Over the past week, technology blogs have been buzzing with rumors, “leakages’, expectations of the new product and every single bit of information or press from Apple or its close counterparts that was in any way slightly revealing of what Apple was going to produce in today’s keynote speech.
Even so, not much was known. There were guesses on names – ranging from iSlate, iTablet, Tablet and more; which wasn’t easy either because Apple were so secretive, they didn’t even buy a domain name related to the product in advance. Even now iPad.com is still registered to some Martine Bejasa. Some ‘leaked’ photos made their way to techcrunch, which turns out were fakes.
As the global recession recedes in baby steps, the makers of iPhone, iPod and the Mac computer have something to dazzle the world with. Just what is the iPod? I mean iPad?(Bad time to be a Midwestern US gadget shopper from UK, eh?)
Well the iPad is a 9”, multitouch screen device that is tailor made for e-books, photo sharing, web browsing, video games playing and such end user entertainment functionalities. While its computing ability is somewhere between a laptop and a smart phone, it is created to support all iPhone applications from the app store.
Some versions of the device come with both Wi-Fi and 3G access. The 3G capability is as a result of a joint venture with AT&T. Some however believe this is not such great news since the company has not been able to cope with the 3G data usage of the iPhone. Users will have both bandwidth and unlimited options for internet subscription.
The iPad which is also meant to be a reading device comes with the iBooks application and an iBooks store. It has partnered with some five publishers to provide the digital books. The first book available will cost about Ksh1200( US$15). During the launch, Martin Nisenholtz of the New York Times showed their own application for the iPad. During the presentation on iBooks, Delicious Monster founder Wil Shipley tweeted this: “No, Apple didn’t license iBooks from me. They just copied me. Ah well.” You might think this is a disgruntled ex-employee, but no. Apple actually hired Mike Matas, co-founder of Delicious Monstor, Lucas Newman and Tim Omernick all Delicous Monster former employees to work on the iPad. Apparently Apple didn’t contact him beforehand on the idea. Whether he is going to sue or not is still not clear. But he had this to say to the media:” …your children aren’t really yours. They have lives of their own. SO when your designs do change the world, you have to accept it. You have to say, ‘Ok, this was such a good idea, other people took it and ran away with it. I win!”
The iPad however does not come with support for the Flash technology. However Adobe(owner of Flash) stated ealier today on their blog that flash apps can easily be converted to iPad capable using Creative Suite 5(CS5). However applications will not initially take advantage of the iPad’s new screen resolution.
iPad comes without an SD card slot. However users can buy adapters for the SD card and microSD.
The initial price of the iPad is rather discouraging. But who knows, even the iPhone that now sells for US$99 started at US$599 in the USA. Here in Kenya they are still rather pricey. The starting price for the iPad is US$499.
Here is a video of iPad in action
Conclusion: Well, iThink, it’s awesome!
PS: I initially wrote this article on MsWord so I had to add the word iPad to the dictionary to avoid the spelling error notifications.Ha!