Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Ipad, where does it fit in?

Apple have launched the Ipad now for some time and everybody is quick to jump on the band wagon of pre ordering the tablet or indeed purchasing one from the states. I did not get my hands on one nor do I intend to even purchase one, this is not a review, like most people I'm just starting to get sick of all the hype. I think that the tablet format has been tried and failed a variety of times due to one major problem; we do not have a practical use for it other than a new gadget to show off.

It is not a replacement for a desktop computer or laptop, however a good notepad is smaller, costs half the price and does a lot more functions. With a notepad you are free to choose from an abundance of Linux distros or even build your own if that is your pleasure. There is also the added bonus that the vast majority of apps are free and open source.

It may play video, music and display ebooks well but it is too big and costly to replace our day to day portable media devices, this is not an ideal fit in your pocket, unless you wear parachute pants. I think we need a defining use and selling point otherwise the ipad and all the others will die off and go down as an expensive gadget gathering dust in most peoples drawers and cupboards.

Even the some of my more privaleged pupils who have got their hands on one via wealthy parents are admitting that it seems a bit of a pointless toy, after the initial excitement it is now sitting on their bedside tables. I personally don’t see where they fit in, not a PC replacement, notepads are more cost effective and have more actions and uses. Too big for media devices, I think they will vanish into obscurity within the next couple of years.

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