Balanced & objective too, thanks.
Mind you, as you've come out and said "No" to the holiest of holy Apple devices, I'm looking forward to the descent of the iTards on this forum. :-)
As the iPad goes on sale in the UK (and eight other countries), I've had my own "magical and revolutionary" Apple tablet for exactly 56 days. And I'm using it less and less each day. My fading relationship with my iPad reminds me of a long-ago college fling with a young lovely. High anticipation, fervent consummation, growing …
I second that and add this: there are additional possibilities.
Many people seem to think that j-bking your apple device is somehow criminal or morally wrong (don't see how, but hey).
As long as you're careful, it's simply a way of getting some of that freakish control back into your own hands. There's an entire world of wonderful *legal* apps out there, created by hard-working professional programmers. I buy stuff both from apple's store and from the alternatives and i'm much closer to having a real portable computing device for it -- as opposed to just a nifty shiny gadget.
Anyways, i'm not advocating for or against it. Just adding to the mix.
Morally wrong, certainly not!
However, if the Apple license agreement requires you to use ONLY Apple approved software, then technically you are legally in violation of that agreement. Don't like the agreement, then don't buy the product.
I am fairly certain (have not checked recently) that Apple does have such a ridiculous wording in their device and software licenses. I know that it was "illegal" Apple OSX on other laptops.
Now you agree to the terms by buying the product and not returning it, so in the bare sense it is a legally binding agreement. The big question for a defense would be does this agreement restrict fair-use law as it applies to the product. I think you may have a case here, but just like all the EULA that everyone clicks through, there is no telling until some circuit courts (or the the supremes) weigh in on a judgment involving this issue. Until then its all somewhat speculation.
Now even assuming that Apple wins in court, and their bogus restrictions are considered a valid binding agreement; I'm still not sure that they could really "do" anything about it, other than not help you. e.g. if you jailbreak your device, they have the legal right to void your warranty, and not provide support
Now if you jailbroke 10,000 ipads, and were selling them as Ubuntu pads......well I'm just not sure - Apple would seemingly be happy with the making that money, but past behavior shows they might try to sue and stop such sales. They have been cannibalistic on their knock-off vendors in the past, and they seemed very against people loading Apple OS on other machines as well, going to so far to take legal measures.....
Bottom line to me is they are bunch of a**holes, and why would you want to do business with someone who so much wants to control and restrict your behavior. I'm less a fan of Google these days, but I'm prone to buy a Android based phone next, as its open source, and I feel i have more choice and control over MY phone
....in six months time when the Mk2 comes out with all the stuff missing from the Mk1.
Thats why I cant understand that folks havent learnt from the past Apple gadget releases that the first one is always a glorified prototype that doesnt show all its cards.
Several hundred quid is lot to pay for a gimped market tester prototype.
What that is missing from Mk1 do you really imagine Apple being wiling to add to Mk2? There'll still be no Flash, no direct access to external storage*, a fee to pay if you want to write your own code and an approval process to determine whether you may run anybody else's. What I'm hoping for is a killer app that makes the device suddenly so useful and obvious that none of us who have difficulty seeing the point at the price can understand why we didn't think of it before.
* though I guess with HTML5 you could set up a networked movie store if it had an HTML front-end?
So many people complain when a portable device doesn't have a front-facing camera. "No video calls!" they cry. Video calls might be a "nice-to-have" kind of thing but is it really such a "must-have" for so many people? I think people really haven't thought it through enough. Would you want video when calling in "sick" to work? Or calling your spouse from the pub, claiming you have to work late? Or even when being completely truthful with the person on the line but having just gotten out of the shower or still being half-asleep and looking like crap in the morning, or any of dozens of other reasons you wouldn't want your image transmitted?
If video calling becomes commonplace and the de facto standard way of making calls, then not sending video will become suspicious. Personally, I'd rather video calls remained a niche application and not the expected way of doing things.
with "I'm a Mac" vs "I'm a PC." Did they ever have "I'm a UNIX admin" in these? I wonder how he would've been dressed. I'm guessing combat boots, cargo pants, half a dozen multitools hanging off the belt, beard (natch), wild longish hair and maybe a joint hanging from one corner of the mouth.
I have an external USB harddisk.
Some of my machines will support it and provide 5V DC as required. Some will not (device load causes 5V power bus to lose voltage), and this extends to work computers too. On the machines that won't run the drive standalone I run a powered USB hub and everything ok, apart from the pain in the backside factor. Seems it's all down to the PC power supply and the USB device power consumption.
This artice is interesting. Don't use Apple stuff myself as too expensive, but what I've seen I've drooled over ! I think the article has reached the right conclusion in that the device does not fit in any current category. Bet that will change anyone ?
I have a palm PDA which with instant power on and use is really useful. The standard palm application suite leaves lots to be desired. Add Open Source applications and suddenly the device becomes indispensable as it becomes truly useful anywhere. Lesson to Apple here ????????
You may find that you've got it the wrong way round - the USB standard allows a device to request up to 500mA, but not all hosts can cope with that, especially if they're supporting multiple devices. A four-port hub with a total power capacity of 1.5A is technically within spec, but can't support four 500mA devices, whereas it can support two of those and two 250mA devices.
Laptop USB ports tend to be built down to a price/power budget and may struggle to give 500mA. It's also the case that many desktop PCs were capable of providing much more than 500mA, so they would be less likely to be fussy about things.
