Customers were actually having trouble telling the difference between the two screens.
I bought the new iPad primarily for the display. I have WiFi only, so LTE meant nothing to me. I knew from the iPhone how useful the Retina Display is over time, especially for reading. There’s a reason I’d frequently still choose to read on that device than my iPad 2. My 50+ year old eyes need all the sharpness they can get.
I believe anybody would get used to the RD over time (which makes it hard to go back), but I also believe the change is something most wouldn’t notice at first glance. Unless you already know, or can appreciate, the ultimate difference a RD makes, or you need LTE, or the extra RAM is important because, say, you want lots of Safari tabs open, save $100 and get an iPad 2 for now. Better yet, save $150 and get a refurbished iPad 2 with the same warranty as a new model. That’s a phenomenal deal.
The money you save can go straight into the fund for the next iPad.