iPad: The Good, The Bad, and the Meh - Macenstein

iPad: The Good, The Bad, and the Meh

OK, so I have given myself a whopping 7 hours to think about the iPad, and while conventional wisdom might say I need to wait 2 months and actually hold one to truly form my opinion of the device, my brain is so evolved, and my “Awesome detector” so refined, that I can render a final judgment at record speed. So sit back, and prepare to learn the Good, the Bad, and the Meh about the iPad.

The Good
• The Price is pretty good, at least for the non-3G versions. The entry level model starts at $499 for the 16GB WiFi only version. The only problem is that while 16 GB is more than enough room for a web-surfing eBook reader, it is really not even close to enough room for a music playing, iPhone game playing, video watching device. My iPhone currently contains 32 GB of memory, and I only have enough room to sync certain playlists of my 48,000 song library, 160 or so of my 600 apps, some photos and a couple videos. So if I were to get an iPad, I would think I’d want to get the 64 GB model which comes in at $699, which is beginning to make justifying the cost a little trickier.
• As far as an eBook reader goes, it looks very nice. I haven’t read a real book since my daughter was born 8 years ago, nor do I understand needing to carry 1000’s of books with you the way you might with songs, but if I had a long public transportation commute with 10 idle hours a week on my hands, maybe I would. The cost isn’t all that much more than a Kindle given all the extra bells and whistles you get with the iPad, so I could easily see the iPad dominating the eBook market, whatever that is.
• It can run almost any iPhone app/game natively. Granted only about 500 of the 140,000 apps out there are any good, and some of those use GPS and camera’s (which are lacking on the iPad) but in general this is pretty cool, and I would love to see how high a score I can get on Flight Control when my fat fingers have more room to navigate the game’s tight corners. This also means that I should be able to use the Remote app and walk around my house looking important as I change songs on my AirPort speakers.
• It should be Jailbreakable. We obviously don’t know for sure yet, but odds are the iPad is just as hackable as the iPhone, so hopefully an iPad Jailbreaking fix comes along soon that adds missing features like Flash and Netflix to the iPad.

The Meh:
• The iPad has video out, but you need a to buy a dock to do so. This means you need to carry the dock with you on trips if you plan to use it as a portable Apple TV.
• iBooks’s bookshelf interface is an exact rip off of delicious Library. I think I recall Delicious Library’s head muckety muck getting hired by Apple at some point though, so maybe that explains that.
• iWork: Well, honestly I don’t use these apps on my MacBook, so the odds that I would want to use them on a tablet are pretty slim. However I realize Apple felt the need to at least PRETEND that the iPad was more than an iPod touch and capable of some sort of “real” work. Yet while I suppose it is possible that someone might use Pages on the iPad, trust me, NO ONE will use keynote on this thing. If you think you will, it’s only because you are a keynote user who wants to buy the iPad and can’t think of a real reason to do so.
• I’m not loving the UI and interface of the native apps. People seem to be largely positive about the iPad UI, but I’m not really in love with it. First of all, the home screen looks ridiculous with those small app icons floating there so spread out. I REALLY hope you can tighten things up and have 40 icons on the home page if you want instead of spread out over three pages, but it didn’t look like it. And while the pop up menus seems nice, I am not thrilled with the “Santa Fe” Pages/Calendar color scheme and most of the UI bars and such. Mail was the only app that looked well put together to me. This might just need time to grow on me though.
• The dock can only mount to the iPad in portrait mode. This is perhaps the biggest physical design flaw Apple has made since the Squishy MacBook issue of the white and black MacBooks. The iPad appears as though it would make a very nice video viewer when in landscape mode, but by not also including a side-mounting dock connection, Apple has left creating a horizontal dock to 3rd parties who will have to make an odd “right” mounting dock connector.
• I’m not loving the bezel. Design-wise, I’m not loving the giant black border. People say it allows you to hold the iPad without covering content, but I say who cares? How much content is your thumb going to cover? This actually would matter much more on the smaller iPhone and iPod touch where there is really no border to speak of and a much smaller screen. If the border serves some other function, like giving the guts of the machine a place to go, that’s fine. But it looks more like a design decision to match the new iMacs, and MacBooks, and if so it doesn’t need to be there.

