iPad? Seriously?

t1larg.steve.jobs.tablet.giI’ve had a crush on Steve Jobs for 20 years.

But, Steve, my man, you muffed it on the name.  Big time. Because only one thing comes to mind when women hear the word “pad” and a computer isn’t it.

But you know, Steve is a rockstar.  Always has been.  Always will be.  I suspect that after a whole lot of cheap iPenis jokes, we’ll all get over it.

Back when I got my first job at an ad agency, one of the things I remember doing on my very first day was to sit down at my original Mac Classic and spend a half hour or so on a a “How To Use a Mouse” tutorial.  Because, believe it or not, back in those days most people didn’t have  a clue.

Another memory?  Circa 1993 or so for some mysterious reason I remember asking someone, “what’s a home page?”  Because, believe it nor not, back in those days most people didn’t have a clue.

The whole world has changed so much in my lifetime that sometimes it astonishes me.  And no company is better at leading the world in innovation than Apple.

You’d have to be living under the proverbial rock to have missed all the hype about the announcement of the new Apple Tablet.  Which, according to all the breathless reports, was going to revolutionize the ebook biz.

Watching the event live and reading a fair bit of the online coverage after, I just don’t see that.

Of course, reading isn’t as sexy as video games, movies, photos, and surfing the Web, so I guess it’s to be expected that the book side of the announcement was…well, not freakin’ much.

Because it was totally not freakin’ much.  You can read ebooks on the iPad.  Whoopdedoo!

My takeaway?  Despite Steve Jobs’ magnificent showmanship, it works like an iPhone.  Only it’s bigger. And faster. (Though the second generation iPhone wasn’t one bit faster than the first – despite all the hype.) And, gee, correct me if I missed something, but where was the Kindle app?  Hello, I love, love, love being able to read on both my Kindle and my iPhone and have them sync automatically.  No Kindle App is a deal breaker.

And you know what?  My iPhone fits in my pocket.  Despite hearing a news anchor say that the iPad puts the whole world “in the palm of your hand,” the only palm I can think of that the iPad might fit is King Kong’s.  Maybe.

The price is better than I expected, but, hello, AT & T monthly data charges as well?  Kindle wireless is free.

Bottom line for me?  I can’t use it for work.  I’m already set on the e-reader front.  So, unless Apple works some powerful mojo over the next few months, for now I’m passing.

But Apple makes mojo.  Powerful mojo.  And, if past performance is any indication, it works on me.  Oh, yeah, it does.

What about you? You buying or passing?

- Sandy AAR

This entry was posted in Book news, E-books, Reading and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

47 Responses to iPad? Seriously?

  1. Elizabeth says:

    I never even went there with the name, but its true many a joke will be flying. I’m actually a Kindle owner and was still looking forward to apples latest creation. Unfortunately I’m a little disappointed and will be passing until the next version comes out in 6mths to a year (hoping). And I’m passing for all the reasons you listed above and added to it I was looking to replace my trusty laptop with this new device but to me its just an EXPENSIVE flashy ereader, well right now my free 3G, low priced books KINDLE works just fine.


  2. Janet W says:

    PASS. Still haven’t bought an e-anything and since I buy most of my books from Amazon, I absolutely will look for compatibility if and when I step up. I’m on the Balogh Yahoo group and many of the ladies there rave about the ease of their e-readers. Or they did until the publishers started holding back delivery :(

    Flash flash flash … Stephen Fry blogging about it: I am starting out 20*10 wearing the shroud of a cynic. How about better CONTENT and less endless hype about the delivery vehicles?

  3. The name never brought that to mind for me. It made me think of iPod and it seemed a natural connection (though, admittedly not a brilliant name choice). I want one, but I’ll wait for awhile, too. The kinks will be worked out and the price will come down, then I’ll jump.

  4. LizJ says:

    Pass…for now. I don’t have the money for it, and it’s usually better not to buy a piece of technology when it first comes out (even Apple).

