My thoughts on Apples „latest creation“ – aka „iPad“

Is the iPad the next big thing? Yes.
Is it the next revolution? Well, probably not from a tech point of view. The implications this device might/will bring for various industries could be described as a revolution. However, the success of this device will not be as „shocking“ as the iPod’s. By now people would be disappointed if an Apple gadget would not rock the world.
Will I get one? Most likely not – and here is why.I really do like that device. The size is… plausible. The weight is probably okay – even if held in one or both hands for longer than a couple of minutes. I really don’t care about that „missing“ camera!

iPhone OS is probably a wise choice for that thingy. Being able to run all the more than 100,000 Apps that are already out there is great and the new Mail, Calendar and Address Book Apps really look stunningly amazing and „just right“.

However, the killer feature for me would be the eBook reader. By now, I didn’t have a chance to take a look at that screen, yet, so I don’t know if it’s really good enough to read a book on it for several hours straight – but I suppose it will be.
But for an „eBook Reader with benefits“ that thing is way to expensive for me.

I had to defend that point against a couple of guys throughout the day. Main arguments were, that I wouldn’t understand the iPad. I could take it with me and it could replace my laptop – at least sometimes.
Well, first of all: in order to take it with me without rendering it close to useless I would have to shell out 130 bucks more up front to get the 3G version.

When do I take my laptop with me right now – only when I know that I’ll have to write longer texts (like this one). I know how to type with ten fingers and am pretty fast at it and in order to type as fast as I can and without looking at the keys, I need real, physical keys. Keys that are big enough for my, some say, ridiculously big hands. With the iPad I would most likely have to step down from using 10 fingers to probably eight or even six.

„Get that keyboard-dock-thingy, then!“, they shouted. Well, that thing looked pretty big. I’d have to carry a bigger bag with me – and to buy that keyboard-dock-thing first. I don’t know the price of that dock yet, but I think combined with the 3G iPad this would take me close to the price of the white MacBook.
However, I replied that I don’t want to carry a keyboard around. It probably doesn’t have batteries in it, so that I’d need to find a wallsocket, to power my friggin‘ keyboard while using the iPad. And: I already have a device with an upright screen and a keyboard beneath it. My MacBook.

„But you can also check and answer mails with that thing, and stuff“. Yeah, well, right, I can do that. I’m already doing that while on the road – with my MacBook or, if I don’t have that with me, with my iPhone.
„But the iPad is better at it! Don’t you see?!“. I reeeaally don’t care. So it’s 630 bucks plus that keyboard-dock-thingy for an eBook Reader that I can also do my e-mailng „better“ with?

Don’t get me wrong: I really like the iPad. If someone would give me one to keep, he’d surely be my hero of the day, week and even month. But I really don’t want to buy one.

How do I get one then?
I hope that newspapers and magazines, even in Germany, will soon enough understand, that this thing could bring them back into business.
They could generate new subscribers while minimizing printing and delivery costs for those subscribers to… well… zero.
I really do hope, that papers like the New York Times or the German Der Spiegel will come up with offers like: our current paper-subscription model costs you sum x per year. Here’s our deal: you pay sum x minus 20 per cent and only get the digital editions. You also pay 200 bucks at the start of your one or two year contract and we’ll give you an iPad.

But that’s probably nothing but wishful thinking…

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