So I have been using the iPad for around two weeks now and I thought I would throw my two cents in on how I have found the experience. I will highlight both the positives and negatives that I have found as well as outlining the uses I have found for the device.
Fingerprints – obviously the iPad is meant to be touched, that’s the idea, but the speed that the screen picks ip fingerprints is insane. I do not suffer with OCD fortunately, but if you do – even mildly, do not buy this device as you will constantly be wiping and cleaning the screen.
No iOS4 – when the iPad was released iOS4 was not yet announced, however it is now in the wild and I have been using it longer than I have had my iPad which means I have gotten used to multi-tasking (limited in number of apps that support it but growing all the time), unified inbox and folders. These things are even more notable by their absence on the iPad due to its larger size and speed, which allow it to be used in more environments and for longer than iPhone.
I can only assume that the delay for iPad OS update to fall is that the updates will now be .1 apart for iPhone and iPad, so iPad will be iOS4.1, then iPhone 4.2 etc etc due to their feature differences.
App Developers – If an app developer has an app in the iPhone App Store that is fantastic, and they port it to iPad simply by making a few minor changes and up-scaling it, adding HD to the title and adding £3 to the price they are not getting my hard earned cash. I do however understand that if a developer thinks outside of the box and does something a lot better with their iPad app then I may upgrade.
I can’t understand why many app developers will not enable their apps to be cross platform for the one cost AND offer a better (different) experience with a new app. Offer the choice boys and girls, if your app is worthy people will pay.
The Portability – As I read on many blogs before my purchase, the iPad is heavier than you would have first thought, however it is a reassuring weight, and you are very unlikely to be using this device with one hand standing up anyway. The iPad is very portable, so much so that I rarely leave the house without it now, it simply comes with me in the car just in case. The partner can use it whilst I am driving, the kids can play games and watch videos in the back, everyone gets use out of this device.
The Speed – The speed of the iPad is so much quicker than the iPhone (3GS admittedly), and apps just seem to run better and smoother. This is also helping app developers build more advanced applications, as the new hardware can handle them.
The Battery – The battery has only run out on me once, when I let it to ‘cycle’ the battery, and then I had to leave it on for two days, using it normally in-between. I feel that the 10 hour battery life might actually be an understatement for once from a technology company.
The Screen – Despite the drawbacks of the screen (fingerprints) it is also the best feature of this device, in fact it is the device! Everything just feels natural, touching it. The Internet, Books, Video & Apps, you will feel completely at home touching and tapping your way through. The size of the screen is also critical, too small and it becomes a big iPhone, too big it becomes less portable. I feel apple have got it just right with the screen size of the iPad, and that many devices will follow suit with very similar sizes, and bevels.
So far during my time with the iPad I have been off work, whilst I move jobs, only returning three days ago, so my business uses have been quite limited, although there are small parts outside of work that are useful too.
Web Browsing – This has been my key use so far along with email. I have my iMac sitting in the living room but feel very anti-social when using it just to browse the web whilst the rest of the family socialise, and interact together. They understand when I use it for development work, or link building or project management but for the basics I do tend to get a few looks of discontent. The iPad has changed this, I can now sit with the family and continue to interact with them socially whist still doing some casual browsing or research, the same is true of…
Email – Most emails that are received out of work hours are either personal or non-urgent. These type of emails may require a quick one or two line reply, iPad is perfect for this, whilst still interacting with the family. I can manage my emails, prioritising them for the next day if necessary or simply replying.
ToDo – ToDo is my favourite iPad app. It manages all of my projects, to-do lists, syncs wirelessly with ToodleDo so I can manage my lists on iPhone, iPad, iMac & PC. So simple to use, it is simply a must have app for iPad.
The uses for me are simply basic standard personal uses, but now I have started my new job I foresee that the iPad will become a highly integrated part of my business day. Worth the money? If you travel quite a bit, don’t have a laptop (like me) and have a business use for it then go for it, if not, then still go for it, you will not regret it.