    However, I love my iTouch, and I’d rather pay $500-$600 for a multi-use tablet than $250-$300 for a reader. The iPad will do a number of things quite well, from play videos to web surfing. If the reader app is not hard on the eyes, this might well be a Kindle/Nook/Sony Reader killer.

    The added features for books on the iPad will be beneficial for publishers of textbooks, biographies/historical books, and books on arts and entertainment, as opposed to fiction.

  5. misty says:

    I’m so conflicted on this one. I’m a bit of an Apple fangirl, and the price isn’t bad, but this seriously seems like a giant iTouch. Rather underwhelming. I was sort of thinking of it to replace my broken Kindle, but I don’t think it compares. The price point for the ibooks is about $15.00. That’s going to have to get a lot cheaper to compete with Kindle, and that is on top of Kindle having the advantage with the e-ink screen. It’s annoying me that they’re saying the iPad is going to be the death of the Kindle because I’m not seeing it.

    On the other hand, this would be great for general entertainment purposes. We’re going on a long road trip this summer and I might just buy one to keep myself and my daughter entertained during the drive. With a 10 hour battery life, their new painting program, and the ability to play games and movies this seems like a terrific fit.

  6. MarissaB says:

    I like the name. Made me think of a notepad I carry around in my purse. I’d need a way bigger purse to carry this new Apple toy.

    My first thought was that I could use the iPad as a replacement for a laptop while I’m on vacation, just so I can get to the web and e-mail. If I had an iPhone, that would be moot.

    I have a Kindle 2. The books are cheaper and there are no monthly charges for data downloads. I don’t think the iPad will be the death of the Kindle, just competition. As a consumer, I love having the choices.

    I won’t be tempted to buy until the price goes way down. And even then, maybe I’ll get an iPhone instead.

  7. Diana says:

    Pass for now. A monthly service charge is the deal breaker since I’m already paying for iPhone service.

    Does anyone know if the Kindle app now available for iPhone will be an option for iPad? Kindle book store has lowest prices out there…consistently.

  8. Fay says:

    I’d be able to read my books in the dark!!! On the Apple website, you can watch the video for the IPad to see a demonstration of the e-reader function. In addition to being backlit, the pages look like a book and turn with a flip of the finger like a book – that would be cool! The book pages cover the entire length of the reader, unlike Kindle where the bottom third of device is the Keyboard. You can change the text size with simple finger movements on the screen. From the demonstration I saw, I think newspapers will be nice to read on the IPad. I once tried a newspaper on my Kindle and it was horrible!
    Not sure if I’ll buy the IPad, my Kindle with it’s ColeHaan bomber jacket-like leather cover is pretty cozy and the Kindle print is easy on the eyes.
    About the IPad name – my first thought (being an M.D.) is that it’s a dressing we cover the eye with after flushing the eye with saline and applying ophthalmic ointment. Oh well, what would have been a better name? The “I tune out the people around me” device or ITotpam device???

  9. Herta says:

    but…but….you can’t print something, I hate the touch screen for typing and no, I don’t want to buy a separate keyboard – kind of defeats the purpose. I have found the new netbooks, i.e. the Acer Aspire and all of the other similar mini-computers way more versatile and productive AND they fit into my purse.

    Although the look of the ipad is very seductive, it’s actual usefullness, especially for business applications, is quite limited. I mean, if all I do with technology is enterain myself, maybe the ipad is the way to go but given that I actually use technology for work and business purposes, the ipad will not do.

  10. Wendy says:

    and spend a half hour or so on a a “How To Use a Mouse” tutorial. Because, believe it or not, back in those days most people didn’t have a clue.

    Heh – these people STILL exist. Librarians see them every day.

    $500 for the base line model? Yeah, I choked when I saw that. Of course this is Steve Jobs and people seem to get off by throwing their money at him – so whatever. But for me? I’m sorry – $500?!?! For the base line model?!?!? And holy crap – there are monthly service charges on top of that?!?!?!

