I recently got my hands on an iPad. I’ll be the first to admit I thought the iPad was kind of stupid. After all it’s just a big iPod Touch or a big iPhone without the phone. Then I played with one and got to thinking this isn’t so bad.
Well after a couple days of living with it, it’s pretty darn useful. It’s sleek, lightweight, good battery life, and fairly usable. eMail is good if you like email the Apple way.
For a 1.0 product it aint too shabby.
I highly suspect some useful improvements in the coming releases.
* Multi-tasking is a must have for this. While most apps are good at letting you pick up where you left off, when you need to bounce around to collect some info for an email, it’s kind of tough.
* The keyboard is surprisingly useful, although it’s not real well thought out. You don’t need to type much to figure out some symbols are hard to get too.
* Editing a wiki with html like source is darn near impossible for example. Yeah, I can use an Apple BT keyboard, but I need more control with that keyboard. Maybe an apple keyboard driver to make the function buttons do stuff will help.
As for a multi-media device, this thing is pretty sick. Great at browsing the web, and playing tunes, movies and TV.
In that regard the iPad is about 100x more useful than a netbook.
It’s strengths are simply:
* a Good web browsing experience, even if it is Safari-Lite
* email, the email integration is good and when iPhone OS 4.0 features come to this and you get a unified inbox, I’m sure it will get better.
* Lots of apps and games, some good ones are even free.
* of course it’s an iPod so it’s got your music.
* TV and Movies.
The biggest gotcha with using this is that you feel like you’re at an amusement park. Meaning every time you turn around there is something that’s going to cost you money. Very little added value is FREE.
Good apps cost money. Out of the box I had to drop $30 on pages/numbers/keynote. Another $20 on a good pdf viewer and a utility to be able to copy files over the airwaves.
This thing is good at video, but where do you get video? iTunes of course. Which means $$$.
You can use the ABC app to watch ABC video online, but that assumes you have a connection, you may not, and you’ll be forced to watch commercials.
I frequently grab TV shows I miss, in torrent form and put them on my media server at home to watch. I’d like to do the same here. But as we know that’s not easy or fast. First you have to download them and none are in apple format. So then you have to ‘rip’ them. That takes time and resources. Then copy them again into iTunes.
Here’s where things bother me.
I pay roughly $100 a month for digital cable, with DVR. I can watch and record what I want when I want it (and pretty much skip commercials).
That works out to $3.33 per day.
Or in iTunes pricing la-la land, at $1.99 a show (plus tax) = $2.13 per episode, that allows me to buy 47 episodes or 11 shows per week. (If I want to do without cable).
That might seem like a reasonable value, but when I consider that I can’t really get everything on iTunes. (Most sports aren’t there and they certainly aren’t live), that narrows the selections of what I can use this for. Basically just TV shows and select movies.
Let’s just say there are (3) shows I don’t want to miss.
Those 3 shows together add up to: $139.97 plus tax. That’s entirely too much.
Realistically, I’d plunk down:
$10 for a season of each or $30 total to be able to watch them in Hi-Def any time I wanted without a connection needed (meaning I’ve downloaded it locally) and without commercials. That’s more realistic to me.
So in the interim, until pricing gets reasonable, I guess I’ll have to do the download, and rip solution. In which case they get $0…
The same thing goes for movies.
$19.99 plus tax is entirely too much for a digital copy.
$5.00 is acceptable, just saying.