Sunday, February 13, 2011

The Vice of the Device

When Apple introduced the iPad I shrugged. Another gadget intended to glue your eyes to a screen all day, as if I need any more of that. In my observation, it’s simply another overpriced gadget that will run your life I thought, if you allow it. Most seem to allow it.

It has taken every bit of will power on my behalf to resist buying an iPhone. I have seen way too many individuals become enslaved by that thing. Maybe this year when my old contract expires I will entertain the notion. Maybe. Until then my camera will take photos, my phone will continue to make the phone calls and my business computer will suffice for getting work done, although I will be upgrading it this year.

When my son Andy showed up at Christmas he had his own iPad. It was impressive but not enough to interest me. But the wife went nuts for the pad once she saw what it did and how ‘cute’ it was. Too late, I already bought a Christmas gift.

The iPad is the perfect computer for her. Up until the present she used my laptop to do all her personal computing needs, most of which is email, shopping on the web, playing card games and majong.

I had considered getting her an Apple Macbook but they are a bit too pricey and overkill. The Mac Mini was another option we considered but it would be anchored at a desk or nook. No portability. The iPhone is small. She isn’t too crazy about one of those.

She loves to read books and magazines. She reads a lot. One feature that drew my attention to the iPad was the book, magazine and newspaper downloads available with full color photos. The Kindle and other book reader devices cannot compare because of their obvious limitations. They may be less expensive you get what you pay for.

With my seven year old laptop about to gag and with her birthday coming up I had found the iPad to be the gift of all gifts (she’s always been easy to please).

The gift of an iPad was a home run.

Try as one may, a laptop is portable but nothing like this. She can use it on the couch, in a chair, in bed, in the kitchen and even on the toilet if the need arises when nature calls.

The pad can be placed in the kitchen near the cook space to display recipes. The kids bought a folder/holder protective case. Nice.

We have a wireless network in the home so it would have been excessive to choose the 3G AT&T capability for another $125 plus monthly data charges with all the wifi available. It will be used primarily in the home.

So far she has been glued to the damn thing, as expected. Mission accomplished.

The iPad is not for me personally. If a ‘device’ cannot instantly crunch at least 1gb of imaging data in a Photoshop file with over 100 layers then I have no use for it. For the others who do not need a power monster with a huge display to get work done then the iPad is one hell of a device for most personal needs.

I am not one to be dazzled by the latest technology. Call me jaded. But after a spending a few days seeing what an iPad can do I am very, very impressed.


Carl from Chicago said...

The iPad has been a monster hit with my significant other too. She reads on it all the time and plays Angry Birds. We did get the 3G option and when we travel we use it as a GPS as well. I haven't succumbed yet and am trying to be a hold out for as long as possible.

Dan from Madison said...

Interesting review. How does she find typing on it? I have big mitts (can palm a basketball) and wonder how that would work.

I am going to ride this crappy laptop until it dies, as I am ever amused at how this thing, which I bought six years ago for $300 is still working. But when it dies, I will most likely get a pad like device. I only use this for websurfing anyways so the pad types will be perfect.

I also hope that competitors come out with alternatives but most I have heard aren't even close to the ipad.

Terry from Crown Point said...

Phones come with cameras, why don't cameras come with phones? I often perplex peeps by turning on my camera (extending the lens) and act like I'm talking into it as if it is a phone. Give it a try, it's a stitch to watch their reaction.

Gerry from Valpo said...

Typing on it is a lot easier than 'texting' on any cell phone. It's very fast and the display is brilliant. She's hooked.

Jonathan said...

I bought an iPod Touch 4G before an overseas trip because I needed a way to keep up with blogging and email and I don't have a laptop. It was the best 200 bucks I've ever spent. It does almost everything I need, including serving as a phone via Skype.