The Bad
• No Flash. This seems like an asinine move on Apple’s part, but one that could of course be fixed through a simple software update. It appears that Apple’s desire to make the iPad’s browser more or less identical to the iPhone’s instead of the MacBook’s will rank up there with the “no side mounted dock connector” as one of the biggest “What was Apple thinking” iPad moments. I would have thought that Apple realized people accepted the lack of flash on an iPhone do to the size of the screen and the power of the processor, but the iPad has neither of those limitations. The only explanation I can think of at this point for Apple’s dissing of Flash is that they are working on a Flash killer of their own in some secret lab.
• No ability to stream Netflix movies. This comes in a close second to the no-Flash thing. Now that even a Wii can stream Netflix movies, Netflix integration would have been a HUGE selling point and media buzz generating feature for the iPad, and I would have gotten an iPad solely for that feature alone. Luckily, like the no-Flash thing, this SHOULD be fixable if Apple gets off its ass and actually listens to criticism for once.
• AT&T is providing 3G service. I have AT&T, and it has proven 100% reliable where I live in NJ, but so many people have bitched about it that I can only assume that where there’s smoke there’s fire. I’m not sure why Apple would seek to create an iPad deal solely with AT&T, but obvioulsy this can change. On the plus side (at least for me) I would only be interested in the WiFi model anyway, so there’s no need to pay for 3G.
• No Camera. This is again, just plain silly. I would think Apple could have at least slapped a camera into the most expensive model to help distinguish it from the lower end models (and help justify the price differences, as there’s no way the increased memory alone is jacking the price up $200). I actually don’t think I would use the camera much, as I rarely ever do a video chat on my Mac, but Apple had about 5 years of internet rumors to learn that most people wanted a camera. The good news here is that assuming the iPad sells well enough to stick around for 7 months, Apple will likely add a camera to the next model.
• No multi-tasking. You may recall that I won an iPhone (with your help) by making a video BEGGING Apple to allow 3rd party internet radio apps to run in the background on the iPhone. Well, Apple has in effect released an iPhone with a MUCH more powerful processor and architecture that can surely let me lister to Slacker Radio while surfing the web, yet apparently the iPad is just as crippled as the iPhone. Too bad.
• It doesn’t stream video like the Apple TV does. At least I don’t think it does, and that sucks. I would care much less about the storage size if I could easily watch the hundreds of shows and movies stored on my Mac Pro wirelessly on the iPad. Hopefully Apple will fix this.
• It’s called the iPad. All tampon jokes aside (and there have been many) the name is lame. On the one hand, I haven’t heard any other name that is so much better I was rushing to embrace it, but at the end of the day, “Pad” means nothing in relation to what the device does. Sure, some 3rd party apps let you doodle on it, but it’s a websurfing, game-playing, eBook reader. I would have rather they bring back the name “iBook” for the device instead of their reader app. If anything, the iPad symbolizes the name “iPod” more than their other iPods. Even a “means-nothing” name like the “Newton” would have been nice. Let the thing stand on its own.

Final thoughts

So in conclusion, while most of us thought/expected/hoped the iPad would be an Apple tablet computer, it turns out it really is a giant iPod touch with an eBook application built in. The name alone should tell you it is only one letter away from an iPod. So, is it worth buying? Well, to someone like me, who’s house has 5 Macs, 2 iPod touches and 2 iPhones already, the desire to buy a big iPod is somewhat lacking. However, “somewhat lacking” does not mean I would not consider getting one.

I loved the iPhone because it combined two devices i already had (my phone and Mac) into one, and then threw in a PSP for free once the SDK was released. The iPad seems to combine an iPod touch and a Kindle, and I don’t personally own either. I haven’t read a book in 8 years, so its primary selling point is somewhat lost on me. However I find the idea of using the iPad as a portable video watching and game playing device to be attractive. I could almost see it as a “family” appliance more than a “Dr. Macenstein” appliance. I think my kids would like it, and the Bride of Macenstein might even enjoy reading books on it. The problem is, I don’t like spending $699 on my family. I’m all about me. I think that ultimately the fact that I have to wait 2 months to buy it even if I wanted it might help me resist the device.