What you do find is that custom USB power chips exist that allow the device to draw a given maximum power from the host, and that if the current drain of the backlight and processor is high enough, all the USB current goes to supply that and none is available for battery charging. Similarly, if the device has asked for 500mA and has been turned down, it may opt to only draw the 100mA it's allowed without asking and power the electronics but not attempt to charge the battery.
The final point is that Apple may not claim that the device conforms to the USB spec. I believe that they make no such claim for the iPod. Electrically and from a software protocol perspective it may be perfectly compliant, but the spec also requires use of standard USB connectors and the iPod has a custom one. I don't think there's a USB logo on a standard iPod lead for this reason - it's not compliant with the mechanical aspect of the standard.
Or maybe you're living in an alternate reality where this device hasn't sold more than 1M units making it the fastest consumer device to make $1M revenue? Lost the plot, yeah, in this greedy world of capitalism, Apple now is number 2 in market cap.
Yeah, that's losing the plot. Or perhaps your criteria would put us all in that losing the plot world??
"Lost the plot, yeah, in this greedy world of capitalism, Apple now is number 2 in market cap."
Big whoop. Volkswagen were the most highly valued company on the planet a while back - a matter of real interest only to a bunch of people holding short positions on their stock - but that doesn't mean Volkswagen had "won" or that you should go and buy one of their cars.
And to think capitalism had lost its mindless cheerleaders. Fail indeed.
What revived Apple was some new sleek Laptops,Mp3 player and Iphone. Surely he raised the bar with that Ifart and changed some of the Market rules about DRM, distribution and RIAA, which Napster couldnt. He became a proxy for DRM imposed by RIAA as face saving by legalising paid downloads (who killed Napster)
However, to me it now appears that just becasue of the Iphone success, the fanbois believe that he can do no wrong. Worst, HE now believes that whatever he does (hobby) is divine and lapped up by the fanbois doesnt mean success. Its like the deaf/blind following the ........... Steve's an egoistic boss and sycophants support him to the hilt. Thats not success. Ipad is still to find a useful purpose. The new thing (TV for $99 on another post here?) is also a hobby and eager beavers will still lap it up. I can compare BBC Iplayer (without cloud) with that and we already have it. But when Steve launches it, Ill see people like you queing up down Regents street salivating, cos its from St..Jobs.
Market capitlisation is the Wall st. boys' playground and nothing to do with what Steve's latest iteration is. They are banking on precisley fanbois like you to make some more dollars.
Its distorted at best.
Remember the Netscape Navigator market valution when launched? FFS, it was only a browser but the price was stratospheric !
So stop judging Apple by the market cap.
Fact remains, Seve's lost the plot and a sound direction. Wont last. Its only a glorfied Ipod (internet device) with flaky wifi. And a 3g card to get some more DATA ACCESS DOLLARS from you.
Wake up and smell the coffee, available elsewhere, not only in Regant street.
Apple is No 2 in Market Cap so what? The reason MS is lower is because they have the sense to buy up as many shares as poss with spare cash and as market cap = share price * number of shares outstanding they have a lower Market Cap than Apple. But MS have higher levels of profit . BTW they also own hunk of Apple.
"That said, no one is forcing you, dear Reg reader, to buy an iPad/Pod/Phone —"
Quite right which is why I don't own any of them. Apple's devices are too proprietary for me.
A well balanced article. I have one additional comment though:
For all that you say that you don't like the device, Apple still has your money. They don't care anymore. The same problem continues with Hollywood films. A lot of people believe they are turning our few good films but as long as people keep paying to see the rubbish films (often "because there's nothing else") then they will not be motivated to improve their products.
"Quite right which is why I don't own any of them. Apple's devices are too proprietary for me."
Same here. The devices seem nice enough. But the fact that I cannot write apps for myself and friends without jail-breaking is a deal breaker. I simply will not use my engineering talents to support someone's proprietary walled garden.
"For all that you say that you don't like the device, Apple still has your money. They don't care anymore."
That's a good point, apple has no incentive to open up since apple already knows its users are willing to part with their money for the closed models.
is catered for. It's a bit twiddly for the developer, but little effort for the users.
Really, thank you for that info.
It still doesn't satisfy me however. I dislike that I'd need to pay yearly to be in the iPhone Developer Program (as opposed to a one time fee for the development kit which I could use indefinitely). Apple can change the terms and fees at any time, it just doesn't seem right.
I could possibly overlook the above, but even then as a legal user the process itself seems to be unnecessarily complicated, and restrictive.
"An iPhone application in development can run only on devices with provisioning profiles generated by the application developer. As iPhone Developer Program members, you and your fellow team members install these files on your devices as part of your development process. To include users that are not part of your team (also known as testers) in your testing strategy, you must add them as part of your team in the Program Portal and issue them test provisioning profiles (also known as ad-hoc provisioning profiles), which allow them to install on their devices applications that have not been published to the App Store."
"Before a developer can send you an application for testing, they must register your device with Apple under their application-testing program."
So now, even as a registered developer, I have to deal with crappy DRM administered by apple so that me and my friends can run our own apps? With all this hassle, it'd be more palettable to jailbreak the thing and accept the consequences. I'm sure this is exactly what the majority of developers end up doing.
I'm sorry but my vote is still for an open platform.
QUOTE: "So now, even as a registered developer, I have to deal with crappy DRM administered by apple so that me and my friends can run our own apps?"
This is why I have not got an iPhone yet. I think one would be really cool to have but with all that BS? Well, fuck that.... This is probably the major reason, the second being cost, the third being compromise (its not as good a phone as the simple nokia I possess considering signal reception, battery life etc).
