iPad… I meh

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After much ado, the iPad has landed.

Firstly, let me say what an unfortunate name they’ve chosen. I can see where Apple was going — after iPod and iPhone, iPad was the next logical choice. But with iTampon as the second biggest trending topic on Twitter (earlier today), one wonders if they’ve signed up for endless ridicule.

However, according to Apple’s Steve Jobs, the jokes and teasing were expected and they’re sure people will get over them.

“You forget, but they made fun of iPod name when it came out,” he said. “What matters is the product and what it means to consumers.”

While the iPhone and iPod were both revolutionary, Apple has had its share of near (and not so near) misses. Remember Apple TV and the Rokr? But will the iPad be one too? Will we get past the jokes?

The iPad is supposed to fill the gap between smartphones and laptops; sadly it has fewer features. And from where I’m sitting, there aren’t enough differences between the iPad and the iPhone to spark my interest. I have an iPhone and a Macbook but I can’t see myself needing, nor wanting, one … not just yet.

I want more. I want a camera. I want a USB plug. I want to be able to plug it into my TV. And I definitely want it to be able to multi-task.

That said, there’s plenty to like about the iPad including the multi touch screen. On top of that the price is impressive, the keyboard dock is pretty cool, it’s light, has a big screen and iWork looks like a great application. I particularly like the interface for the new calendar. This really is a glimpse into the future.

It’s being heralded as a way to save the publishing industry. How? iBook will make a dent in Amazon but without the use of E-Ink or free 3G, I doubt it will eclipse Kindle. More importantly how will it affect the newspaper and magazine industries? The business models are still problematic and I doubt a device will solve it.

I don’t think the iPad effect will be immediate. Rather it will probably be a slow burn (i.e. 5 years). I do like where the iPad is headed, further simplifying devices. However, I think I will happily wait for another version with more features.

Although it’s been introduced to fill the gap between smartphones and computers, I think the iPad (and similar versions) will eventually nudge out computers, once and for all.

What will this mean for communicators? It’s a case of wait and see. All I know for sure is I’m looking forward to the journey.

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