One Diver’s Perspective.

Scuba, Photography and Scandal

iPad, Just Because

Well, a lot of people are blogging about the “magical” iPad, many seeming to have a deep-seated hate toward the product, possibly over-reacting to other people’s “irrational” love of something they’ve yet to experience.  So, I thought I would throw my two cents in, to help balance things out a bit.

Many people are critical of the device because it is “nothing more than an oversized iPod Touch.”  Well, that is not quite true, since it sports a speedier processor, for one thing.  And don’t we all pay for larger screen real estate, either in the size of our monitors or the size of our televisions?  It would seem to me that a “handheld” device that is somewhat larger than an iPod Touch would certainly seem to be worth a little extra money to some people, without labeling those poor souls as “zombies” or “fanboyz”

Indeed, many people who have experienced an iPod Touch think the device is magical.  It responds to the touch unlike any other device they have held, and it lets them so so many things they never thought of doing before, like playing games or watching a television program while waiting for an appointment at the DMV or the Doctor.  So, again, it seems perfectly logical to want a “bigger version” in order to improve the web-browsing experience, the game playing experience, and the e-book reading experience.

Could the device be improved? Absolutely. Is it “evil” because it forces  you to use a free “App” to play YouTube videos and may otherwise make “flash content” inaccessible? I suppose if there was flash content I wanted to see, and Apple was “censoring” it for no other reason than they do not want the iPad used to view porn, I might be upset.  But, then again, I would more likely simply not buy the product rather than crusade against it as so many people are apt to do.

I prefer to happily believe that the iPad will “deliver” and by that, I mean it will be an elegant way to get the news, read a book, surf the web and view and respond to e-mail, all from the comfort of my couch.  By elegant, I mean, an intuitive touch-screen interface that is pleasing to use, because it was designed to be used by fingers so the icons are not tiny, the keyboard usable, and the weight not too much to bear.

Is it “too much” to spend on such a device?  Clearly, that depends upon one’s disposable income.  Presumably, if the price were $19.99, people would not be complaining nearly so much.  But, starting at $499, well, gosh, that is a lot more money than someone may be willing to spend on an “accessory device” or “MCD” (mobile computing device), and if they are going to spend that much they want to get more.  The beauty of it is, they don’t have to buy — the strangeness of it is, they feel the need to criticize.  I cannot help but wonder if there is a bit if i-Envy going on.

Sure, we all like to feel superior and more intelligent than the rest of the world, and it is easy to criticize people who have enough money to spend $499 more on a product they have not seen, and which nobody they know has seen.  But, if it were $19.99 you can bet whatever you like that these same people would be lining up to buy the product.  So, really, what we are talking about here are a bunch of people who are too poor to buy what they really want to own, or people who just wish to be critical of other people and their ideas and find it easier to express negative views than to keep silent.

I appreciate that many of these people are “just trying to be helpful” in explaining all of the shortcomings of the product’s technical feature-set, I really do. I look forward to a product that has a video camera built in, so that it can be used for video-chat and video conference calls.  But, whether that is an “option” or a built-in feature, it will cost money, and presumably Apple wanted to create a product at a price point that did not allow such a feature at the prices.  Or, perhaps, Apple simply wanted to grab the attention, sell a few million units, and then “upgrade” in version 2, to include the most talked about features that are missing.

The point is, I do not care, nor take it personally, that Apple would choose to do its market research by selling a device that is “missing” features.  I’ll either buy an iPad or I won’t, based on whether I believe it will make me happy enough to part with my money.  I will not be “angry” at the Company for attempting to sell me something I think is inferior, nor will I feel the need to criticize others who are “happy” that the company is selling a giant iPad at a cost which is unduly high.  I am sympathetic to those that want the device but cannot afford it.  It is always frustrating to be unable to buy something that you want, and that you see others enjoying.  I am not sympathetic to those people who just feel the need to dump on the product or the people buying it, however, because such views are truly mean spirited.

Finally, I respect and appreciate all of the comedy and graphic design work that has gone into making fun of the iPad, and the comparisons between the iPad and a stone tablet.  But, that is humor. The reality, as we know, is that a stone tablet does not display photographs beautifully. A stone tablet does not let you listen to music, read a best-seller, order groceries and control your Sonos sound system, all from the comfort of your couch or bed.

Don’t Hate.

This is One Diver’s Perspective.


March 13, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | | 3 Comments