So listen up Apple! You have two months to get Netflix up and running, or so help me… I will buy it anyway and bitch about it.

51 Responses to “iPad: The Good, The Bad, and the Meh”
  1. Karsten says:

    It’s a waste of money…sadly I did expect more from Apple…the lack of flash and camera are both intolerable.

  2. Toni says:

    Dear Macenstein,

    How would you hold the device if it did not have that bezel? How would you hold it without touching the screen and thus sending a constant touch “input”. It does not fit in your palm like iPhone/iPod Touch so you need to grab it from the bezel of the device. And having the bezel of same width all around the device means you don’t have to hold it in a certain way. Just my two cents…

  3. Mike says:

    Great comments and insights. I totally agree with your gripes, especially the lack of Flash, the lack of a camera (video chatting would have been a selling point) and the one dock connector.

  4. Way2Poppy says:

    While I agree with you about 98%, I can definitely see using Keynote on this thing to carry to presentations, sales meetings and other places where all you’re doing is presenting. It would be a lot better than lugging a laptop around in those situations.

  5. Z says:

    You miss Flash?
    Get rid of it.
    Try “Click to Flash” from http://www.rentzsch.github.com/clicktoflash/

    It’s a pleasure to surf the web without Flash. The vast majority of Flash deployment on the web is for ads anyway and that’s definitely something I can do without.

    Note- This very page, for instance, has Flash Ad from Amazon.com.

    Do I miss that experience? No.

    Looking forward to HTML5
    Hopefully the new standards will go a long way to limiting Flashes usage.

  6. Jeff says:

    The iPad’s inability to multitask is the deal breaker for me. I had hoped for a new more portable device to take along to school. I had hoped for hand writing recognition for taking notes, my textbooks, and a magazine all in a single device. without the ability to listen to music, work on a paper, and look up info on the net at the same time, the device is useless to me.

    I am also disappointed in the overall storage. Sure you can store your doc’s on Dropbox or Mobile me, sure I can’t watch 64GB of media all at the same time, but disappointed I am none the less. I don’t want to decide ahead of time what movies to sync. I want my movies there and ready to choose from depending on my mood.

    No flash… What can one say? Really??? If your going to tell me about what a great browsing experience it is, then give me a browser that isn’t crippled! You just killed half the content I am interested in. Sure HTML5 is just around the corner, but what about now???

    The screen size just seems wrong. I mean really, a major selling point is as a media device right? What video isn’t in a wide screen format these days? If this is a primary purpose for the device, along with iBooks and browsing, why would you not go with a wide screen format?

    Other missing features include a camera, SD slot, and a USB port or two. I mean really how hard would it have been to add these features into the design. If the idea is to bridge the gap between smart phone and laptop/desktop, these are pretty standard features.

    I am an Apple fan boy. I drank the Kool-Aid, and I love my Mac. We are on our 2nd MacBook Pro, and I take it everywhere. I have no intention of purchasing another PC for our home, iMacs and MacBooks will grace our desks from here on out. All that said, I am very disappointed in Apples latest creation. I think they completely failed to provide fundamental functionality and hardware to make this device a viable option in it’s target market. I am not sure how to characteristic these utter failures. If the lack of features and functionality is an intentional plan for an upgrade path to entice new sales each year, or if the research and design department dropped the ball… Eiteher way, unless something significant changes, I do not see myself being an early adopter of this new device.


  7. Xero says:

    Yeaaaaa…think i’ll wait till the next gen on this, if there is one (knock on MacBook)

  8. I almost thought this device was silly. Until Steve announced that incredibly low price point I’m almost sold. This the perfect device for my kitchen – hook it up to the sound system, read books and newspapers, has ALL my apps I already own on it.

    Improvements are necessary – like with all first gen things but overall it’s pretty damn sweet!

