Friday, July 23, 2010

iPad: Contrarians and Zealots

As I wrote in an article for AV Specialist (a magazine covering the Middle East and Africa) last month: Love it or hate it, the iPad defines a new device category, the tablet. Not PC, nor smart phone, it has burst onto the world stage bringing a little fun and magic in its wake. It’s affecting digital consumer patterns, but is it a game-changer, or just more hardware and clutter in our lives?

There are significant reasons why NOT to buy an iPad.

First, it’s redundant with your iPhone and laptop, according to UK’s Daily Telegraph. It doesn’t play Flash video, has no camera or USB port, and it doesn’t print! The list goes on.

But to iPad enthusiasts “it is the most amazing piece of consumer IT technology ever.” According to one email I received:

“The implications are astounding - high definition video on demand will replace TV; eBooks which will kill the printing industry; Skype access that will kill a regular phone service. The list is endless and frightening. THIS IS THE FUTURE. I bought her the 64 GB iPad and she reckons it's so intuitive that her 80-year old father has mastered it.

So who’s right?

The truth is, the iPad is new – a tablet form factor that has only been on the market since April. It is destined to be adopted globally and put to use in some creative and probably unexpected ways.


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