    I was very happy to see that the iPad will support the EPUB format – which makes my wee lil’ librarian heart pitter-patter. But the screen? I don’t know about that….. The thing I really love about my Sony is the eInk technology. It is NOT like reading off a computer screen. At all. And after looking at a computer all day at work, I can easily go to my Sony Reader without causing a massive headache or eye strain.

    But at the end of the day? The more the merrier I say. The more eReading devices out there, the sooner prices will drop. Hopefully.

  11. I’m in Europe – they say that the iPad will be here in March/April, but I won’t be getting an e-book reader yet. The iPad appeals more than Kindle/Sony readers because of colour function, multi-function – again, I’ve got kids and something that does itunes, youtube and ibooks sounds just what I’m missing. But if I can download ibooks onto my Macbook pro, I’m not sure I really need a tablet too.

  12. Lee says:

    The thing is, this thing is HUGE! The first thing I thought of was those first cell phones that were the size of a ruler! Pass.

  13. LizJ says:

    Monthly service charges are only for hooking into the cell phone network. The WiFi-only version doesn’t have the service charge, and I’m assuming you could get one of the 3G ones and not utilize cell phone service, since they have WiFi too.

    As far as hooking into accessories, what I’m hearing is that there will be dock connectors to hook into things. Whether there will be one soon for printers or not, I don’t know.

    I’m wondering about file transfer, since there’s a paint program and there will be an iPad version of iWork…will it all go through iTunes or will there be some desktop file sharing when the iPad is attached to a computer?

  14. Fay says:

    LizJ (or anybody),
    Two big questions I have that I can’t find answers to:
    1) Will I be able to make phone calls or send text messages from this device?
    2) Will I be able to work on Word documents or Excel?
    Thank you to whoever may be able to answer this!

    • KYoung says:

      Fay: LizJ (or anybody),
      Two big questions I have that I can’t find answers to:
      1) Will I be able to make phone calls or send text messages from this device?
      2) Will I be able to work on Word documents or Excel?
      Thank you to whoever may be able to answer this!

      - It’s like the iPod Touch, not the iPhone, so no, you can’t make phone calls or text (probably a deal-killer for many).
      - Not sure about MS office documents. You can run the Apple production suite, which I’ve found converts pretty well to PC applications. I use a PC at work, but take my personal Mac on the road. I switch back and forth between the two OS’ all the time.

      I was disappointed Apple chose to use the IPhone OS, not the Mac OS. However, I’m still interested enough that I’ll probably visit the local Mac store once they come out and take it for a spin. I spend a lot of time on long plane rides; having a toy that actually fits on the tray table on which I can work on presentations, edit documents, watch a movie, or read a book would be very useful.

  15. Bart Croker says:

    And currently, not even fifteen years later, we tend to grasp, soon enough, you

  16. MaryK says:

    Pass, I think. It’s really shiny, and I was drooling over it when I first saw it. But I’d be buying it instead of a netbook and, after reflection, it seems like a glorified iTouch and not nearly versatile enough to compete with a netbook. I’ll see what the reviews say when they start shipping to real customers, but I’ll probably end up getting an iTouch (which I’ve been saving up for) and a netbook as my budget allows.

  17. Diana says:

    Wi-Fi is way faster around here than 3G, even 3GS which is what I have. Still I can see using it only at home. Can’t see stuffing it in a bag and carrying it around. So essentially I’d be buying a pretty shiny new toy that does what the iPhone does on a bigger screen. Tempting, but no.

  18. LauraR says:

    PASS. I just got an iphone this month and am enjoying it. I read books on my iPod Touch… I have had it for over a year and yes I can do that in the dark without an extra light source. The new tablet looks to be about the size of 4 iPod touches and like someone else said, too big to carry in my hand. I have been noticing for quite a while that releases of ebooks have been lagging behind the print versions. It’s really annoying.

  19. AAR Sandy says:

    It’s a shiny and admittedly seductive new toy. And, as Wendy says, people seem to get off on throwing money at Steve Jobs. Heck, I get off throwing money at Steve Jobs.