  9. Kirk says:

    I disagree with you quite a bit, but the real fault in your arguments is that you haven’t read a book in 8 years — and you actually appear proud of that. Reading is enjoyable, educational, and most of all essential. Essential to develop critical thinking, essential to be well rounded, essential to raise successful, happy, children; essential.

    You should be ashamed.

  10. Gr@w|!x says:

    I’m tipping you all are the same guys who bitched about the iPhone’s non-removable battery, lack of cut-and-paste, virtual keyboard, lack of video support and so on. I also bet you’ve each had three iPhones anyway.

    Nobody is interested in what you say, what car you drive, or how hot your new avatar makes you look. They are only interested in their own needs. Time will tell how many of them “need” an iPad. My tip is plenty, but let’s wait for the sales figures to come out.


  11. David X Messer says:

    I’m with Gruber on the flash thing.


    I’d love to see some stats about flash usage since the iPhone launch and what effect (if any) that’s had on adoption since then. It’s just not a deal breaker for me.

    As for NetFlix that doesn’t seem to be an issue with Apple.


  12. Bubbleman says:

    I think a $300 netbook can run flash and multitask. Turns out netbooks are better than something after all!

  13. Paul says:

    Totally passing on this little slice of awesome from Stevie… Just not enough there to even remotely impress me at all.

  14. Gary says:

    Flash…. I don’t see the big deal here, flash is on it’s way out. 90% of crashes or freezes in browsers are caused by ADOBE FLASH. Hopefully HTML5 will be in full swing soon.

    Camera, a big disappontment to me. But the released SDK refers to taking pictures and cameras… maybe there is hope for a camera yet.

    multitasking would be nice and I don’t understand why this is not avaible for third party apps. If it’s an Apple app you can multitask.

    AT&T has been a reliable service for me in Memphis. The data prices for the iPad are very generous. I personally will go with the 250mb for 15 bucks/mo.

    iWorks is a great program on my Mac computers and is a redesign for the iPad (something folks forget) along with all the other Apple apps. From what I’ve read Safari is very fast loading pages and the ui for the iPad is a natural for reading books mags and surfing the net.

    VoIP is now a go for 3G and this is a free download on the itunes store. So the iPad should have phone capability.

    Over all, wish there was a camera for iChat, but the iPad is a no brainer for my armchair or morning coffee. Goodbye newspaper subscription.

  15. Lo says:

    you nailed it!

  16. Min says:

    well, like ipod and iphone. I believe the iPad will be a great device eventually. I already see a huge market potential amount college students. I remember the days I have to carrie so many books. Now, with iPad, student will just have one device and have all the books in it. Take it to wherever they want. Not to mention all the fun with web browsing, music, apps, photos, videos, games, etc. Just my two cents.

  17. DJ says:

    I, too, agree with Gruber about Flash. I have “Click to Flash” on all my Macs, and I almost never “click to Flash”. HTML 5 and H.264 are the way to go for web video.

    I also don’t think the size (aspect ratio) of the screen is “wrong” for video playback. Sure, it would be nice to fill the screen for playing back an HD/widescreen video, but think about it: The screen is less than 2 feet from your face, so how big does the video need to be?

  18. Min says:

    And, did I mention that, it makes a pretty NICE digital photo frame when you are not using it for anything else. For a price start at $499, I say it’s a great product even it’s the first gen.

  19. Joe says:

    If the iPad had magazines and actual newspapers (not their websites) as well as books, I would be instantly sold. As a student, carrying around all my textbooks on one 2 lb device is very attractive! Plus, if the textbooks are even half the price as an ibook, the device would pay for itself.

  20. Rob says:

    Nice review and great “Awesome detector” skills….really can’t add anything more than what’s been said in your review or what others have said. I will add that I’m just as disappointed as everyone else. I hope Apple doesn’t kill this like they did the Newton, and I’m hoping this isn’t a downward spiral trend for Apple.

  21. nexfraxinus says:

    I’ll get one. Bezel doesn’t look perfect but oh well .. otherwise you’d really have a lot of trouble cuz the device notices the “touch” from holding as well -.-

  22. Dave-O says:

    You don’t need a dock for video out, you need the A/V cable Apple has been selling for years.

