Christopher Bazin - Developer and Analyst

Christopher Bazin – USC Grad Student/Webmaster/Sprinkle-Donut Hunter, exploring the technical world and learning how to communicate!

iPad – Looks good, tastes O.K.

Can you love it?

This week our office purchased an iPad for research purposes. By that I mean that we are thinking of using them for a high-tech presence in meetings. I am, of course, excited because it does look beautiful and it gives me a chance to test and play. There is no doubt that the clarity and usability of the device is divine. However, what exactly does it do and what role does it play?

I know you are probably exhausted by the number of reviews there have been on the iPad and the last thing you want to do is read another one.  In fact I am certain that the only people that will read this posting are my friends that I send this link directly to.  Keeping all that in mind, I am going to keep this brief and to the point.

I can sum up my iPad experience with this: Imagine you are at a bakery counter (I know, a food analogy by Christopher? Shocking!) and you see the most beautiful slice of cake. It has gorgeous mounds of icing, sprinkles and what appears to be a filling that only could be made in heaven.  Nothing could stop you from buying that slice of cake.

Now you are at home. You have gingerly carried the cake being careful not to damage it.  You unwrap it and take a moment to admire it before you take that first bite.  Then you strategically dig your fork into the piece to get just the right amount of icing and cake combo so your first taste will be the equivalent of you personally witnessing a puppy saying “i wuv wu.” Then you take your first bite. You wait. Then you realize: wow this just tastes like cake.

After day two with the iPad, I am still impressed by its beauty and versatility but, for me, not as marvelous as I thought it would be.  Most apps are still not available for the iPad. Or, and here is a good example, you go looking for something like a Facebook app then you realize there is no app for it. Then five minutes later, you have a eureka moment that reminds you that you can just use the browser since it is a web-based application. [I did that a few times] There are a number of free apps, but they are just not that appealing.

One shocking thing you see when you first unwrap the iPad is that the package does NOT come with any case.  Nothing.  Nothing to protect it or carry it in, even a cheap-o vinyl sleeve.  I thought that was strange. Especially when accessories for the iPad are virtually unavailable by retailers.

Ok, so what is good about the iPad? The email is pretty cool (same as iPhone) and watching a movie on it is very cool (not so easy if you don’t know how to rip down to iPad format). Surfing the web is a dream – so easy, intuitive and convenient. Reading books on it is clear, bright and I couldn’t imagine any other digital reader.

So does Flash support matter?  HELL YES.  I am so very disappointed [I even underlined 'very'] that Flash isn’t supported. I went to expecting to be directed to iPad compatible videos and I have still been unable to view any content. My friends who put videos into their Facebook feeds are also un-viewable. [insert sad face] This sucks.

Can I use it to take notes and is it easy to type on? If you are a “hunt and pecker” [that was just fun to say] then you will no doubt find it easy. However, if you have been trained in the slightest you will find this difficult to type on since the keyboard is just not quite spaced correctly.

Let’s face it, it is gorgeous. But you have to be a person who spends MOST of their time on the web consuming reading material (online news, blogs, etc.). Let’s re-interate: it is not a laptop.  We know this and we have been told this but it doesn’t mean we don’t expect more from this device.  I will say I am proud of Apple being the first to test the waters and they have set the bar high.  But clearly not high enough. Bring on the competition!

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One Response to “iPad – Looks good, tastes O.K.”
  1. Ramon says:

    Great review, Christopher. You forgot to mention one huge problem with you having an iPad. It keeps you from making delicious cupcakes in the kitchen. Now, get to work.

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