Gifting an iPad to Mac/PC Neophytes

Discussion in 'iPad General Discussions' started by hightimes, Aug 17, 2010.

  1. hightimes
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    hightimes iPF Novice

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    I'm considering giving my parents an iPad as a gift but here's the rub:
    1. Both are retirees and with a minimum of computer know-how
    2. Current computer is 10 year old PC running Windows XP
    3. Just got them off dial-up last year
    4. They live 3.5 hours away
    5. Neither has ever used any kind of Mac product
    6. Leery of internet purchases (i.e. I don't know how they would like the idea of having their cc registered on itunes)
    7. They don't do any heavy computing, just web surfing/e-mail
    8. My last Mac was that little boxy thing about 20 years ago

    Here's my dilemma: My mom is frustrated with the PC - it's just too cumbersome, takes too long to boot, too compilcated, and she hates being tied to a room. I'd considered getting her a netbook but I'm pretty sure she'd hate the tiny screen. And a laptop is out because I know she'd hate dragging something like that around the house.

    Given their situation and needs I figured the iPad would be perfect for them. Lightweight, mobile (they have wireless), yada, yada, yada. Now the real question is...how easy is it for someone not familiar with computers to learn? I'm too far away to drop by if they have a problem and not familiar enough with the iPad or Mac products in general to give them advice over the phone.

    Anyone out there gift an iPad to a non-techie?
  2. gentlefury
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    gentlefury iPad Guru

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    My mom is about the most non tech savvy in the world and I got her an iMac and she loves it. I got my little brother an iPad, and she has used it and has no problem.
  3. Holly
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    Holly iPad Fan

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    I am retired. My main computer is older than your parents. My net book is only used to synch my pad - I really wouldn't recommend it as a substitute new one to replace the XP. I love it for surfing speed, book reading and playing basic games. They can email any questions. Or..... You could set it up on your laptop and when you visit back it up.
    I am Canadian so it might be different for you but maybe registered gift cards might be an answer to the CC problem. The wish/gift list on Amazon might help too.
  4. iVan
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    iVan iPad Ninja

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    If your parents gave birth to an intelligent learning being should they not have the same talents? Give them the tools, the way to search for answers, they'll manage. That's all they need...
  5. hightimes
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    hightimes iPF Novice

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    Thanks for the responses!

    You know that one Mac commercial with Justin Long, the one where the gal says, "I just want it to work!" - that's my mom. She doesn't want to spend hours researching or toying with something trying to figure out how it works or why it doesn't (as is often the case with their PC). I don't want to give them another device that causes them frustration...I want to make sure that by giving them an iPad, I'm not just giving them a case of "same headaches...different platform."

    I found out there's an Apple store near them. Could they take their iPad in for some quick questions? Is that frowned upon? What about lack of flash support - has that been an issue for her?
  6. henry2
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    henry2 iPad Junkie

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    they a should not have a problem with it with some basic ideas of how to use it with you takeing them through some basic of how it would work ..
  7. iVan
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    iVan iPad Ninja

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    Give them this site's address!:)
  8. hightimes
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    hightimes iPF Novice

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    Noob Question

    Dumb question - do you need a computer to configure the iPad? That is, can I run it out of the box without hooking it up to a PC/Mac?
  9. gentlefury
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    gentlefury iPad Guru

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    They can in fact go to the apple store and they actually have classes to learn how to use all their products including the iPad.

    If they don't have a computer or don't know how to set it up they will do it at the apple store. I even asked about if my little brother could bring his ipad to an apple store to get the system updates if he doesn't have a computer at school and they said yes.

    They are very customer oriented and will do anything they can to keep you happy and buying apple products.
  10. Prasius
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    Prasius iPad Enthusiast

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    Out of curiosity about what would happen I gave my iPad to my dad to look at... This is a man who won't even use an ATM.. And within 5 minutes he was flicking through gardening websites with very little coaching.

    I think this is a good thing. :)
  11. hightimes
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    hightimes iPF Novice

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    Sold!

    I checked out the website and they appear to have 1 hour classes every other week which is really awesome. And, if they'll set it up for me at the store, I don't have to worry about stumbing around through a setup procedure at my folk's house.

    A VERY good thing.

    Well, I'm sold. I figure the worst thing that could happen is they absolutely HATE it in which case I'll pay the restocking fee and return it or (more likely) I'll become the proud owner of a slightly used iPad - not that that's an ulterior motive or anything! :D

    Thanks for the help folks. I'll come back and post an update after they've had a chance to try it out.
  12. Holly
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    Holly iPad Fan

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    I would plan to get to use it only when you visit them!
  13. hightimes
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    hightimes iPF Novice

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    Thought I'd check in with an update:

    A couple of weeks ago I stopped by the Apple store near my parent’s place and picked up the 32 GB WiFi only model. I was totally stressed out about this purchase and wanted to get it done. I told the employee that I wanted the iPad to work out of the box, i.e. no mothership connection, so he hooked it up to one of the in-store computers and before you could say the “i" in iPad I was out the door. I also got the Apple case due to its light weight (my mom thought my Kindle was heavy if that’s any indication).

    Popped it out for them and gave them the basic tour. Their wireless router showed up immediately which was a relief and setting their email up was beyond simple. We even downloaded and viewed some pictures and PowerPoint slides…piece of cake. The hardest part was getting them set up with an iTunes account – the fields were a bit on the small side and the password criteria was vague (“No it needs to be more than 6 chars…Sorry, it needs to have numbers…Sorry, it needs to have a capital letterâ€) I didn’t enter a credit card because I knew they’d be suspicious of that. But we spent the next couple of hours playing with it: Youtube, downloaded a couple of free apps (weather, news, the usual). I kept telling them, “You can’t hurt this thing. Don’t be afraid to play with it.â€

    The next morning after my mom got back from her morning Starbucks run, she immediately powered on the iPad and looked up a website – by herself. She’s going to sign up for the free hour class after she’s been able to play with it for a while and can generate a few questions, but plans to bring it to Starbucks and use it while she’s drinking her latte.

    Knock on wood, all the agonizing I inflicted on myself seems to have been for nothing.
  14. Dbolen888
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    Dbolen888 iPF Novice

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    Non-techies add to Cyber world

    I wonder to what degree the iPad (and follow-on wannabes) will increase the Cyber world's population? In this thread, we hear of non-techies coming aboard via the iPad. I had heard that the older set in Japan is using iPads to "come of age."
  15. mwhartman
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    mwhartman Administrator Staff Member

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    +1 for Apples customer service. Their phone and in store service is exemplary, IMO. Last year, I purchased a MacBook Pro. For an additional $100 I purchased Apple's one to one care. It allows me to go to ANY Apple store for a one hour session on any topic I pick. I feel that is quite a good value.

    Two years ago, my wife's Windows XP box died. I purchased an iMac for my wife. I opened the box powered up. connected the DSL and it just worked! She is not tech savvy and now she would not give it up.

    Mike
  16. Squirrel71
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    Squirrel71 iPF Novice

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    My mom has been asking questions about the iPad - those commercials must have gotten to her, lol. I may get her a 16GB Wifi one for Christmas..

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