Honestly, the later objections are weak ones. I can afford it, I can afford to miss calls (at some times, it would be preferable!).
yes.. grumble groan. But listen here, I acknowledge the virtues of the iPhone (UI second to none, imho), I am just not blind to its faults. This DRM is a deal breaker. I don't want to be beholden to Apple just to knock off simple apps for this darn thing.
You can just go stuff yourself, Steve, you bucking fastard.
A nice and balanced piece. Although I'm in what you'd call the anti apple camp, I'd have considered the Ipad if some the problems you highlighted weren't true.
Namely, the closed environment that Apple seem to want to enforce, The requirement to use AT&T for the 3G connections and one or two technical things such as USB ports etc.
What potentially would have help sell the Ipad to me as well would have been a forward faciing camera to be able to use the device as a video conference phone.
As it is I'm likely to be looking at ASUS/Acer for tablet PC (HP would have been in there but they've dropped the Win7 options for their Slate (I like choice :) )
"... holding the iPad for any amount of time gets uncomfortable." Nope, it's painful!
I don't have an iPad, but I have been picking it up and playing around with it at several retail locations in the USA. I have to say that holding the iPad in my left hand and taping around with my right hand, the back of my left hand starts to hurt after a few minutes, I do mean HURT!!
I am not sure why exactly, But I think it's because it's thinner at the edges than in the middle. One would think that design feature would eliminate any issues, I guess not, for me.
So all those people with repetitive strain injuries are at fault, not the products or environments which cause them? Yes, if they seek help, the doctor will probably tell them to stop using something that's so unergonomic. Steve Jobs playing the maestro on stage may whip up a frenzy amongst Apple's "base", but the story after prolonged use (that is, once the posturing ends) can be quite different.
Yes, nice piece. But lets face it, despite the brilliant hardware and the luscious interface, the Jobsian lock-down on developers and users is really starting to make him look like more the evil step-father than the hip uncle, and the products acquire that taint I now associate with chinese hairbands (http://www.snopes.com/medical/toxins/hairband.asp). When is apple going to realise it's reached the fork in the road, and for it's own good it is going to have to open up these devices?
I think the value of the iPad is questionable if you are already a seasoned computer (esp. laptop) user. I like the concept of the iPad, but I already carry a laptop almost everywhere. I need multiple platforms, use 5 different compilers and host of other development/design applications that will probably never be suited to the iPad environment. I have my music and videos onboard too - so when would I use an iPad?
But then, I don't think it was designed with me in mind (or probably many other Reg readers). Apple is targeting people who want to use the Internet (email, browsing/shopping), store and view media (show their photos, read books, watch films, listen to music), or create modest documents (writing/presentation)... *but* they struggle with computers. I know many people like this because I'm often called upon to help with problems. When you have a gift for using technology, and years have past since you first started, it's hard to remember or understand why anyone should find this difficult - but the plain truth is that computers (even Apple's) still require a lot know-how, and either don't have the time, patience, or ability to learn.
I think the iPad will be brilliant for all of those people who are struggling to use a computer (or have given up) because - from the users point of view - it isn't a computer. It gets straight to the heart of what a lot of people want to do at an incredibly intuitive level. And I think this also explains why so many power users call it a toy. From their perspective, it is. But it isn't designed with them in mind.
That may only be for the time being. It's possible that the potential popularity of such accessible computing devices will make it so these elements you mention -- uploading, backing up, etc, etc. -- will be offered by either apple or their competition.
I think it's a little early in the game to start pulling definite conclusions. Apple's ipad is only the first in what could be a whole buttload of such gadgets -- acer just gave us a glimpse of theirs, dell's got something in the works, etc.
Who knows, one might even offer enough to interest even long time power users.
@Syd: "... it doesn't work as a stand-alone computer, does it? You can't upload photos from your digital camera; you can't back-up your documents"
You're still in the wrong mind-set - what's "upload"? What's "backup"? If you've seen what most average folks do with a full computer, you'll know that very few even understand the need to backup let alone actually do it. The facility is a total waste.
I haven't looked deeply into what the iPad is capable of, but there's definitely a camera connection kit for those who want their pics on the iPad. And if you don't have a computer, the staff at the Apple store will get you kicked off with iTunes etc. From there, what do you need a computer for? Everything they want is laid on for them - music, news, books, games, video, TV - through the Internet.
Well the average user does indeed mainly use email and web browsing/online shopping. Backup is never a total waste - those same users that don't do it whinge their arses off when it all goes tits up.
Ah yes, the marvel of a camera connection kit. Users do indeed like to take photos, lots of them, and videos too with these little marvels. The average compact camera these days has around 8 megapixels. That translates to at least 5 or 6MB per photo. Won't be long until that poxy little bit of storage is filled up will it.
This *is* a device that definitely needs a computer to make it functional and to state that it isn't is utterly disingenuous.
@Mark 65 "Won't be long until that poxy little bit of storage is filled up will it."
I don't think Apple's plans have been fully unveiled yet. Apple is building a huge new data centre, it purchased LaLa, and the AppleTV is rumoured to become something along the lines of the iPad too. To my mind, this all points to Apple aiming to make these devices a mere portal to content stored, managed, and backed up elsewhere. This takes the burden off users who struggle to understand filing and backup systems, or are constantly running out of room to store all the content they own. IMO - watch this space.
Also, bear in mind that the detail in an 8 megapixel image is lost on most people. Look at the way photos are usually uploaded for friends/family at far lower resolutions - and everyone is happy. It wouldn't surprise me at all if the average consumer ends up keeping images at the resolution of the device they view them on.
