imagines features like “click to call” services embedded into ads, bringing real faces to brands. From customer service to sales representatives, the uses of the cameras could get very interesting.

But Apple didn’t stop there. Rigged with an HDMI output, their newest toy has the potential to go from a personal device to a social device. With an HDMI cord, your iPad can now be viewed on your 62” television for parties, presentations or any other event. From a marketer’s perspective, this HDMI output is yet another way branded content could be shared between consumers.

These additions, along with the power upgrades, make the iPad 2 a medium for marketers to seriously consider looking ahead. To sweeten the deal, Apple has decided to slash its minimum purchase price of iAds in half. Despite last year’s hefty price tag of $1 million dollars, Apple claims 60 brands signed with their mobile advertising platform and hope the reduction of price along with the iPad’s new features will drive even more brands to their tablet.

So forward-thinking marketers take notice: This tablet may change everything.

The iPad 2 via Engadget

iPad 2 vs. original iPad via Engadget

Apple iPad 2 Makes Incremental, Not Monumental Changes via Fox News

Apple iPad 2: What You need to Know via Gigom