Thursday, 28 January 2010

My thoughts on the Apple iPad

So tonight the internet went a bit crazy with the culmination of weeks, no months of hype! Apple finally unveiled its highly anticipated Tablet device they've name the iPad. I thought I'd share my initial thoughts and reaction to the device as undoubtedly the rest of the internet will.

I've never been a huge Apple fan, I have an iPhone 3G but it's the only device I own. If I wasn't able to jailbreak it then I wouldn't own that either. However, with all the hacks and modifications applied it becomes an unbeatable device. It shows what Apple could do if they really tried!

With the announcement of the iPad it seems nothing has changed, it's a disappointing over priced half arsed attempt at a tablet. It seems obvious to me that Apple have deliberately crippled this device so they can easily improve it in future annual product update cycles.

At the end of the day, the iPad is basically a big iPhone without the calling, SMS and camera functionality. The biggest surprise here has to be the lack of a camera, I mean seriously... cameras have been standard in devices for years. How can Apple think it acceptable to leave one out of this device and how much are you willing to wager that they'll add one to the next iPad? The iPad would have been ideal for making video Skype calls with its internet capabilities after all, to say nothing of the popularity with video blogs.

It seems Apple have produced an awesome piece of hardware but just not bothered with the OS too. Why create a device with this much power and a screen this large and then slap the iPhone's OS on to it? This means no multi-tasking, but perhaps the biggest crime is NO FLASH support! In a machine this size web browsing is a big part of the experience. If you can't use Flash then it effectively renders the iPad useless. It's such a massive let down! Just look at the top of this post, don't you think it looks ridiculous with the small icons separated out across that massive screen? Apple haven't even tried to customise the firmware for this device!

Then we come to the price, why do Apple think it is appropriate to charge an extra $130 to have a SIM slot added to your device? You can't even use it unless you pay a monthly subscription to a mobile data provider! The slot should be part of the standard hardware, I simply cannot believe that it isn't.

The iPad has far too many things missing and adds nothing new to the current offering to make me even remotely interested. I'm not going to rule out ever owning one, in a year or so when they release an update that should have been what this is and the OS is improved and I can jailbreak it. Then I might be tempted. This reminds me very much of the original iPhone, a great idea but fatally flawed in its execution.

I'll pass for now, come back when you've got it right Apple!