Tuesday, 7 September 2010

I love my iPad, except...

I’ve been an iPad user for a month now thanks to my partner-in-life paying attention to those not-so-subtle birthday present hints. It’s my first ever Apple product as I really dislike “lifestyle” products – I want to use technology, not make some kind of statement with it. But as I struggled to find a place for my laptop on the Saturday-morning breakfast table, the iPad seemed a perfect solution. Well almost. Ideally I’d like to have The Irish Times weekend edition in my hands in dead-tree format but I’m in Canada, not Ireland, so the online version it has to be.

And thus far the iPad has worked out really well. The screen is quite beautiful and the browsing experience is slick and responsive. The mechanicals seem tough, the battery lasts for ages and the software has been 100% reliable. But it’s not quite perfect.
  • It’s heavy, noticeably so after 20 minutes in your hands when it starts to feel quite awkward. There's no obvious "right way" to hold it - unlike a laptop, which sits, obviously, on your lap. It needs a stand.
  • It doesn’t cope well with buttery fingers. I never realised how wonderfully matched are newspapers and hot buttered toast, but things get a bit more slippery with a touch screen.
  • The lack of multi-tasking in the OS means you have to open the email application to check for new emails, which is not very slick at all.
  • It has a magnetic attraction for kids: my 2-year-old loves to grab hold of it, demanding to see Hi-5 on YouTube. There's something about the iPad that just says "pick me up"; the laptop doesn't have the same effect even if little Philou loves banging on on the keyboard. So I can’t leave the iPad just lying around...
But all in all I'm well pleased with it. So what does that say about me?

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