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15 reasons why the iPad is no game-changer

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(happygeek)
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OK, so Apple has done it again. Whipped the technology and consumer media up into a feeding frenzy that is. But has it delivered with the truly magical and revolutionary product that was promised? Er, no dude, not by a long shot and here (in no particular order) are 15 reasons why the iPad is not a game-changer.

  1. According to Steve Jobs the netbook concept has been a fail and the iPad does everything better. Apart, that is, from doing more than one thing at once. Users obviously won't want to have a Twitter app running on that large screen while they surf the web or check their email.
  2. Still no Adobe Flash support, which makes the iPad about as much use as a chocolate teapot when it comes to web browsing.
  3. Despite the notion of an Apple iBookstore, the iPad is not a Kindle Killer for one very good reason: no e-ink. Yes, there's no doubting that Apple will position itself up towards the top of the eBook tree, but will consumers be happy to pay more for an iPad than a Kindle only to get a less pleasing reading experience?
  4. The name is all wrong. It's too close to iPod, and it sounds too much like a sanitary protection product. Ask any woman what they think of the name iPad and they will either go bright red or start laughing. The name iPad is just wrong, period.
  5. The name is all wrong (2). It seems that Apple, the same company that has been so protective and litigious over trademarks, might have forgotten that Fujitsu already has an iPad in the marketplace (it's used by shop workers) and an outstanding trademark application for that matter. iWhoops!
  6. You don't actually want to write on this thing do you? Everyone I have spoken to who got hands on at the launch event agrees that you really wouldn't want to type for any great length of time, or try to work on a lengthy document, using the virtual on-screen keyboard. Sounds pretty much the same as any other virtual keyboard I've ever tried, and failed, to use on TabletPC models to date. But at least they came with an alternative in handwriting recognition which, rather surprisingly, actually worked quite well on this kind of form factor.
  7. You don't actually want to write on this thing do you (part 2)? Aha, the fanboys respond, there's an optional keyboard dock for that. Riiiiiiiiiiiiiight. It could probably do with an optional hard lid to protect the screen as well, except then you are left with a break-apart netbook and Apple thinks netbooks suck doesn't it?
  8. Where's the market again? Well, Apple will insist it sits in that huge gap between those for whom a smartphone is too small and a laptop is too big. Oh bugger, we're back to the netbook space aren't we, and that's pretty well populated already by devices with lids and proper keyboards. Jobs is wrong about netbooks by the way, people buy them because they are small and cheap and fully functional. The iPad fails on all those counts.
  9. No killer app. Seriously, amongst all those thousands of applications that exist within the App Store there is not a single one that I can think of which could claim the iPad Killer App crown. Which brings us back to the real killer question: why would you buy this product? If you dismiss the early adopter and fanboy response there is no resoundingly convincing answer.
  10. It's not just a big iPhone as some suggest but it sure looks like one. I've already got an iPhone and it does more than the iPad can, plus it fits in my pocket. The iPad should not be compared to the iPhone when it cannot make phone calls, even if it does look like the kind of comedy smartphone that Trigger happy Dom Joly might whip out at the most inappropriate of moments.
  11. Where's the GPS? WTF, this thing has maps but it doesn't even have GPS. What were Apple thinking?
  12. Where's the camera? WTF, this thing would be perfect for video chat but unlike almost every cheap netbook or smartphone out there it forgot to include a camera of any sort.
  13. It's neither "truly magical" nor a "revolutionary product" despite what Steve Jobs says. Unless by magical you mean the trick of getting otherwise sensible technology journalists to start frothing at the mouth over what is, at the end of the day, actually just another tablet computer. Unless by revolutionary you mean that the designers revolted by refusing to give the masses the kind of truly innovative functionality they were expecting.
  14. As for good looking and a desirable design, err am I missing something? Before you bash me for this, I am an Apple fan and I do love my iPhone to death, but the iPad is surely just a little bit ugly isn't it? One word: big bezel. OK, two words.
  15. Then there are the little things such as the lack of any HDMI connectivity to view videos on your TV. Sure, as fanboys everywhere are quick to point out, a dock will be along to handle that at some point. But, as fanboys are quick to ignore, that's just Apple screwing you out of more money to get you to buy into an 'upgrade' for basic functionality that should have come right out of the box.
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Davey Winder

I'm a hacker turned writer and consultant, specialising in IT security. I've been a freelance word punk for over 20 years and along the way I have seen 23 of my books published, produced and presented programmes for TV and radio, picked up a bunch of awards and continue being a contributing editor with PC Pro - the best selling IT magazine in the UK .

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HiFidelity
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Where you aware of the irony of ending the fifth paragraph, which discusses sanitary products, with the word 'period'?

If you're a Brit, which I suspect you are, it may be time to knock the Americanisms on the head.

iWhoops indeed.

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happygeek
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Er, yes I was very aware of that. It's called British humour :)

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HiFidelity
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I meant my comment above to be tongue-in-cheek by the way. Hope it didn't come across as nasty.

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happygeek
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Re: point 11 - I am informed that GPS should make an appearance in the 3G version of the iPad when that finally arrives.