Apple has done some radical things in the past, eliminating technologies thought to be indispensable. I well remember the uproar when they dropped floppy disks from their entire line-up. Maybe this time they aim to eliminate the whole computer.
Because a lot of people like to upload their pictures to MyTwitFriendFace. I'm actually surprised this wasn't catered for - particularly when many of the more popular applications on the iPhone are things like photo uploaders for facebook or twitpic, and status updaters and the like.
A lot of people believe that some gadget or other will improve their life.
I've just seen in a gadget catalog a dog ramp so that your fat and or elderly dog can get into your car. It's a plank! Just go and buy a plank!!!
As for pad devices, when they cost $100 and run linux I'll buy one.
mines the one with the Bonios
...from me, if you want one, need one, then buy it and enjoy.
Personally, I have no desperate requirement for an iPad, notebook, netbook, or any other "intermediate device".
I cannot envision any situation that would require an additional device to my (grotesquely overspecced) PC, and my mobile phone (Nexus One running Android 2.2). so equally, I won't be queuing for an iPad, or for any other kind of slate, tablet, or similar.
Call me a cynic, but I really don't get the hostility and nonsense flung between the rival camps of fanbois. I'm not going to malign someone for choosing differently to me.
Buy what you want to buy, enjoy it while you can.
It's amusing to see that the Crusade of the Jobs is working. Though you all seem to hate it, you discuss it as frequently as an atheist discusses Jesus (yes, I am, the former).
The device might suck for what Apple intended it to function as, but just as with the App Store becoming a revolution for the indie game developer community, this little piece of design wonder I think is going to be the perfect computer for our factory floor.
With our MIS being a light weight web app and the servers doing all the heavy lifting, it's perfect. No dirty fingers on keyboards or mice or running around to workstations.
I'll be interested to see if I go through the same waning of ardour. Hasn't happen after 24 hours - who said it wouldn't last?
I agree that Safari needs tabbed browsing, and I do hope it happens at some stage - most sw issues do get sorted eventually. Flash I don't miss, but I also agree that there's no reason not to make it an option - buy Click2Flash and make it so you only have Flash running when you need it.
As with the iPhone, it will be the software and apps that define it's utility, not the hardware - though it could do with more RAM. I can see some revolutionary apps coming out soon, so I wouldn't make judgements yet...
Excellent article, sir. After having taken some time to play with the iPad myself, (admittedly only a couple of hours,) I can only say that my experience mirrors what you have described.
The iPad is a nice first effort...but it’s not there yet. Apple has once more kindly walked into the minefield first, and what I have a feeling that what other companies produce a year or so after analysing Apples mistakes will be superior. While other “tablets” have existed, the iPad is the first serious attempt at this particular form factor; this be untested waters.
For me the analogue in my experience is the iPhone versus Android test. The HTC Hero was far nicer to me than an iPhone; I think largely because Apple walked into the minefield of this form factor first, and other companies could observe, and follow.
My motto is “never buy version 1 of anything,” and that your article confirms my experiences tells me that the iPad truly is like the first version of an operating system. Hold your horses and wait for SP1; other companies will shake the bugs out for you.
thanks for providing another (in a series of many) articles which provide all these offensive jackarses the opportunity to say, "not for me, only for idiots."
The ego inflation this site provides for all those people who decry the idea that someone may derive joy in a way they do not imagine is just sad.
I never imagined a consumer device that could make people feel so good about themselves for not wanting one, except perhaps the catholic church and a condom or a sexually repressed haggard housewife and a big dildo, or dare I say it, a priest and an alter boy.
"The ego inflation this site provides for all those people who decry the idea that someone may derive joy in a way they do not imagine is just sad."
What's sad is that someone derives pleasure from the valuation of a corporation, presumably not as a shareholder who is looking to liquidate their holding (or receive a dividend). That they then start to bring in all sorts of distasteful sexual references to attempt to discredit detractors of their favourite corporation (where a detractor is someone who cannot be 100% positive about that corporation's products) really does demonstrate a level of insecurity that no amount of devotion to a corporation will ever appease. That lesson will be learned some time down the road, I'm sure.
I don't know what you're trying to say, but I know you're trying to be offensive, that much is obvious. The rest makes no sense at all. As for the distasteful sexual reference, it was a joke, and if you're on here on this site reading these posts, it's a bit disingenuous that you would be surprised at anything like that as this site allows pretty much everything and in these posts on this forum here the offenses that are thrown around (i.e. ad hominems) are what you should be most concerned about. Something is wrong if you're not.
Why don't you fanbois get it? People don't dislike the iPad because Apple made it, they dislike it because it serves no real use for which one would be willing to pay the asking price.
It's kinda fun to surf the net on it and it's kinda an eBook reader and you can sorta take notes and blah blah blah. Nothing you can't already do with your phone/laptop/kindle/a pen and pencil. The iPad squeezes itself into a place between all of those items that is pretty much useless to anyone in the real world.
You'd like for people to pretend that it's not useless, that it's just what they've been waiting for all their lives and NOW they can really get some serious work/play done. But no, it's just not that at all.
It's a really expensive gimmick for people who like really expensive gimmicks. That's all. And if you like that, fine. But don't be getting a rod up your butt because the rest of us don't like wasting money.
"Why don't you fanbois get it? People don't dislike the iPad because Apple made it, they dislike it because it serves no real use for which one would be willing to pay the asking price."
