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Apple iPad: All You Need To Know

January 27, 2010 Leave a comment

After months (more like years) of speculation and countless rumors, Apple’s fabled tablet has finally been unveiled.  The device was announced earlier today by Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs at a press event held at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, CA.

Here is a full round-up of all the news from the event.

The device is known as: iPad

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Brief Overview:

Steve Jobs, and others, have spoken in the past about the necessity to have an “in between” device other than the netbook that would essentially fill the void between your smart phone and your personal computer.

I believe we have seen Jobs’ answer to that dilemma.

The device itself sits at with a 9.7-inch multi-touch screen, 16 to 64 GB of memory, custom iPhone OS with the ability to run iPhone apps and iPad specific apps, play HD video, act as an ebook reader, sync with your Mac (basically like a huge, awesome iPod Touch).  This device is sporting some major hardware and software.

There have been a lot of different price ranges thrown out over the past few months, but the one that (I believe) was seen the most was $1,000- I personally didn’t think that this was going to be the case.  There is a clear price range missing from Apple’s line-up of good and Jobs knows this.  Pricing starts at $499:


Specs:

– SCREEN: 9.7-inch IPS LCD screen. The LCD provides the backlighting, but most of the technology is IPS, or In-plane switching. This gives it a stronger viewing angle than most screens.

– RESOLUTION: 1024×757 pixels

– SIZE: 0.5 inches thin.

– DIMENSIONS: 9.5 inches x 7.5 inches x 0.5 inches

– WEIGHT: 1.5 pounds (1.6 pounds for 3G)

– CHIP: 1 GHz Apple A4 chip. They went in-house instead of going to Intel.

– MEMORY: Three models with 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB solid state hard drives.

– INCLUSIONS: Accelerometer, Microphone, 30-pin connector, Compass, full capacitive multi-touch,Bluetooth 2.1, 802.11n Wi-Fi, 3G access on higher-end models

– BATTERY LIFE: 10 hours at full blast. On standby, it will last over a month.  [mashable.com]

iPad Interface:

Jobs and the rest of the execs at Apple are playing the “you are already familiar” card big time with the upgraded iPhone OS being used.  It is essentially a huge iPhone/iPod Touch when it comes to the interface.  Once you pick it up- you should have no problems moving throughout the device.  I (somewhat) like this.  Simply because it is truly easy to pick up an iPhone and learn how to do it.  I feel that they were betting on this when they chose this OS.

Applications play a huge role in the iPad. All iPhone/iPod Touch apps will work with the iPad and with the release of the iPad SDK today, devs will have the chance to create iPad specific applications.

One of the more important aspects of the iPad is the keyboard.  The keyboard basically looks like a big iPhone keyboard.  I don’t really have a problem with this, but I do feel that this should have been taken into consideration:

Lex Lareo

Connecting with the iPad:

The iPad comes in two different models.  One has the good ol’ standby Wi-Fi and the other has Wi-Fi and 3G connectivity.  The 3G enabled model will cost you $130 more.

The one thing that I was worried about when there was supposedly going to be 3G on this tablet…and that was having to sign a contract with a service carrier.  Apple avoided this disaster by going with a No Contract data plan from AT&T (although AT&T is ROUGH) $14.99 for 250MB or $29.99 for Unlimited Data.

TV, Movies, and Video:

From looking at the Keynote and seeing all the photos from the event, it is clear to see that the picture/video on the iPad is amazing.  Down right pretty.  The video interface is the same as the iPhone.  There is an iTunes-esque set up to search and purchase movies and TV shows.

One of my favorite aspects of the iPad is going to have to be the ESPN app that will allow you to get THROUGHLY involved in your favorite games and watch live TV.

Reports are saying that this device is not a widescreen device and can cause some frustrations, but I think this is a preference sort of issue that Apple may fix later.


EBook and Publishing Savior:

Now many of you might think that using the word “Savior” in regards to the publishing world is a little bit much, but I think that this is just what it needs.

