Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A magical and revolutionary product...

It's been a couple of hours since it was announced, and I'm still trying to figure out what I think of the new Apple iPad. I guess I was so into the hype, I expected it to be everything I had imagined, and it didn't quite get there.

About 30 minutes into the presentation, I had a distinct feeling of "is that all there is?!" It just seemed like an iPhone, but bigger. Now an iPhone that's bigger is pretty cool; watching video becomes much better, the keyboard is easier to use. No doubt it would be nice to have; even if I wouldn't have it with me all the time.
But still. Is that all it is?And even now, I feel a bit that way, though maybe my expectations are starting to dial back a little, and probably by the time it actually ships - in 60 days - I'll have a more nuanced view.

I was talking to a friend right after it was announced, and we were comparing notes and he - like me - had been very excited beforehand, and almost assumed he'd buy one. But he was muted in his response as well. We both agreed that we'd wait until they had them in the store and we could go down and try them out. Not ten minutes later - after watching the movie Apple put up on the site - he came over excitedly; "Okay, that's it, I'm getting one!" He said he loved the responsiveness that seemed evident in the video, as well as the interface enhancements they'd done.

I have to say, I'm impressed by some of it; the price, the size of the screen, the price, and the iWork suite. Oh, and the price.

It's a lot cheaper than I had thought it would be. Though add in memory and 3G, and the price starts to tick up.

I was disappointed by the book distribution model they showed. I really thought that Apple would nail content authoring/distribution/viewing, and I'm not sure they have yet. I thought they would integration books, magazines and newspapers, but The New York Times is developing their own app for viewing the paper, and the iBook reader seems to be limited to, well, books. There didn't seem to be any note taking capability - in the book reader - but maybe it's rudimentary and they just didn't show it.

I thought there might be a camera, and though I'm not bitterly disappointed that there isn't I thought there'd be something for video web chats. It just seems a natural. Maybe in version 2.0?

I see that Apple is promising a "camera connection kit" that will allow you to plug a camera in over USB or use an SD card. I'll wait to see what that's about.

I/m also waiting to see:
  • the functionality of the iBook reader
  • is there a Mac and PC version of the iBook reader
  • Legibility of the screen in daylight
  • How easy it is to type on just occurred to me that they are recycling their product names: they used to have a very different iBook product..

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