January 27, 2010

But Does The iPad Have Wings?

Jacqui Cheng of Ars Technica got some hands-on time with the new Apple iPad and got several pictures of the device.

Everybody and his brother are commenting on it, but I'm stuck with one pervasive thought: "So, what does it do well?"

Don't get me wrong, as I'm certain I would have fun with this new device, but I can't carry it around as easily as a smart phone, it lacks the tactile keyboard response of a real laptop, and the sub-ten-inch screen is pathetically small when compared against the 22"-24" monitors I spend the bulk of my time on at home or at work.

Despite the relatively modest price (for Apple), I can't think of a compelling reason to rush out and buy one when they become available.

Can you?

Posted by Confederate Yankee at January 27, 2010 04:58 PM

Think of it as the iTouch's bigger brother

Posted by: Neo at January 27, 2010 05:13 PM

the $20 unlimited 3G internet access w/o subscription lock-in is pretty nice. So to is the bigger screen for looking @ webpages but you're right. It's too big and the memory is too small. It means one more case & one more thing to worry about finding a place for.

The bigger i-rumor I'm interested in is the substantial rumble of the iPhone going onto ALL cell providers by the end of summer.

Posted by: Slveryder at January 27, 2010 05:47 PM

Don't worry, people were saying the same thing about those funny mice when they first came out as well. It is a paradigm shift. It is not meant to replace your 24 inch screens or systems. But when was the last time you carried one of those over to the dinning room table or library or meeting? The media access possibilities are exciting. But over time the multitouch interface will fundamentally change how we interact with information. It is pretty much that simple. So, yes I am excited and am eagerly looking forward to getting (at least) one....

Posted by: Ken at January 27, 2010 06:50 PM

Sorry, seems like a much less portable Touch to me and that just isn't that compelling. And you can only run a single app at a time on it.

Posted by: Doug at January 27, 2010 07:41 PM


How do you figure multi-touch is the way forward?? I'd like some examples of how this is going to lead to a "paradigm shift", if you'd be so kind.

Posted by: ECM at January 27, 2010 09:51 PM

My daughter is a senior in high school, and is a typical, connected teenager (iPhone, Facebook, laptop).

Her first response ... "what good is it .. its too big to carry around."

Posted by: tomjedrz at January 27, 2010 10:18 PM

Yeah, the "netbook" was declared "dead" more than once

Posted by: Neo at January 28, 2010 07:48 AM

Kindle killer (maybe)

Posted by: Attila at January 28, 2010 12:16 PM

Yep, Apple has delivered an overgrown Touch, lacking even the functionality of an iPhone.

What we're seeing is possibly a compromise of functionality for battery longevity, but Apple's hamstringing of the device with a hobbled operating system that only does one thing at a time is particularly annoying, especially to folks that were hoping for a truly independent portable computing device. The lack of a 'multi-tasking' capability is a HUGE miss, and will likely be the epitome of bad moves based upon Apple's insistence on device configuration control. Insisting that the iPad be tethered via another machine (for "updates/synch), while pushing apps that channel people into a content acquisition structure that Apple controls - well, it's nice to want to have it all, Mr. Jobs, but this combo is just a bit too much, resulting in a product that falls well short of the mark labelled 'excellence'.

I think Apple has just released their version of "Microsoft Bob".

Posted by: Wind Rider at January 28, 2010 12:41 PM

I think this might be history repeating itself - think Apple Newton as opposed to iPod.

They're out in front of the market a bit too far, with a product a bit too thin.

The Apps Store conceit will work for a limited device such as a phone. But I do not see big sales for this thing, after the fanboy rush is over.

I suspect the real excitement will come later, when the Lenovo tablet/laptop hybrid hits the market - that has thus far been the surprising item, little-noted by the mainstream press as Lenovo is simply that Chinese conglomerate which swallowed IBM's laptop line...

Color me skeptical.

Posted by: wpw at January 28, 2010 12:46 PM

It is a paradigm shift.


People have been trying on and off for almost 20 years now to get the general public to buy tablets. There was a mini-wave of them during the 486 era and they all went down like the titanic.

These efforts have ALL invariably failed because the tablet form factor pretty much blows for anything other than very specialized verticle markets.

You can't push a "paradigm shift" with hardware that makes your life exponentially more difficult and limited than hardware that cost only incrementally more and is vastly more capable.

People (in general) aren't that stupid. Some will be of course, since Apple has following that their own market consultants refer to as being like a "cult" where objective analysys simply isn't a factor.

Posted by: Purple Avenger at January 28, 2010 09:48 PM