See, if something was of no real use to me I'd ignore it. If it was of use to me, but too expensive to justify, I'd ignore it or look for a cheaper alternative. I would not be provoked into a "dislike" for it.
Unless, of course, I secretly wanted one but couldn't bring myself to justify the price and ended up all bitter and resentful of my stingy, sensible outlook on life, repeatedly telling myself it's just an expensive gimmick and a waste of money. All the people in those photos holding their new toys looking fabulously thrilled and delighted? Yeah, that would piss me RIGHT OFF.
Christmas must be fun in your house, mate.
You say that we're only vocal about our displeasure because it's Apple. But it works both ways, and I believe that you are only vocal about your pleasure because it's Apple. If anyone else had released an equally good product that had people "fabulously thrilled and delighted" (ugh almost puked at that one) you still wouldn't bother writing about it (at least not in every blog and newspaper in the western world).
And there you fanbois go again insinuating that anyone who wouldn't have an iPad is just a cheapskate who secretly really wants one. The old argument of "well you just can't afford it" No, I just don't want it. And if the media is granting Apple saturation coverage, you're damn right I'm going to offer my 2 cents rather than keep my mouth shut. If we weren't being given so many opportunities to disagree with Apple fanbois, we wouldn't be doing it.
And because we don't spend all our money on the latest craze, we can't have a fun Christmas? Well I'll tell you what, if not having toys means that you aren't able to have a fun time with your own damn family then you might as well be dead.
My first computer was a TRS80. Never had a mac, always an alternative that seemed better.
I have a desktop PC, a laptop, and a phone.
My phone is a normal phone, a sony-erricson w910i, a couple of years old with an 8gb card.
On my phone I have opera mini, an ssh client and a text reader. I bet I can can do anything with it that I could with an iPad, (as long as I can connect to my server with ssh), Plays music great too. Oh and it's a phone.
I was going to by a nexus but then I thought, "why?", I will buy an android phone next, when my current phone dies.
I am not anti-apple, I have stuck with PC's purely because of IBM open architecture and linux, not because I hate apple, but the way apple are going lately I am starting to think that Jobs has gone mad. Really, frothing, twitching, round-the-bend, mad...
Had a w910i and loved the damn thing. just a solid phone with some smartphone-like functions. Sadly its somewhere on the bottom of Lake Erie and my two attempt to get a replacement on eBay turned up some real asses trying to rip me off. So I never got a replacement unit.
It's Walkman is still far superior to the iPod on the iPhone in sound quality and was so much easier to use. The PC software was more file manager-style, would rip a High quality 256KB or VBR down to a smaller size on the fly and you didn't have to "SYNC" any of it. It was so user friendly and didn't require my time having to make play lists and syncing.
And it worked as a phone perfectly.
But this is off-topic since the whole on-topic idea is the usefulness of the iPad and his disenchantment of using it. To the author, Just keep it in the bathroom or kitchen or both and use it there. load it up with some music and get a wireless transmitter and use it casually while you eat you cereal or take a dump in the morning before you head off to work. I do this with my iPhone 3GS all the time.
The iPad is never going to be a netbook or notebook replacement and Apple probably knows that. But at the same time they figured out that the hype machine for an Apple tablet had been going on in the press for over a year now and said "what the hell, lets do something about this" and it worked. They now have the technology to design faster mobile chips that they can customize and use to their advantage. They use some of their billions to buy two ARM chip design companies and the iPad has an Apple ARM custom chip. Nothing off-the-shelf. Good for them.
But again the online press made this easy for Apple. The speculation and hype for this product, even when it didn't even exist was ridiculous.
The iPad will sell well through the year especially into the Xmas buying season but they are not a laptop replacement. I just hope the consumers know that.
"think that Jobs has gone mad. Really, frothing, twitching, round-the-bend, mad..."
I think he's become a grumpy old man, that's all. And the people around him are letting him get away with it.
Hell, my dad sits on his back porch and shoots birds with his 22 that he doesn't like. Other than that he a really nice guy. ;)
I am not sure why technologists feel that they have to tell us whether or not the iPad works for them. If it doesn't then it doesn't. So what?
The iPad isn't for you, sorry fanbois, geeks and power users. The iPad is for those who do not have a computer yet, or have one but seldom use it because it is just "too hard".
The iPad is not a toy and it's not a professional tool (at least not a professional's only tool).
The iPad is a computing device "for the rest of them".
Not sure you really understand what a computing device is supposed to be, but the iPad isn't that. It's a media-consumption device, right along side your TV, Blu-ray player, and iPod. Given the predictable, quick fade of passion for the iPad (beginning of the end already?), it might be better classified as a toy, which is exciting and beloved by children for all of two seconds before they become bored with it.
Sure you said the same thing of the iPhone and three years later - Apple is "bigger" than IBM, Intel and Microsoft..
So it is a toy, but it also allows people to - much more than Linux or MS - use it for their specific needs. And in spite of the fact that it weighs more than a phone - it also does more than a phone. I for one - tired of the iPhone's small screen - don''t get me started on the rubbish the otehr "smart" phone vendors expect you to use!
And no - for Pete's sake - it is not a phone. If you want just a phone - buy a Nokia....
It's for those who don't have a computer yet? Really? So the requirement to register it to the itunes store using a computer helps those people out how?
The ipad is, as many have said, a "companion device". It is there to use in conjunction with a PC, not to replace it.
Personally, I felt let down that Apple didn't take the role of companion device further and opened up capacities to use the ipad as an extra bluetooth input device and the app to turn the ipad into a secondary monitor should have been a native bit of functionality!