    The absence of Flash should be under “The Good.”

  23. Amit says:

    I was also disappointed with this release. Even though I felt many more features could have added, the difference between me buying and not buying it was a built-in webcam. If they had simply done that, I would have bought 2 of the best models plus accessories, and spent over $2000 for the pair. I had my credit card in my hand ready to pre-order in case it was available yesterday. Very disappointed, Apple.. and all my friends and family know me as the biggest Apple supporter. Until today, I had bought the iPhone on launch day for 3 straight years, 2 Unibody MBP’s on launch day, 2 iPod touch on launch day, and 1 27″ iMac on its launch day. Not this time though. All I was asking for was a built-in web camera and I could have absorbed the lack of other features. Oh well..

  24. Daniel says:

    I think it’s really cool that you can read books and eventually cool multimedia magazines and stuff on it, but right now it’s not that impressive. There needs to be an optional stylus and handwriting recognition, system wide. I want Pages, Notes, and all of my books and magazines and newspapers to be compatible with it. I want to be able to treat the “iBooks” that I own like real books I could own and write on the margins if I need to (especially textbooks). It’s not a library book, it’s mine, and I want it to be more like a real book as much as possible, so let me take some notes in the margins. I’d also love it if I could have students email me papers, open them in Pages, and then mark them up in red e-ink, convert them to PDFs marked up and graded, and send them back, all from my iPad. The ability to write and take notes on your ebooks is something no one else offers, and that would really set the iPad apart for me.

  25. Dave-O says:

    Your comments on the bezel betray a fundamental lack of understanding of physics and physiology. Please, try to hold something 10 inches wide without putting your thumb over what would be a TOUCH-SENSITIVE area in your hypothetical design. Now put your thumb on your iPhone display and try and navigate around web pages, zoom in/out, scroll, etc. Doesn’t work.

  26. Shunnabunich says:

    Error found: you accidentally put “no Flash” in the “Bad” category instead of “Good”.

    I don’t care how many websites use Flash for video right this second. Flash needs to die, and the ONLY way that’s going to happen is if someone, somewhere, stops supporting it and inspires others to follow suit. If Apple were to cave in and support Flash on iPhone OS devices, we’d be back to square one where web developers feel content to cripple performance for the sake of some stupid little animation effect on their navigation bar that could just as easily be achieved with a jQuery plugin, or some video content that they use the world’s most bloated VECTOR ANIMATION plugin for instead of, y’know, plain old video files. It might hurt some sites in the short term, and sure, I’ll miss Homestar Runner, but the web needs to move on to real standards that no one company has a chokehold on. Adobe’s sure as hell demonstrated that they can’t handle it responsibly.

  27. Hans says:

    First … Flash won’t happen … ever … on a mobile Apple device. Didn’t expect it so no love loss there.

    The real “revolution” is waiting in the wings. The iPad (yeah, not thrilled with the name either) just had to be announced and out the door to get the ball rolling. Its as if all the cool stuff can now start. Content providers can, finally, create to more than a rumored concept. Those magazine concepts (like the brilliant SI version) can move forward. Newspapers can start working on a whole new (and I guarantee PAID) daily version of their content. The content that will make this device sing has been chomping at the bit to have a platform other than a desktop/laptop/phone to get it once again into the couch/laps/hands of the end user … the iPad is the first of its kind and now the publishers have to come through.

    Envision Apple media events when all of the cool content that publishers got to work on today will be unleashed … its happened over and over again for the iPod/iTunes line and I’m sure it is on the roadmap for the iPad.

    Yesterday’s introduction was just the first step in the journey to a device-opening category. And once again Apple is leaps and bounds ahead of the rest. No camera? It will come. Landscape docking? It will come or a third party will create an ingenious accessory. Don’t like the interface? Customization will come. Remember the first iPhone? No apps, no customization. Now look at what can be done!