Readers today aren’t going to the stands and picking up the latest issue of any magazine- Creating a new type of DIGITAL magazine that is more interactive than a simple browser page is essential…and I think that Apple is paving the way for this.

iBooks, announced today at the iPad event, is a new native application for iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad that allows you to browse, download and read e-books. At launch, five book publishers will have publications on iBooks: Penguin, Simon and Schuster, HarperCollins, Macmillian and Hachette. Left off the list is McGraw-Hill, whose CEO accidentally spilled the beans on the tablet a day too early. We think it’s possible that Apple handed retribution to McGraw-Hill for the leak, although you’ll likely see its books on the iPad at some point.  [mashable.com]

I know a few people that feel that the iPad, as an ebook reader, is going to fail simply because you can’t dim the backlight of the iPad (their wittle eyes can’t take itttt)- I personally don’t think it is a problem, but thats because I am pretty much used to looking at a bright backlight screen alllll day (and I am DEFINITELY OK with that 🙂 )

Getting The Job Done:

Apple has created an iPad version of iWork.  I like that Apple has attempted to make their productivity and work applications more accessible to users, but my only problem with it would have to be input.  Using the iPad keyboard might be a little difficult if you have a lot of work to do.

Here are the details regarding the iWork app for the iPad [via mashable.com]:

A rundown of the key features and applications in iWork for the iPad:

– Keynote: Apple’s flagship presentation software has gotten an overhaul that allows you to easily view and add slides using the touchscreen interface. You can made edits, browse through slides and more.

– Pages: Word processing on the iPad goes through Pages, which allows you to type more effectively without a physical keyboard and provides touch-based formatting options. For example, dragging images on a page is easy since there’s auto-wrap.

– Numbers: Apple’s spreadsheet feature lets you design data cells and spreadsheets with the multi-touch interface.

– Cost: It costs $9.99 for each app in the app store.

When Can I Get One?:

Jobs didn’t state a specific date on when you can get your little hands on one of the iPads but he did say that:

Wi-Fi only version ships in 60 days

Wi-Fi and 3G version ships in 90 days

You can do the math.

Accessories and Attachments:

Apple loves accessories and it seems that they already have a few set to release with the iPad:

Dock/Physical Keyboard:

Leather Case/Kickstand:

USB, SD, Dock, and Various Cords:

What the iPad SHOULD have had:

  • USB Port (without attachments)
  • Front Facing Camera (or a camera in general)
  • Multitasking, multitasking, multitasking
  • HDMI Port
  • Flash Support
  • I’m sure there are more

Overall:

I feel that Apple has a winner on their hands- Of course, the first generation of any product will have its problems (shoulda, coulda, woulda), but I still believe it will be successful

I think that tablet interface is the future of personal computing and I believe Apple took the first big steps to making that future obtainable.

What do you think?

Many thanks to Gizmodo, Engadget, gdgt, Mashable, and others for providing readers with their Live Blogs of the Apple Event!

2010 CES Daily Round-Up: Press Edition, January 5th

January 5, 2010 Leave a comment

With CES right around the corner (January 7-10) and with all the press events going on right now, I thought I would give a daily round-up of all that went down.

Today, January 5th, has been a fairly quiet one, but we have already seen some interesting products/concepts!  Here is a rundown on what we have seen thus far:

-Lenovo IdeaPad U1 Hybrid Hands-On

-3D TV is going to be HUGE at CES- ESPN has already set a date for when they will be airing a 3D World Cup.

-Skype HD: Skype directly through your LG or Panasonic TV

-ASUS has a slew of new netbooks, laptops, and desktops- Unveiled at their press event

-Spring Design Alex dual-screen, Android based e-reader

That was about it for today’s CES news- I’m sure that there were a few things that I may have missed, but I will do my best to catch any and all that comes out of CES this week

On a different, but somewhat similar note;

Read more…