The geek brigade have pretty roundly condemned the iPad (that picture from here). I can’t help but think that they might be missing the point – like this guy suggests – the iPad isn’t an awesomely powerful tool for geekiness. It’s an e-reader with a built in media player.

Today a Kindle 2 is $289 on Amazon.com. A Kindle DX with a 9.7″ screen is $489. For $10 more for an iPad I get:

-8x the storage
-a color screen
-a touch screen
-a touch OS
-a better web browser
-a better media player (iTunes)
-works on my home/work/plane wifi network
-the ability to download apps that do other things like play Scrabble and do Crosswords

Sure, it could have been so much better. Apple could have packed in the features. But then the price just couldn’t have compared with that of the Kindle. Being a recent convert to the Apple Fanboy Club I am going to put my faith in Steve Jobs to deliver a workable product rather than all the Internet critics who apparently know (and expect) better…


AndrewFinden says:

Am I correct in thinking that it doesn't use the e-ink technology that the Kindle uses (and which makes reading less tiring)?

Leah says:

I've heard the screen on the iPad isn't actually much good for e-reading… so it fails even at its primary purpose.

Even if it is meant to be an e-reader and only that, it should at least have standard ports and the ability to multi-task.

Stuart Heath says:

It’s all about the ecosystem. I don’t want one yet because I can’t yet see how it can help me. Give app developers six months, though, and I can see how it’ll be an unmatchable proposition for a whole bunch of people.

Joel says:

It seems to me that apple are doing their usual trick. They release a product that people buy because it's shiney, new and mostly functional but missing a few key elements. Then when the new version comes out in 12 months time with all the functions that the first one should have had, everyone who bought the first one goes out and buys the new one as well. The same thing happened with the iPhone and then the 3GS. The original was unable to send MMS messages, couldn't copy and paste and had no GPS; functions that should be standard on todays smart phone. I can't imagine that the people at apple just forgot to put in these functions – it was quite deliberate so that everyone buys the new one. The same will happen with the iPad.

Amy says:

For all that it is really annoying about it not having USB etc, I've survived just fine without that for my iphone which I now couldn't do without. And as my sister has pointed out, this machine would be absolutely fantastic for university study – if you can buy all your textbooks as ebooks as well as use a word processor for notes all on the same machine, instead of carting 5 massive textbooks around…

The Kindle may have better readability but I don't think I can support Amazon given their appalling treatment of publishers and writers (and once they have the dominant market share, readers as well).

Goannatree says:

I am still not concerned by the readability of any of the e-readers. I spend hours reading and until i find a better way to read .pdf i will have to continue to kill trees. My solution thus far has been a 20" monitor!
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Goannatree says:

i'm not convinced….concerned I definitely am!
My recent post Observing Lent