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ron.uminium
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Davey I think you are wrong. Many of your points are just gripes, and valid ones, but they do not mean it will not be a game-changer. It WILL be a game-changer. Yes it has some omissions but it's not like Apple hasn't made products with omissions before that didn't become huge game-changers. They decided to make it simple and cheap rather than complex and expensive, and they know exactly what they are doing. It's definitely a winner. They're going to sell millions, and others will ape it.

Nice 'period' gag :-)

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happygeek
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I'm not convinced they will sell millions of this one though, maybe iPad V2 or V3 which address the 'gripes' that I and many others have, but this particular model?

Will I buy one? Erm, despite all the failings, probably yes when the 3G model arrives :) After all I am something of a fanboy and an early adopter. Plus, for me, it's going to be all about the apps.

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Moobs
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The reason I love my iPhone is that it transcends the previous limitations of the smartphone factor. I am amazed at what apps let me do. Though I miss my Treo's physical keyboard, that is a price I'm prepared to pay. Frankly, I don't miss multi-tasking in something the size of an iPhone. Lack of Flash support is a pain but I wouldn't use the iPhone for serious browsing - just to get a bit of information I need immediately.

The iPad is big enough and expensive enough that there is no real reason not to resolve the iPhone's shortcomings and yet they seem to have been copied across as if Apple think they are features.

I once caught a friend using his highly specced ultraportable to browse amazon for a portable DVD player. When I asked why he was bothering since the his PC already had an optical drive and could do a billion other things on top, he had a satisfying "penny dropping" moment and saved himself the price of a player. The iPad has a similar feel to me. It's not that it's useless its just that rather than doing more than the competition it seems to do less and be proud of it.

It's the shuffle all over again. I boggled then as Steve explained to me how bizarre it was to want to be able to choose the order in which your music was played.

Will I end up with one in my mitts? Maybe. I certainly get this stuff wrong. When the Nintendo DS went up against the PSP I could not work out why anyone would want two tiny touch screens rather than the slab of shiny gorgeousness Sony was selling. However, I am just not feeling the techno-lust. Last time I did, it was looking at the vapury coverage of the Courier.

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happygeek
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I was just shown one application which the iPad is perfect for, but I'm not sure the fanboys will appreciate me saying it: all-in-one remote control. Seriously though, it does look good mocked up like that. I'm sure there will be no end of apps coming along to exploit the touch interface which will make us go 'wow' at some point. At this point, though, I'm still struggling to get past meh.

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stevfonz
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If you have a MacBook there's no need for an iPad. But if you have an iMac at home then it will be perfect with an iPad. If you then have an iPod or iPhone you have a portal life. I guess that a lot of people don't need a portable computer but sometimes they want to surf, show some pictures, play some games or something else and then the iPad will be enough.

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DallasDeckard
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HAHAHA! What was that? The iPad will fail! HAHA! Wrong!

Yesterday, Microsoft's Ballmer said: "Apple is doing an "interesting" job with the iPad and has "sold certainly more than I'd like them to sell."

Fortune magazine's article goes on to say:

As a result, Ballmer said his company's "job one urgency" is bringing Windows-based tablet computers to the market.

Bwahahahahaha!!!!!!! Uh, what was that windows7news.com... the iPad will fail? HAHA!

Fortune goes on to say:

"With the early success of Apple's (AAPL, Fortune 500) iPad, many analysts are predicting that the tablet space will be one of the fastest-growing tech segments this decade, alongside smartphones. That makes Microsoft's urgency all the more palpable."

Apple's stock is soaring because of the iPad sales, and in response to others trying to sell tablet-based devices, making it the biggest gainer among tech stocks on the S&P 500.

The iPad is selling faster than hotcakes. As of July 1, the iPad has sold more than 2 million units since its April 3 launch. In fact, the sales numbers of the iPad are outperforming the iPhone, and that ain't hay. Uh, sounds like a success to me.

Oops, looks like daniweb just showed why you never listen to Windoze people when it comes to tech predictions à la Apple.

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Junyah
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hhhmmm, apples and oranges. its all just fruit and in the hands of the hungry. it will feed and in the hand of a good chef one can surpass the other. in the hands of a bad chef, they both taste like junk.

It comes down to what you wanna use and what you want to buy. The iPad comes from the Santa Clara Valley where Mr. Mariani used to grow real fruit and crops where Apple is now. here tell the fruit was pretty good out of that orchard. they grew "Motorolas" down the street, but that crop's gone. you drive down Deanza for awhile into Los Gatos and that's where a guy made lots of money selling pet rocks and lumps of coal.

I've used the iPad and still use the original PAD. I like both. The PAD his been on the market a long time. I followed the Scroll Model, Slate and the Original stone "TABLET". Some dude, scribed down 10 or so things on the tablet called "Commandments". Some people follow them as "Gospel" oops that came later but not originally from "Amazon" and not on the "Kindle" but you can get it on the "Ipad', "Kindle", Linux and all that ... Well nuf said... I think i'll power down, put the notebook and pencil down and enjoy a nice "sunset" go play outside 'the graphics and sounds are better than any ipad or iphone .. oh, i think i'll stroke and pinch the wife ..

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