Sadly, the only companion device that has piqued my interest got shitcanned by MS :( The Courier looked like a great concept and a good bit of convergence between physical and computing worlds. Shame we'll likely never see anything like it, even tho there is a market for it.
They are ok for viewing stuff on the internet, they suck at actually producing anything. But that's an issue with all touch-only interfaces. But the design of the ipad makes it even worse. It's impractical to use for typing for any length of time one handed and awkward to use for two handed typing.
I won't be buying one. I have a netbook for when I need something small and light weight, and it does a lot more than the ipad. If I need more power I have a few laptops, including a mac book pro, but the netbook is surprisingly zippy, even running things like open office, netbeans and eclipse. I've got it dual booting winXp and Linux and it's plenty fast in either OS.
Without technologists, the willfully ignorant would have no clue what's going on or what they are being sold. They would not fully appreciate the full implications of their actions. They simply would not know what they are buying.
The iPad is a toy for people with money to burn.
The problem with the iPad being "for the rest of them" is that they still need a real computer to manage it. That rather defeats the point of the rescue.
If they can sort out their PC or their Mac well enough to get iTunes to run, much of the overhyped need (malware) for this sort of locked down device is moot.
The iPad is not a "computing device". It's an oversized iPod. Some real end users like that idea. They are not turned off by being bluntly told this or realizing it themselves.
Clearly many fanboys don't like the implication.
Critics and skeptics make them uncomfortable.
Because I stopped being immortal quite a few years ago.
The iPad is like a heat seeking market missile. The people who don't see the point are simply not the target market. It is a bit like a bunch of men puzzled over feminine protection adverts. Your opinion is truly irrelevant.
The iPad is fun. I have found it perfectly suited for 70 percent of my daily tasks while out and about. I have had a dozen colleagues say, "Done. I am getting one." when they learned of some function or another that pushed them off the "What-am-I-gonna-do-with-it?" fence.
One watched me present a ppt with it and fell out of his chair when the "laser pointer" showed up on the screen. Another saw my Windows Virtual desktop via Wyse and his jaw dropped. Still another flipped over a nav program. I get a question a day from people asking, "Can you <blank> on your iPad?"
The momentum is far from waning. I say it is just beginning.
Nice article. But I see my relationship with my iPad as being in the "great marriage" phase.
I'd be mightily interested in you people covering the iPad as it applies to the elderly, to people with disabilities and the computer-illiterate. The iPad seems to be right now one of the best devices out there for them. I've ordered one to see if my mum can take advantage of it (she has quite bad eyesight so she cannot read regular books and newspapers' font sizes. Also, she is not computer-knowledgeable at all).
Way back then a Newton was still a limited appeal device.
No amount of marketing would change that as public focus were elsewhere.
On the other hand if my recent observations of college youth is anything to go by then iPad sized and shaped shoulder bags seem to be quite 'in' at the moment. Almost waiting to be filled (ok - a UK perspective).
And why should that be important?
A small neat, trendy, fashionable bag suiting all genders accommodating an iPad.
But wait! There's more! (with acknowledgements to Russell Brown of Adobe evangelical fame)
How about you can put all (as in ALL) of your college notes, write ups, essays, course materials, ... into that one trendy bit of kit that seems oh so, so oh appealing?
Alternatively there is the huge traditional bag that is equally generous across genders, weighs quite a bit and contains a lot of pulverised tree product.
But! I suppose that time will tell.
My own take is that the time is right for widespread iPad appeal (and as posited elsewhere) that makes for widespread iPad wannabeez appeal too.
Interim conclusion: the time is right for change and who better to lead than the Apple?
There's an idealogical battle gathering pace in the consumer technology world; whether or not to allow unsigned code to run on the shiny new piece of electronics your company has just brought to market.
On one side, we have Apple, and in the console space, Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo, all desperately trying to squash any code that refuses to play in their tightly controlled little sandboxes.
Opposing them we have... well, Google is probably the only answer the man in the street would recognise. Don't get me wrong, there are others fighting in niche spaces, but people only find out about them if they care about the issue in the first place.
I bought an iPhone, but I'm no fanboi. The day I selected for purchase was carefully chosen, so as to make damn sure the model and firmware of the day (3GS, 3.1.2) could be jailbroken. Two hours after I got it home, it was set free and busily downloading a new theme from Cydia. My firmware hashes are safely stored, so that I don't have to give a toss that Steve Jobs would very much like to deny me a 3.1.2 restore should I ever need one.
So why did I buy that, and not a 'droid of some flavour? Two reasons - the App Store and the hardware. The App Store has a huge inventory; the hardware is Apple-sexy, even if it's not quite as powerful as the best of the 'droids. Plus it gives me a warm and fuzzy feeling that people like me are royally pissing off Steve and his Cupertino buddies. I'm really looking forward to dual-booting it with Android, for my money that would be the best of both worlds.
All of the significant pieces of technology in my life either run arbitrary code execution by design, or have been hacked to do so. That includes almost all of the current generation of consoles. I'm no pirate, I just refuse to allow manufacturers to dictate what I can do with a piece of hardware that I've paid to own. Hell, even my router's running a CFW.
By now, if this isn't TLDR, you may be thinking I'm a Linux geek. I'm not, I just take full advantage of the amazing work that other people do in unlocking these devices. Usually it's extremely easy tear down the walled garden. Case in point - geohot's jailbreak for the Jesus phone. Two clicks, job done. Simples.
