I got to use an iPad yesterday for the first time and I’m now more confused about what it’s for. OK let me clarify. I now want one less than I thought I did. No amount of hyperbole can disguise the fact that it is in fact an oversized iPhone and whereas many journalists and pundits see this as a slight I don’t, it’s the iPad greatest strength but also ironically it’s key flaw.
The form factor is better than I expected and shows Apple’s slavish and justified obsession with design, if everyone else was as fanatical about aesthetics we’d certainly live in a far better looking world but also one where fewer people are prevented rather than enabled by technology. With the OS being a scaled up version of the one millions are familiar with on the iPhone and Touch again Apple seem to have got it about as right as we can justifiably expect. And who can argue with the apparent two million units already shipped, although I wonder how many of these are already existing iPhone, iMac or Macbook owners. Based on the limited and statistically unsupportable straw poll I’ve carried out it’s 100%.
The problem as I see it isn’t the device at all but Cupertino’s approach to what goes on it and how you’re forced into an Apple playground where like Number Six you know something isn’t quite right but not sure what it is. Let’s take the promising Apple iPad Dock Connector to VGA Adapter as an example. Now you could justifiably have concluded as I did that if I was going to do a presentation why not take take an iPad instead. Ah but wait. It doesn’t work like a normal VGA adaptor which simply duplicates the screen onto a larger monitor, it only displays applications or particular content Apple allows to travel down the short £25 white cable. And let’s not get into the vice like grip on the developer community and the control over any content Apple deem unsuitable.
Oh well the £500 I don’t have will now not be spend on the Canon 550D I hadn’t intended of purchasing instead.