    In a sense, Apple is a victim of their own success … that is, if yesterday’s event seemed underwhelming. Everyone who has owned an iPhone or played with an iTouch KNOWS this device already … has had on more than one occasion wished their screen was bigger and what they could do with that. I could probably pick it up and demo it. For a new category to have that familiar feel, that’s GENIUS! From a marketing point of view I’d much rather have a product that everyone could understand and then grow from there than have one that was so foreign it could never get off the ground. Apple simply created the base version of the product we all knew and wanted. The sky’s the limit now … now that it is a REALITY.

    The iPad is version 1.0 of a whole new world. And knowing Apple we’ve only seen the necessary tip of the iceberg.

    Final thought … Jobs started the keynote talking about how profitable Apple is … and that is withOUT this line of product. They have a longterm approach to this device, and they don’t need it to be huge out of the gate, at least financially. Like a wave building out in the ocean, they have simply laid the groundwork for a tidal change in the way we consume content.

    – H

  28. davewhipped goliath says:

    wow don’t like spending money on the family hope the bride misses this article

  29. Andy says:

    Something to consider:

    Your Mom is a Windows Vista user!

    (just kidding – really)

    The lack of an iPad camera is good because you can’t bring camera devices in many “secure” environments, like at military contractor’s site. If you have one you have to leave it in your car. There are lot’s of security issues with camera devices. Locations from locker rooms to clean rooms prohibit entry with camera equipped devices. I wasn’t allowed to bring my camera cell phone (iPhone – of course) into the local county jail (I was working there for the day – OK?)

    The iPad is more business friendly without the camera, and can be used where no person’s camera has gone before. Like it or not – that is just the way it is.

  30. Jon says:

    According to Valleywag / Gawker, the original base price of the iPad was $399…


  31. Anastas says:

    The iPad joke from 4 years ago:

  32. dood says:

    I would guess that the weird screen aspect ratio was chosen so that it can pixel double iphone apps.

  33. Richard says:

    I am buying it.

    Besides the “camera”, everything else is fixable via software, either by jailbreak or OS 4 … (oh yes … this will be jailbreakable for sure). My iPhone supports multitasking, Tethering (with Wifi … like a router), and a lot of other stuff … so will the iPad.

    I think the prices are right. This thing can not be cheaper than an iPod Touch (don’t you think??) … and the base price is only $100 more than the top iPod Touch.

    As far as “Flash” … I don’t want it. Flash is the #1 reason my Safari used to crash (in Leopard). I think Adobe had a pretty long ride with this technology and it is about time we start using an Open Source solution for video on the web.

    Now, I have to admit, I still have a Newton in my possession … and I bought into the first iPod … so perhaps I do not represent the common consumer.

  34. LexaGrey says:

    It will be a super fast huge portable gaming device – kids and casual game lovers love it.

    Web and email reader with cheap internet access – the non-computer who hate error messages and spyware will love it.

    A Large car mounted GPS, multi-touch trek like home interfaces, spinning full color recipe card holder, An always open home page app giving time news, weather, social alerts – People who love beautiful intuitive interfaces to useful applications will love it.

    Easy access to whatever media you care to consume – Content creators and People with credit cards will love it.

    It makes geeks cry whiney tears because it is not an Open OS underpowered netbook – The majority of the non-blogsphere will love it.

    People who want tablets should buy tablets. People who want netbooks should buy netbooks. This is a new class of device that the blog-sphere seems hell bent trying to rip dvd’s with.

  35. Zendriver says:

    Here’s my problem with the people trumpeting “No Flash, who cares? HTML 5 FOREVER YAY!” I agree that HTML5 is the better way forward and that Flash is a security-flaw-riddled dinosaur. But HTML5 isn’t standardized yet. It is used for less than 25% of the video content out there. It isn’t used at all by Netflix. Until it grabs a bigger piece of the internet media pie, Flash is unfortunately what we are saddled with. And unless HTML5 overtakes Flash in the next 60 days/90 days, it’s inexcusable for the iPad to be hobbled by this inability.

    And anyway, who says you can’t support Flash now and HTML5 later when it finally kills Flash? A software update or install could handle that – it’s how they’ll handle it with Safari for their regular computers, after all. As for “Flash being mostly used for ads” – what, you don’t think HTML5 will be leveraged in the same way once it becomes king?