Sidenote - it amuses me greatly that almost everything in the upcoming iPhone OS 4.0 is already available through Cydia.... Folders, personalisation, multitasking, Bluetooth, fast app switching.... all done, and in every case, done better than what seems to be shipping in 4.0...
Steve Jobs has stated he wants to "keep the iPad porn free"
What on earth will people do with iPad now? I think it makes a rather nifty chopping board!
"Theres an app for that..." Utils.... chopping board... a snip at 99p or is that rather a chop at 99p?
As a confirmed Fanboi, it looks great and I was sorely tempted to splash out on one yesterday but I have 2 desktops macs, a macbook, an Iphone and multiple pods I thought.. Nice but I have no need for it.
That said, I do love the pad as it winds up the Wintards a treat and thats always good for a laugh.
My HTC HD2 does everything and more than the iPad, and I can stow it in the back pocket of my jeans. I can see a place for slate type device in the home; something you can leave around the house to conveniently check email, quickly check a web site, etc. However, Chrome or Windows powered slates are likely to be more of a winner, especially Windows if consumers end up preferring the familiarity.
"The ipad is, as many have said, a "companion device". It is there to use in conjunction with a PC, not to replace it."
But the few advantages it has over a PC are slight, and it loses many features. It's not like say, a Kindle which has the e-ink which a laptop doesn't (a Kindle is also very small and quite cheap).
Personally, I don't need a Kindle, but I know a couple of people with them and I get how they fit into their lives. I just don't see that with the iPad and I reckon in a few months we'll have a lot more pieces written like this.
I think the Ipad is just a fad to be seen with at the moment, people believe they need it. Apple are fantastic at design and marketing and that is why the Iphone, Ipad etc has done so well. When it comes down to it however, the question you should ask yourself is, do I really need this? Probably the answer will be no, as this writer has come to the same conclusion.
On the writing, the article is a bit over the top and probably needs to go through the editor a bit more throughly before going to press.
This comment made me sit up:
"but the lack of tabs in the iPad's Safari browser makes doing so a less-useful experience than it could be"
I'm quite surprised by this. Safari on iPad doesn't do tabbed browsing? What year is this again?
Also I went to Apple's iBook's page. What was the first comment I saw? This one:
"i thought i would buy my kids some of the hardy boy books for this, and i was sad to see that it costs more to get the digital version, then it is to buy the actual book. what is wrong with this picture? are they trying to push people to other means? how is it possible that its cheaper to buy the real book? are they crazy?? seriously."
Looks to me like it isn't only developers Apple is driving away.
I read Vanity Fair (and much more besides) on my Palm Treo in those dark days before Steve Jobs invented mobile reading. I still use my Treo every day. Can you load the iphone/ipad with free (eg. out of copyright) books or do you have to buy through the walled garden store?
I've used my netbook comfortably on my couch since those dark days before Steve Jobs invented mobile computers. Who would have thought that a flat panel which you can't make stand up on its own would be awful for use in bed, on the couch, in a chair and in many other places? Well, everyone who didn't think "it's Apple, I must have it" thought that, and they were right. £200, this netbook cost me, and I use it as much now as I did when I first bought it. And Hula welcomes me (or it would if I wasn't in the UK).
..however (not directed at the writer) but from the author's complaints, it seems they didn't really test it with beta-users thoroughly. Screen too reflective? Non-rounded corners? Slides off your knee?
Should've been obvious from a much earlier stage. I'm wondering if it was Apple's legendary obsession with secrecy that prevented more being released into trusted testers' hands.
After all, Nokia has a "TRUE-test" programme, for prototypes*. You can use it, but not show it. Couple of dozen folks using it for a week or so identify most of the bugs.
Requirement: The TRUE testers ain't allowed to be technical, just your average 'fartie' (IT, HR, Middle-managers, that sort of dross. Folks that'd junk-fill that leaking offshore well in USA. You get the drift... )
*(Phones, not basestations. The latter are a bit big to fit into a black binliner, even now. Altho' I used to carry one in a huge Samsonite suitcase several times a month between England and Finland 10 years ago . Always got security excited...)
"The iPad isn't for you, sorry fanbois, geeks and power users. The iPad is for those who do not have a computer yet, or have one but seldom use it because it is just "too hard"."
No, it isn't. Who has £500 to blow on a computer that doesn't work as a computer? Well-off people who already have a computer, that's who. I'd be amazed if more than 5% of iPad owners do not already have a PC, laptop or netbook in their household.
It's been obvious right from the start that the iPad doesn't really do anything very well, and I've been saying for years that the touch screen is a poor replacement for a keyboard and mouse interface. The iPad is not easier to use than a computer, because it's less practical to use than a computer - the type of people who find using a computer just "too hard" will find using a touch screen interface harder than the traditional interface. Who wants to have to bring up a virtual keyboard to enter text into a website when you could have the keyboard there all the time without obscuring the page? And a touch screen interface is inevitably going to be less precise and require more physical work than the wonderfully accurate and fluid cursor moving, clicking and scrolling technology already available (ie the mouse).
I got cheapest one available as soon as they got out, testing if I will fork out more money when V2 comes out. So far I am more than impressed. I am computer agnostic. I use PC and mac depending on what I want to achieve and I think iPad fits quite nicely between my iPhone and MacBook. It is not heavy, not at all. If it was (is) heavy for you, then you should spend less writing this sort of opinions and more in the gym. Honestly, I’ve been playing Firemint’s Real Racing mostly on my iPad (it is a racing game for iPhone) and I’ve been having a blast. What an experience! It is about two times heavier than iPhone, so if that is heavy, you should consider exercising more and healthier lifestyle altogether.
