A few thoughts on the iPad

It’s been just under a week since I began getting really excited about the iPad. The idea of having a mobile, flatscreen web browser, media player and word processor was almost too much to bear. That excitement is wearing off.

Will I get an iPad? Maybe. But if I don’t, here’s why: By some accounts the iPad is difficult to type with, especially if you try to write more than a few sentences. This is frustrating for bloggers, students, and people who deal with lots of text for a living.  Sure, you can hook the device up to an external keyboard, but at the cost of compromising the iPad’s purpose — to fill the space between phone and laptop.

I want a device similar to the iPad that’s more than a media viewer. I want a media creator; one that has a front-facing camera and USB ports to attach external devices. I don’t want to deal with unstable wi-fi, and I want the ability to install OSX-compatible software of my choice.

I haven’t ruled anything out, but for now, I’m not completely sold.

4 Replies to “A few thoughts on the iPad”

  1. Have you actually played with one? The typing isn't that bad. The lack of tactile or haptic feedback definitely takes some getting used to, but I found myself making a lot fewer mistakes than I expected.

    I stand firmly by the belief that the iPad is not about mobile production, but rather mobile consumption. Media, games, music, web – that's what it does best. I think it was actually a mistake on Apple's part putting an office suite on it at launch. It gets away from what the device truly is – the best media consumption portal ever made.

  2. You bring up good points, Stephen, but for me 'web computing' means so much more than passive consumption.

    For example, I'm typing this from inside a Web browser (production) and I also wrote this blog post in Gmail from inside the browser. I can't help but to feel that without having a lot of flexibility to type, my web experience will be compromised.

  3. Have you actually played with one? The typing isn't that bad. The lack of tactile or haptic feedback definitely takes some getting used to, but I found myself making a lot fewer mistakes than I expected.

    I stand firmly by the belief that the iPad is not about mobile production, but rather mobile consumption. Media, games, music, web – that's what it does best. I think it was actually a mistake on Apple's part putting an office suite on it at launch. It gets away from what the device truly is – the best media consumption portal ever made.

  4. You bring up good points, Stephen, but for me 'web computing' means so much more than passive consumption.

    For example, I'm typing this from inside a Web browser (production) and I also wrote this blog post in Gmail from inside the browser. I can't help but to feel that without having a lot of flexibility to type, my web experience will be compromised.

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