    But let’s not kid ourselves; the iPad isn’t meant to be a forward thinking device, or really a game changer. Not because it doesn’t include Flash, but because it doesn’t include so many other things that Apple knows consumers want. And that’s precisely their strategy – like the iPhone 1.0, the iPad is meant as an appetizer. It is meant to leave us craving more, a meal they no doubt intend to deliver with the iPad 2.0.

    And hopefully, by the second generation, they’ll change the name to “The Apple Slate”. I mean, isn’t the i(InsertProduct) naming convention getting a little played out anyway?

  36. Piotr says:

    I do agree almost 100%. What hurts me most is that this device has the potential to be everything I ever desired a tablet to be (and I would like to have one) but fails to deliver almost any of the features. I’d like to seat down on my sofa and browse the web – it’s more comfortable than a laptop (where you need to use a touchpad I always hated), but it lacks flash. While most of the content is commercials you still sometimes do lack important part of a web-page. I’d like to, still on my sofa, call a friend on Skype, or iChat but there’s no front-facing camera to make it more enjoyable. As opposed to the author of the article I own tons and tons of books. They’re mostly in pdfs. Add to that around 10GB of journal articles (I’m a scientist) I’d like to have with me as references when I’m on the go, at the conference etc. (because I never know what I’m going to need). So that creates three problems. First, even 64GB is laughable (I mean there’s also music I’d like to have with me). Second, I assume, that as with iPod Touch or iPhone moving this amount of documents will be either very tricky or even impossible. I mean – how hard can it be? Isn’t it Apple who invented drag & drop? Why can’t I just mount the device, drag and drop the content and go. And third – reading on this glossy, bright screen covered with super-reflective glass is less than stellar experience. I could live with the screen, it’s when on the go, not for casual reading, but still other two issues I just can’t get behind remain. Kindle would be great but the designers have switched heads with donkeys – if I can’t zoom my pdf it’s not a “native pdf support”! And there’s too little disk space either. But Kindle is another story entirely. And movies. Well, last time I’ve checked 58% of the Apple income was generated outside US yet everything they make is targeted at US market first. So for all of us who don’t have movies in iTunes store it means using iPod app on the iPad for watching movies (as it’s not a full Mac OS device you can’t just instal VLC and even if you could there’s again a problem in transferring the movie file to the device) and that means converting all the DVDs or divx files into .mov or .mpeg4. It takes ages, lowers the quality and iTunes won’t support subtitles in .txt format. It’s royal pain in the ass, I’ve tried that once on my iPhone and decided it’s not worth the effort. So again – where it could show it’s strength and superiority over iPod Touch or iPhone (due to larger screen, actually usable to watch movies on the go or read pdfs) it fails miserably. It’s not really a device for professionals, adding iWork is nice but no one will actually use it. I mean maybe if I am to make a presentation I’d do it from the iPad and being able to modify the file on the plane if I decide I need to is nice to have, but the core fie itself will be prepared on the desktop. So I don’t really miss multitasking that much. Sure if I need to copy from Pages and paste into Keynote having to quit-start-quit-start applications is annoying but as I said it’s not a productive device as such so this instances will be sparse. I agree that the hardware is stunning but Jobs on numerous occasions mentioned that Apple is a software company. You’d think it would be thought through at least from software/productivity point of view. Well, for me they almost got the hardware right but the software part is lacking the most. Too bad because I’d love to have one.

  37. Brother Mugga says:

    Surely the bezel is so you can hold it . . . without confusing the sensors? Is it just me, or is that not really, really obvious. Given that it’s a ‘touch’ device.

    I won’t get one till it has a camera for iChat, but I suspect the reason for its absence is that videoconferencing would crash the 3G networks, thereby sullying the iPad experience (given that users will probably – albeit inappropriately – attribute drop-outs, failures to connect, and block-o-vision to limitations of the device, rather than the carrier). Expect to see on in rev2 or 3 when the networks can cope. It’s not cost, it’s the bandwidth.