    I think, though, as someone said that more people reading books is a good thing. Always. So, welcome to the e-reader category, cool gods of Apple. Long live reading.

  20. Kelly B says:

    I think this also says a lot about the demographics of the tech industry. Hey, Apple, maybe you might want to think about hiring more women, because I’m guessing if you had a couple on your marketing team, this would have come up.

  21. Anne Marble says:

    It looks pretty, but pretty electronic things often have a shorter battery life. Bells and whistles draw power.

    This morning, radio tech guru Kim Komando was interviewed by a local talk radio station. She called the iPad a “Kindle killer” and said it was going to kick around all the other e-book readers — nook, etc. Yeah, right. You can tell she doesn’t know much about e-book readers. Who wants something that costs at least twice as much as most e-book readers, snares you into paying for yet another data plan, and has far less battery life? (The Kindle has a battery life of seven days. The nook battery life varies.) The iPad is also heavier, coming in at 1.5 pounds.

    But what does she know? She made some comment about how you sometimes have to use a light with eInk readers. Oh the horror, I had to pay five dollars for a book light. ;) But in bright lighting conditions, I’ll bet my eInk screen kicks the pants off the iPad’s display. And most of the time I use my nook, it’s under bright lighting conditions — under conditions where it can be hard to see many other types of screens. (Ever try to read a laptop screen outside?)

  22. LeeAnn says:

    They shoulda called it the “Applet”. That said, I’m passing until I can find something that will play audiobooks as well as let me read e’books.

  23. Cora says:

    I have zero interest in the iPad and won’t be getting one. For starters, I’m not an Apple fan – their products are nice to look at, but expensive and vastly overhyped.

    Basically, the iPad is a toy for people who primarily use the device to watch films, surf the web, listen to music, play games and maybe read e-books/newspapers. However, I need to write and the touchscreen keyboard won’t do for anything more than an e-mail. Plus, the bloody thing probably doesn’t even have proper word processing software (so far, it doesn’t run MS-Office). File transfer is difficult, because the thing doesn’t seem to have an USB port.

    So I’ll stick with my desktop PC as my central data hub, which has all my files, etc… and my laptop as a mobile device. Both allow me to do what the iPad does (watch films, surf the web, listen to music, read, e-books) and they allow me to write and actually do something productive. And if I just want to pass the time on a lengthy flight or train ride, well there is this thing called a paperback book.

    What I’d like to see is a mobile device small enough to carry around in my handbag, which allows me to actually type (with a proper keyboard, not poking a touchscreen with a stylus, which is more cumbersome than longhand) and store documents bigger than the odd e-mail message. However, no one seems to produce such a device at the moment – it’s all bells and whistles and few useful functions. So until then, I still tote my trusty Moleskine notebook and a paperback around in situations where the laptop would be cumbersome.

  24. What do you think about the iPad and “best web experience ever” (with no flash support)??

  25. CindyS says:

    I’m geeky enough to say I want one because it reminds me of the Star Trek hand held tablets. I think the size is perfect (tonight I was thinking how I’m the generation of bigger is better while the new generation wants to watch movies on an iPod!) and I think it opens up a world of possibilities. I also have a tendency to sit on the sidelines and wait till the dust settles. Let’s just say, I see a future version of this in my home one day!


  26. How long before someone hacks the iPad to add Flash support? I mean really, come on…

  27. AAR Sandy says:

    Cora, total Apple fangirl here: Expensive I will agree with and overhyped definitely, too, but I think Apple products deliver. The iPod revolutionized the way the world accesses music and sometimes when I’m downloading a tune I just thought of two minutes earlier and listening to it seconds later, it still amazes me. Simply astounding. So there is a reason that the world gets so excited when the company makes a major product announcement.

    It’s not for work (I need Microsoft Word) and I’ve already got the e-reader thing covered, so I’m still passing on this generation of iPad, anyway.

    Anne, Kindle killer? I just don’t see that for a larger size product that costs more and requires substantial monthly data charges. Radio Lady, get a clue.

