First Cynical Impressions of new Apple tablet
Wednesday, January 27, 2010 | Author: Mad Typist

Quickly written, poorly edited first response to the newly unveiled Apple tablet device.

1. The Name
The "iPad"? What's up with that name? Sounds like something that Always or Tampax would market. I'm not sure why they didn't go with the infinitely more awesome "iSlate" or "iTablet".

2. Battery Life
Awesome! 10 hours of usage, up to 1 month of standby time. That's amazing. However, the cynic in me thinks, "Hmm, just like the iPod and iPhone, I suspect that the battery won't be removable, and will probably suck after about a year of ownership. Which means I can look forward to paying $99 so an Apple tech can put a new battery in."

3. Storage Space
I'm not dazzled with this feature. The base (read: most affordable) model will have only 16GB of storage. That's not great, especially if you want video. The storage space tops out at 64 GB, which isn't great for people who want to carry a lot of multimedia. I also question the storage space given that developers will likely start to develop games and apps that are larger for this platform.

4. No Flash support
Great. You've got a web browser built in, but you can't visit Flash-based sites. That means Hulu.com won't work, thus eliminating a competitor in the video-on-demand market. This means that a lot of interactive sites you might visit won't function correctly either. This is lame.

5. 3G
Available through AT&T, though it will cost you $29.95 per month for unlimited data. I like that the device can be used on other carriers, if you want.

6. Looks sexy
Of course it does. It's an Apple product. It's nothing, if not beautiful. The tablet is super light weight too - I can't wait to see how it feels in my hands.

7. New iBooks storefront
Looks pretty spiffy. Slightly higher price point than Amazon, but unsure how much extra cash that might mean for publishers. Major kudos for offering ePub format, which is an open standard.
8. Sounds a little pricey
Per Engadget.com, the price points are as follows:
"It starts at $499 for 16GB, 32GB for $599, and $699 64GB. Adding 3G costs a $130 per model, so the most expensive model (64GB / 3G) is $829."

That's.... a bit rich for my taste, especially since you need to toss an extra $29.95 per month on top of that if you want to actually leverage the 3G capability.

9. But I love to feel actual keys when I type!
Comes with built-in Bluetooth or you can get a keyboard dock. Either way, those of you who hate typing on the screen itself have options. Nice feature.

10. Doesn't seem to come with a camera
Frankly, that's sort of disappointing. I think this could have been a product that really made videoconferencing more mainstream. I sort of envisioned a camera on both sides of the device, utilizing technology such as Skype to handle the videochat functions.

11. Does it multitask?
If it's using the iPhone OS, it probably doesn't multitask. That's surprising/disappointing. With the larger screen, it's be nice to have a few apps open at a time.

update #1: Engadget has an interesting price breakdown of 3G service on the iPad versus the iPhone.

update #2: No stylus/handwriting support? I'm surprised - you'd think that would be a natural addition, and would have gone a long way towards making this a Kindle-killer. I would have loved to see a demo of annotating an ePub document with a stylus.

update #3: Git yer purdy iPad pictures here at the official Apple site.

note: this post may change, as more details come out, but this is what I'm thinking right now. Pic above is from the AP.
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