5 Viewpoints on Apple’s iPad

iPad Viewpoint 1 – the Gadgeterati Snub iPad

After much speculation, Apple’s iPad hit the Gadget Mindscape market with a thud. To say that the Gadgeterati did not like the iPad is, unfortunately for Apple, an understatement:
Gizmodo – 8 things about the iPad that sucks – No Thanks Apple
PCWorld – Apple’s iPad mistakes – so many
Engadget – On the iPad, Not Impressed
theRegister – Apples iPad is an iPhone without the phone
Silicon Alley Insider – Apple’s iPad is a Big Yawn

iPad Viewpoint 2 – Big iPod and iPhone Markets to Tap users from

But I liked the comment over at CNET

by dougbuglJanuary 27, 2010 1:24 PM PST the tablet computer started life in the late 80s and early 90s by Pen Computing called Pen Point. Head over to boycottnovell.com and you should find some interesting things about how Microsoft worked to put Pen Computing out of business because they would not use Windows. A spinoff from the Pen Point business was Apples Newton but it was a much smaller design and when the press said that Apple was dead because of Windows 95 and it almost happened, the Newton didn’t survive the cuts needed to keep Apple going. Palm Computing made the handheld tablet to norm but Microsoft once again felt that it must be based on Windows and if you don’t know, marketing programs made sure more Windows Pocket PCs were on store shelves than Palm devices. They did try again around 2000 with another large Windows based tablet but the bloat of Windows required alot of hardware so the devices were heavy, used too much power so they had short battery life, and they were expensive.The funny thing about Microsoft is, they keep failing because to them, Windows is the hammer and EVERYTHING looks like a nail. When you look out on the market over the past 20 years, the new things you see are not there because they look like something else. They are there because they are different and they were designed to make the most of what is available and what fits the design the best. Microsoft just can’t have a hit like the iPod ever because everything they do is somehow tied to Windows and the world will never become a place where everything must fit that rectangular shape, metaphorically speaking.

The 25 million iPhone users and 125 million iTunes account members are a good starting point for those who can easily and immediately see value in this device and feel right at home using it. Pricing it at $499 is brilliant and will probably result in 10s of millions sold this year as long as the battery life is as stated.

Now add to this a good chunk of the 6-10 million eReaders which will likely be sold this next year and Apple will likely pickup a big market  in its first year. And Apple has a way of quickly adjusting to market demands. Remember the iPad is fast, gorgeous screen, thin and well appointed (for extra bucks). But most important for Google and Microsoft, Apple has left so much missing in the iPad there is a lot of room to maneuver for both companies.

iPad Viewpoint 3 – Microsoft, Google Have Wiggle Room

Both Google and Microsoft must be breathing sighs of relief – they have plenty of wiggle-into-the-market room for their competing Universal Mobile Computing Devices. For example, Google’s Android and Chrome OS operating systems support multitasking right now, Flash and HTML fully, and a wider range of connectivity options. And because JavaScript, HTML and Flash are primary programming tools for ChromeOS, the number of immediately available developers is at least 10 times the number of iPhone/iPad developers. And with ever faster microchips plus flash-memory or SSD devices – whatever Google turns up with will be ultra-fast and likely ultra secure as well[Linux base OS]. The chinks for Google are full multi-touch+gestures; how much of Wifi Direct, Bluetooth/Blueray, WiDi, and other emerging connectivity options they choose to implement. But perhaps the biggest chink in the Google armor is the disastrous sales and support exhibited at the Google Store so far with the release of the Android phone. But as the mobile medium of contact and easy data exchange, Google has lots of opportunities.
Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer owes Steve Jobs a heartfelt – “Thank you, Thank you, Thank you”. First because Steve Jobs did the usual and lead the way with innovation allowing Redmond to pick up the cues and copy, copy, copy. But also because not Windows Mobile 7 but Windows itself has been given a reprieve. Big business is still not enthusiastic about adopting Windows 7 – and because it is 20-40% slower than their existing Windows XP apps, has the continuing disaster of IE as its browser of choice, represents a huge retraining/learning curve for users, and presents a high price in tight economic times among the most prominent reasons. But with a Windows 7 full multi-touch, high connectivity [especially to Exchange and Sharepoint], low price tablet/Netbook from HP [it will have to be $500 0r less], businesses might finally warm up to Windows 7. The contradiction is that Windows 7  barely fits with 2GB of memory and  alone is priced at $190 [at Amazon]for Windows 7 Home Premium [ closest counterpart to Windows XP in most shops] this price represents a huge chunk of the $500 price that iPad has set in the market for the Universal Mobile Computing Devices.

