The Apple iPad

Well, the iSlate name rumor sounded really strange. iTablet? Oh well. iPad indeed makes a little more sense.

However, honestly, the “iPad” is not really what I’ve been waiting for. Having one device for a job is so from the 90th - where several manufactures wanted to sell a device per job: one for calculation, one for phoning, one for your music, etc. pp. Obviously that did not turn out to be accepted too well. The iPhone was such as success because it combine so many required things in one device: phone, email, photo, web, music.

I certainly do not want to rain on Apples parade, but why the heck should I get myself such a limited devices between my iPhone Palm Pré, my laptop and my workstation (if I need a workstation these days at all).

Basically the iPad boils down to just being a super-sized iPod touch, mainly for Apple to also get into the book reselling expand the lucrative content licensing market.

All the cons of the iPad:

  • no 3G phone calls?
  • no camera?
  • super huge screen bezel (for the thumbs, I got it, but I’d rather have more screen or a smaller device and wipe the thumb print from time to time than such a huge, space and screen estate wasting bezel!!!)
  • no regular computer apps, think Photoshop, Xcode, real iWorks, etc.
  • no real monitor out (hey, I would want to use it as full computer replacement at home, …)
  • no multiple apps on screen? no background apps?
  • all the other things missing from a real OS (such as Mac OS X), such as printing etc.
  • no file management (think Finder), heck even the Palm Pré got it out of the box!!!
  • heavier than Amazon Kindle’s, less comfortable for reading books
  • backlit display, certainly less healthy for your eyes (compared to paper-ink and e-ink) when reading longer, e.g. iBooks

The most bugging point is: no real apps, such as Photoshop, Xcode et al. If I’d had such a Pad, I’d certainly write some code for an App in the train, the sofa, on the weekend trip mountain. Or Photoshop Grandma’s picture while visiting here (yeah, there are those super limited iPhone crap Apps, but you’d really think you can make a reasonably edit with them?).

And what gives it when you managed to edit something with one of those crippled-mini-Photoshop wannabes and can not even print it, have to first find a real PC, Mac and email it to print it out?

I bed most of the limitation are even well thought out, artificially: To neither harm iPhone nor regular Mac hardware sales. The least Apple can stand is negative press coverage due to decreasing iPhone or Mac sales (and be it just due to a successful iPad).

Personally, I’m also not that sure if the book, content reading experience will be all that pleasant with fingerprints all of the screen from multi-touching it all the time.

But the biggest deal breaker, most people these days tend to overlook, is this: You only get an program on the thing when it passes Apple’s censorship, and taking some 33% of the revenue from you. To put this into perspective, how would this feel: If you could only get programs Apps onto your Mac via iTunes. Purchased via Apple. Apple getting some 33% via revenue share of every Mac program sold, and ever used. Would this be a brave new world?

Now think once more: What if Microsoft would do the same? Only allow installing Windows Apps via the MSN, MicroSoft Network? Can you hear the up-cry of all users, companies and media world wide?

While others say: We are not evil.

That’s life on Apple latest platforms: Welcome to the iPhone and iPad OS.

Update: I also wonder how well one can type with the ten finger system on the soft-keyboard. With the few, e.g. two, fingers on the iPhone it certainly works out quite nicely, but with 10 on the bigger Pad? Without any mechanical orientation, I guess it’s only good for Aunt Tilly’s two finger eagle search.

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