iPad - The iPod Touch Blown Up

Over the coming weeks, you'll no doubt hear more about the Apple iPad from industry pundits, bloggers, fanboys, and probably your next door neighbor than you'd ever want to hear. I'm not going to go into too much depth (others will handle that for me), but I'll give an overview and a semi-realistic viewpoint from someone who doesn't live and die by Apple's hardware.

The iPad is Apple's new tablet, which has been rumored for well over a year.  Today, they finally showed it off, and... well...  take a look:


Notice anything? Go ahead, take a long, hard look. Yep, it's an iPod Touch blown up to tablet size. Apple calls it "revolutionary." I call it "obvious." The iPhone and iPod Touch are one of the most profitable things Apple has done. Is it any surprise they'd capitalize on that?

So what do I think? Here's all the random thoughts that went through my head.

  • It's another Apple device locked into iTunes. No ability to sideload applications or run software that isn't distributed through their monopoly. Really, I'm wondering how long before Apple locks their desktops and laptops to iTunes, making their store the only legitimate way to get software on their devices so Apple can get a 30% cut on everything.
  • As a tablet, I could see a lot more desired software that encroaches on what Apple's done. Office on iPad? Not likely given Apple's iWork apps. So, expect app approval controversies after this thing launches.
  • Nothing in their demo indicated the iPad will run more than one app at the same time. It's already annoying enough that the iPhone can't run an IM app at the same time as an RSS reader, but for a device I'd sit and web surf on while sitting on the couch, no multi-tasking is a severe limitation for a device like this. 
  • If their demo holds true, then no Flash support... still. Can it really be a serious web browsing device without Flash?
  • Pricing... surprisingly good for an Apple product. I pegged the starting point at around $800. $499 for 16GB and no 3G isn't terrible, though the decked out 64 gigger with 3G will be $829.
  • Only 16, 32, and 64GB huh?
  • That's cool it runs existing stuff in the App Store. That makes it far more useful out of the box.
  • A dock with a physical keyboard? Seems un-Apple like.
  • Ha! Another AT&T exclusive deal. $30 for "unlimited" web is good, but hasn't their network taken enough of a beating?
  • No USB port. So much for using things like Flash drives and controllers for gaming with this thing.
  • No front facing camera. Doesn't matter anyway, the Skype app on the iPhone is pretty neutered as it is.
  • Gaming could be interesting, but is this really something people are going to tote around to play games? When sitting on my couch, am I going to use this over my 360? 
  • 10 hours battery life? Probably not. Though even 8 would be pretty impressive.
  • Goodbye Kindle. I'd much rather use this as an e-reader.

Those are a few of my thoughts, though I'll add more as I get them.

So... will it sell? You bet it will. It's got Apple's logo on it, and $499 is reasonable enough that they're likely to move a bunch of them.

Will I buy one? I'll reserve judgment until I actually play with one in person, but based on what I've seen so far, I'd say "heck no." I want a real computer, not a gigantic iPod touch.


There is a USB "camera connection kit" which enables uploading of pictures/videos from SD or mini-USB, it seems. http://www.apple.com/ipad/specs/

I do agree with pretty much everything you said, but I still think the device will be useful for me personally, given that I use my iPhone so much.

A pimped out Kindle with all of iPhone's features in a greatly enhanced package for $499? Sign me up, regardless of its faults.


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