iPad Viewpoint 4 – Childrens Games, Another Market?

The NYTimes confirms what my friends says – the iPad is a perfect game. Having retired their iPod Touch to the kids[ both under 5] and bought iPhones my friends seem to confirm the NYTimes story. Kids love not just the point and touch gimmicks of the iPod but also some of its kids gaming apps that use music and stories.Nintendo’s CEO is aware of this and there is already a market for iPod Childrens games. This may be  an added enabler for the iPad buy decision – and not small.

iPad Viewpoint 5 – 1/2 way to being iPhone 4g

The LATimes confirmed that iPad has been cleared to use VoIP apps like Fring, iCall and Skype. With iPad’s built-in speaker and microphone these apps make the iPhone a very cheap telephone with the AT&T $30/month unlimited 3G connection plan. And now that Google Voice clears the iPhone [and presumably iPad barrier], a call to one Google Voice number can include the iPad. A bit bulky, but iPad becomes a serviceable phone too.

Summary

NYTimes David Pogue seems to have gotten the iPad just about right: “Like the iPhone, the iPad is really a vessel, a tool, a 1.5-pound sack of potential. It may become many things. It may change an industry or two, or it may not. It may introduce a new category — something between phone and laptop — or it may not. And anyone who claims to know what will happen will wind up looking like a fool. Now all iPhone OS 4.0 has to do is deliver multitasking – and voila Apple has delivered Sun’s vision, the Network computer … errr without Java. This tells a lot about JavaFx chances in the RIA market. It also ups my estimate for iPads  first year sales from teens of millions to tens of millions.

3 thoughts on “5 Viewpoints on Apple’s iPad”

  1. I believe the iPad and other tablets will be a fad, catering to a small market of gamers, students and users carrying not more than 1 other device on them at a time. I own a MacBook Air. It’s light, sits on your lap which is ideal for watching movies on a flight or in bed, and it does everything else the iPad does and more. And I think it’s in fact a lot easier to use than an iPad save for the touch-screen. I don’t know why Apple didn’t follow-up on developing the initial hype surrounding the MacBook Air’s launch; it usually does with all it’s other products. they should have. It’s got potential to beat all other devices bigger than an iPod. As for touch-screens, it could have been the next generation Air as this story proves: http://newsletters.businessweek.com/c.asp?822883&366bf4fb00cfe2d8&42

    1. Shaji-

      I agree with you – Apple has lost an opportunity by not bring an update to MacBook Air [and so Google with ChromeOS and Microsoft with HP-Courier have ample wiggle-into-the-market room]. But Steve Jobs in a post announcement meeting with staff at Cupertino promised lots more “A+” developments for the iPhone and Mac computer “this year”. So I am from Missouri and will wait to see. But I just bought 5 eBooks in the past month and now I am looking for a way to read them better than on my PC – the pages don;t fit the landscape layout of my notebook and even with the screen pumped up to maximum battery-emptying brightness the books are hard to read in daylighted window setting[give up on outdoors]. I suspect that Kindle was selling at 6-9Million annual rate – but a lot of those prospective users will now look at an iPad. And since a lot of my buddies Skype – with an iPad I could too. Hmmm – I think we should have a bet: this year the iPad sells 24M units. Whats your prediction? Loser buys a paperback or eBook of the winners choice.
      -Jack

  2. Great laptop!!!! Very nice features and nice to have 10-key number pad built in. The speaker volume issue seems to have been corrected.

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