After a week of usage, here are my thoughts
Let me say that I purchased an iPad for my wife. She's not fond of laptops with its trackpad and doesn't like capacitive touch phones like the iPhone or Droid because it doesn't work with her long fingernails. So, I was surprised when we borrowed a friend's iPad and she fell in love with it. It's the perfect device for her and I'm glad it's available. But it's not for me. Here's why.
- I've come to the conclusion that the touch interface is not my cup of tea. It's not very accurate and made really for a consumption device, like the iPad. I'm a touch typist and I need to be able to feel the nubs on the F and J keys to align my hands when typing. I can't type quickly at all on the iPad and it's frustrating.
- I definitely don't like the walled garden. The forced layout of the icons is very annoying. I like to organize things. My way. Unfortunately, the iPad likes to organize things. It's way. We don't get along. Once you get past a few pages of icons it's a real nightmare to find things. Apple needs to learn a lesson from Android on this one. Android has screen organization down very well.
- The inconsistency in the interface is just plain annoying. Take "Pictures" for example. This is the ideal product to show pictures. It's beautiful and makes for a great picture showing device. When looking at pictures I have a number of choices with regard to transition between pictures. But the most important choice, how long to show a picture, is no where to be found. Even a $50 LCD picture frame has this option. Maybe there's a way to do this if I dig around, but shouldn't it be there with the transitions option? Didn't any of the engineers use this thing before releasing it?
- Smudges. I'm a "clean nut." The look of the screen with grease smudges from the hands of many people as it gets passed around the room literally makes me want to gag. I can only barely stand the grease from my own hand. Yeah, I know a laptop keyboard is just as germ ridden, but I don't have to have those germs staring back at me reminding me of them. Yuck, yuck.
- The screen is too small. Almost always, when looking at a web page, I must stretch it. Maybe your eyes are better but a 16" laptop screen is about the limit of small size. The iPad is a consumption device. In the age where people buy 52" TVs as a norm why would anyone want a 10" device for consumption?
- Price. God this thing was expensive. $806 with tax and a case for 64gb. I just paid $450 for a laptop with 320 gig, 4g ram, DVD reader, and many other bells and whistles.
- This machine is an enigma. It doesn't do things better than a laptop, is harder to carry around than a smart phone, it's only claim to fame is convenience. And, that's even questionable. It needs to be propped up to use it in your lap. Put a pillow under it, my wife does. She has to tilt it this way and that to get the glare off. Yet, with all its faults, it's wildly popular.
- After a week of owing one I don't get it. I wanted to get it. It's a very cool gadget. Very cool. But that $806 can also purchase a 42" LCD TV AND an Xbox 360, which is also very cool. Alas, my wife likes it and, in the end, that's all that matters.