iPad: Hits and Misses

Less than a week after the iPad was launched, all technology magazines and websites are buzzing with articles and discussions on the new device. In fact, less than a day after it was launched, there are already puns and spoof videos circulating around.

So, what really is up with the iPad? Is the latest Apple product simply an enlarged iPhone? Or is there more to it? FreshGrads highlights the hits and misses of the long-awaited iPad.


Weight: 1kg
Interface: 1024x768
Processor: 1GHz Apple A4 Chip
Storage sizes: 16, 32 or 64GB flash
Connectivity: 802.11n Wi-Fi, 3G, Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR


Main Hits

The iPad looks like a big iPhone with an aluminum shell: The trademark home button as on its smaller buddy, and a stunning touch-screen display interface at 1024x768. As such, the device also doubles up as a Kindle or may even outdo it. The visuals are as near as you can get to reading an e-book as if it is real, such as flipping pages with your fingers on the touch screen.

And better. The iPad is designed with a convex back, which means that it feels slimmer than it actually is, as you can easily hold the slimmer curved edges, just like your iPhone. Again, as with the iPhone, the QWERTY keyboard can be accessed landscape or upright but this time, almost in the size of a typical physical keyboard. Yet for those who still prefer the tangible, there is going to be a keyboard dock accessory.

Also, meant for long hours, what users will really like about the iPad is its 10-hour battery life. There is finally no need to lug around that heavy charger or extension plug anymore.

Lastly, it seems like the iPad will be priced quite reasonably. In U.S., it starts from US$499 for the smallest storage size 16GB model and without 3G.

Main Misses

Here comes the BUT. The biggest boo - also why the device wasn't as well-received as expected - is that users will not be able to multitask on it. Yes, there is no multitasking on the iPhone as well. Then again, here we are looking at a device that Steve Jobs said would beat the Net Book hands down but yet it does not match up to the one main function that users are most concerned with.

The next big miss will most probably be that the iPad will not be able to replace even the iPhone. There is no camera (in turn, no video conferencing), no text messaging function, and suchlike, which brings it to the grounds of neither-here-nor-there. It is not good enough to replace your iPhone nor is it adequate to replace your laptop. And why would one want to bring around a third device with overlapping functions then?

And of course… there could have been other names than iPad, which brought on lots of period-related jokes. For example, the iSlate would've been a much better choice.  

All in all, it was a case of oversized expectations as a result of what Apple has previously done such as its groundbreaking display technology and the iPhone's gaming capabilities, as well as Apple marketing it to be their "most advanced technology in a magical and revolutionary device at an unbelievable price".

Hence, most who would have expected it to be an all-in-one revolutionary tech tool - bigger iPhone with laptop capabilities on top of having a better display interface as an e-reader - are now severely let down. Sure, it is better in many aspects but also lacking in some essential aspects. It is nothing new and innovative, and it definitely does not replace either your iPhone (no calling functions) or your laptop (no multi-tasking functions), earning it no place in your "Need" list.

However, patience may pay off here. The iPad may now be bigger iPhone with less functions but it shows much promise.

Related links: Wired review, Engadget review

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