Today, Apple announced their newest product line: the iPad tablet computer. Marketed as a middle ground between the iPhone and a laptop (does anyone outside of the industry actually call them “notebooks” in casual conversation?), it’s essentially an iPhone with a 10″ screen.
I’m not quite as excited as you might expect me to be.
It’s beautiful, yes. And the price point is better than the iPhone pricing structure when it first came out: the 16 GB version starts at $499. And of course, for an Apple enthusiast like me, there’s the “new toy” factor. But if I had both a MacBook and an iPad, when would I choose the iPad instead of the MacBook?
Quick trips, perhaps, when I want to be able to watch movies, write emails, etc. on a plane. The iPad will be slightly smaller and lighter than a laptop, so there’s an extra portability factor without the crazy expense of the MacBook Air. The big question becomes, is it worth paying $500 or more for the slight improvement in convenience?
I see the value of this being primarily for someone that doesn’t have a laptop that they adore today. I definitely see the allure of a desktop user purchasing this rather than a laptop, if the desktop they have is functional and satisfactory and they’re simply looking for a portable option.
I also see the appeal for people who are fond of eBooks. This has the potential to be a major competitor for the Kindle. I heard on the news today (and haven’t validated it) that Amazon.com sold more eBooks than paper books… If that’s true, or even if it’s not frankly, there’s a big market for eBooks, and Apple stands on the verge of grabbing ahold of it.
And of course, I see the appeal for someone who has to wait in line on Day One to purchase the newest Apple product. Someone like me. So wish me luck in resisting an expensive toy that I truly don’t need.
Here are some photos that tempt me, though:
Now, I know a lot of my friends are technology gurus. Here’s your chance, people! Reply below with your thoughts about the viability of this product.