  28. Tinabelle says:


    This is way too much technology for me and far beyond my budget. I love my iMac and my Kindle and just don’t see me using a lot of the features on some of these “do everything” devises. My technology profile is pretty low and I like things simple. I do think that more competition is good for the whole ereader/epublishing business but the book prices are higher than Amazon which is where I do my book buying these days.

  29. Ferris says:

    Apple’s in fashion iTablet will rapidly blow up after this initial over-hype period during it’s unveiling. The touch screen and Job’s potential to fix some problems will definitly to make the iPad a success in for the forseeable future.

  30. Flint says:

    Mac’s new iPad will rapidly gain some steam after the first push time during it’s launch. The touch screen and Job’s potential to fix defections will help to make the iTablet a monster in years to come.

  31. Fitzpatrick says:

    Apple’s groovy computer will rapidly gain some steam after the first push time during it’s launch. The lack of keyboard and Mac’s potential to fix some problems will definitly to make the product a monster in the time ahead.

  32. Frith says:

    Apple’s revolutionary innovation will rapidly gain some steam after this initial over-hype time during it’s launch. The touch screen and Job’s potential to fix defections will help to make the iTablet a huge product in years to come.

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  34. KarenS says:

    Eventually buying as my dh says it’s exactly what I need. It will do every thing that I do presently and gets the operating system out of the way. No mouse, no desktop. Just basically a really big Iphone that is tactile. I touch what I want to do. I like my iPhone(just got it 2 weeks ago) and learning to use it.

    There is a Kindle app for the iPhone. Apple says that iPhone apps will run on the iPad. I can’t see them leaving this out.

    The iPad comes in two versions. One version has WiFi only and you can download apps/books over WiFi at home or at work. The second version has WiFi and AT@T 3 g service which costs $29 per month for unlimited downloads, that’s about half of most competing laptop data plans. The data plan is optional.

    The kindle wins this one regarding battery life but I think 10 hours is plenty. The Kindle’s display is not backlit and is not readable at night without an auxiliary light of some kind. The iPad has a color display and can do things besides reading books. It should be great at web browsing, email, movies, music and games.

    Apple will offer iWork, a suite of 3 office programs compatible with Word, PowerPoint and Excel.

    You will be able to print from the iWork suite to a network printer.

    Re: Steve Jobs. He’s certainly a powerhouse in the computer industry. Definitely a visionary who appreciates aesthetics. Actually Jonathan Ive has played a huge part in the latest designs since he is the Lead Designer. Jonathan has to keep Steve happy. Seems like he’s doing a good job.

    Funny thing to note: Steve Jobs looks just like my brother. They are both tall, Steve is thinner than my bro, both have piercing brown eyes and the same facial features and my bro has hair. I laugh when I see Jobs as I feel like I am seeing my brother. It’s a hoot. My brother is 60 but looks like a 50 year old guy and Jobs looks way older than a 54 year old guy.

  35. MarissaB says:

    Just read this and thought the group might find it interesting.


    It’s about Apple and their lack of women in top company positions….
    which may be why their new toy is called the iPad – or iKotex in some circles.

  36. Zune and iPod: Most people compare the Zune to the Touch, but after seeing how slim and surprisingly small and light it is, I consider it to be a rather unique hybrid that combines qualities of both the Touch and the Nano. It’s very colorful and lovely OLED screen is slightly smaller than the touch screen, but the player itself feels quite a bit smaller and lighter. It weighs about 2/3 as much, and is noticeably smaller in width and height, while being just a hair thicker.Have you tried the ipad? you can get one free at FreshGiftCard.com

  37. Wonderful post, and I was thinking about a similar article which I will probably still take a shot at, but from a slightly different angle. Thanks for sharing this with your readers…I’m sure I’m not the only one who appreciates it.

  38. Elijah Farry says:

    Hiya Im having issues finding cheap Ipad Accessories. Any suggestions on a great store to purchase ?

  39. P1 Ho says:

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  40. Samuel Altic says:

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