  38. sbradfo says:

    it’s perfect !!!
    … for what the consumer has asked for
    1. check my email
    2. surf the web
    3. play my music
    4. look at photos

    who cares … if you can’t burn the latest MKV files that you pulled down from PirateBay while editing the final chapters of ‘Greatest Story’ ever written.

    who cares … what it has or has not
    no USB
    no camera
    no DVD drive
    no … this … or that !!
    only the techno weenies point out shortcomings of any product

    who cares …
    but for the 95% of the general public, it’s perfect !!

    don’t believe me … go to any Best Buy and listen to what they tell the sales rep every weekend …
    ‘only purpose for this computer for home is to check my email, maybe a little surfing, some music and to look at pictures’

  39. Rob Jackson says:

    What about Printing in Pages? How would you install printer drivers? If you’re going to write War & Peace, you might want a hard copy. Unless you send it to all the other iPads for them to read. But I may need a physical copy.

    Yeah. I’ll buy one or two..

  40. Ethan Sisson says:

    Seems no one has noticed this, but 3G models do have GPS. Check the tech specs page. Hopefully its not a mistake.

    It only makes sense, as the 3G chips probably just happens to have GPS thrown onto it (as most do from what I understand), so no reason Apple wouldn’t utilize it.

  41. Andrew Manteuffel says:

    You don’t have to use AT & T for 3G, the plans mentioned ($15 for 250 gig and $30 unlimited) are just what you can get with AT & T. These are UNLOCKED. They’ll work on any cell provider that can give you data plans.

  42. Bad News Flash Lovers: Flash does nothing to improve the browsing experience. It will never be on an iDevice. You’ll have to browse HTML5 based porn videos and stop playing those retarded “games”

    The Bad News Robot.

  43. Galley says:

    The iPad supports both the Apple Composite and Component video cables.

  44. Infinitimoon says:

    The 3G model does include Assisted GPS as indicated on the specs page under “location” on the Apple iPad website.


    Makes sense. Assisted GPS requires cell phone tower info, and only the 3G-capable models would have that. Also includes a compass.

    I suspect the Navigon and TomTom apps will work OK.

  45. darrell says:

    i’m still wondering what’s going on with multi-tasking. it’s probably the most requested feature for the iPhone so if it makes it into 4.0 i wouldn’t be surprised to see it initially in the iPad.

  46. ObamaPacman says:

    Video out doesn’t require the dock. Only a small dongle. Photo here:

    Keynote is amazing for presentations. Nintendo CEO uses Apple Keynote software for presentations. (that’s on my site too).

  47. Gil says:

    Odd how every blog on the web are panning this product with the same gripes about no camera, no flash, no multitasking, no removable storage, etc.,.. Apparently the people who miss those things can still buy a proper laptop or a netbook.

    I think that most tech bloggers, or the critics as they should be called (because really is this technology reporting?) don’t really understand that they only represent but a tiny fraction of the market Apple is targeting.

    This product is more about transforming the Mac as opposed to evolving an iPhone. This product will attempt to shield a whole new crop of users from the complexities of general computing. Computers not complex to you? Well then your not the target market.

    Did Apple leave out a bunch of stuff? No. They simply by-passed all the things that would present unnecessary complexities for their target market: EVERYONE besides the tech geeks.

  48. ron says:

    ok first of all i hate that it is only on at&t that ther is no flash no camera and no multitasking! or a port to put you usb and put videos or pictures on it

  49. DaveB says:

    For all you waiting for gen 2 of iPad — why are you thinking Apple is screwing over its customer base by announcing a tinkertoy iPad and holding the “real_one_with_all_the_goodies” for gen 2?

    This is like thinking the Coke 2/Classic was a thought-out strategy. No way.

  50. marki says:

    I agree with most points brought up about the good, bad, and meh… I would like to disagree with all of you that say flash isnt important. While HTML5 is more stable, What is more popular!?!?!? HTML5 may be great and all, but flash is still the king. Whether it be dying or not, there is a need for it, i want to watch hulu and other video sites on this iPad, i shouldnt have to rely on someone like saurik to jailbreak a device that should be customizable. If paying money, I want to do what I want to do with it. End of story.

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