One of good things regarding iPad is that you can charge it without a PC/MAC Charger is iPhone interchangeable, and if you, like I have iPhone you have one of them for home, one for the office.
iPad does have same faults as iPhone. File system is wrong, it is limited in so many ways but still it is excellent value for money. What pissed me off the most is the design of the app store application. I want to flip through apps, like on iPhone I do not want to click next and previous buttons. Why did they opt for that approach is beyond me. I find myself trying to flip the page and it is not working! People say the keyboard is not that good, but if you wanted something to type long documents, iPad is not for you. It was not built for that. Now, if you are not ready to fork out $760 AUD for it, or you want more or different things for that money, go with netbook. iPad is not netbook and will never fight against them. It plays completely different sport, IMNSHO.
The iPad will sell because it is a great POS dumb terminal, like some chap said on here earlier, it will be good for factorys, shops, restuarents etc. But only as a point and click input pad. Give it a year or so and a bluetooth keyboard and I can see every middle management sort wanting one as a large PDA that they can work from while traveling.
Other than that, its a device looking for a purpose. And I dont have a purpose for it.
there are a few things for me, I think the iPad could be great and fun to use for:
1) Bible study, looking up greek or hebrew words during bible reading I would love to do but the Bible on the mobile phone is a little too slow and not so nice because of lack of screen property and starting the notebook just takes too much time so I better just keep on reading in the printed book. An iPad could propably be an alternative
2) Geocaching, almost similar situation here. The tool on the mobile phone is nice but a bigger screen (without the weight and proportions of my Notebook) would be great
3) looking up a phone number, business hours, a timetable, the weather forcast or watching anything from a website while travelling or doing the chores would be great.
I don't even know if the built in speakers would be good enough for this last application but anyhow. I won't buy an iPad soon.
But if you don't use yours anymore, I would be willing to give it a try. And I promise I send you a field report....
O, da Psion?
I liked my Series 3.
I also liked (for only slightly different reasons) my Jornada 720 (if you don't know it, think of it as a netbook precursor).
On the other hand my iPaq was rubbish, and looking at the iPad it's not just the spelling that's close to iPaq, the usefulness (zero, for me) seems to be close too.
No iPad soon for me then. Maybe an HTC with Android later in the year, once the prices come down a bit.
Can we have a dinosaur icon please? Till then, Bill, obviously (in an ironic kind of way given that it was him that wrecked the J720 concept).
Having tried a unit, I was very impressed by the touch screen controls. However, discussions with serious Kindle users indicate that the Ipad is too heavy to use and doesn't work under high ambient light conditions. One Ipad user also found that using it as a book reader gave her a headache, her Kindle doesn't. I cannot personally justify the price for a toy which is not as convenient as my $220 netbook running Ubuntu. I can't quite see the case for this device at this size, it's too big to go into a pocket and too power hungry to take anywhere without charging facilities. Seems to work quite well around the house. Time will tell.
I agree the ipad could be a bit lighter, but I've found it's fine as an e-reader - the contrast and brightness and font size are adjustable, after all. Where I find it's much better than a Kindle is that it has all the other functions (video, remote network access, mail, internet, maps, etc) in a thin, light, instant-on package.
I also have to agree with the previous poster who said it has a niche as a WC reader ...
Since when has a sheet of paper replicated itself to my PC without having to do a thing other than plug it in to it docking cradle? I'm no fan of apple and don't own any of the products however, I do use my phone to take meeting minutes which then get sync'd to my pc automaticaly. This makes turning these into more formal notes very easy and quick and in an email before a quick thing! Wouldn't it be a pain if the sheet of paper got screwed up, lost, burned, chucked in a bin .... etc etc etc
There are of course advantages to a piece of paper but your argument is basic, to say the least! At least try and be constructive.
However a sheet of paper is indeed usefull! You can role it up and throw it at somone who's fallen asleep in the meeting ;)
As I throw it at the MFD as I walk back into the office, push 2 buttons and its in my email.
So I need neither the device, its dock or the terrible terrible software that it requires to get my notes stored electronically. Unlike plain text on a nice shiny screen my handwriting is so bad no-one can tell what I'm writing anyway. I can then put my paper in the recycle bin and save the planet :D
Do I get a cookie now?
was unfortunately a deal breaker for me.
I'm by no means fond of it, but as a subscriber to Marvel's Digital Comics Unlimited service I need it.
Marvel as far as I know have no intention of creating an app for it as they'd much prefer it if you got the app that they have released and pay a couple of dollars per comic.
Everything stated in the article is just why I did not buy it.
Multitasking and flash and you got my money Mr Job's
Backstop is a working Ubuntu on the iPad....and I still give you my money for the device.
If only I was a better or even a slightly decent programmer I would happly give up some time to the Ubuntu dev world to help....
I don't understand the author. iPAD was made for WC. Not intended for a bathroom humor.
I do my casual reading in you know where, and serious reading when I am traveling. My casual reading is now replaced by iPAD. A stack of books, travel mags, are now gone, and replaced with iPAD. It is used for podcasts (wait-wait, car-talk, etc),, browsing, catching up on the market, news, some occasional shopping at amazon.com, etc.
I was so sure where iPAD belonged that it went straight to there after an obligatory ~3 days of being carried about. And it stayed there with a lot of use by all of the family members except when being charged. This had to said, and said anonymously.