Monday, April 5, 2010


Will it be a success, failure, or something in between?

This past weekend Apple launched their much heralded and hyped IPAD. Is this Apple’s version of a Tablet PC? Not really. With the advent of the IPHONE, touch screen technology is on practically every Smartphone. As a result of this technology, Tablet PCs are supposed to be the next products to adapt this technology. They are called Tablets because they are supposed to be roughly the same size as a paper tablet/notebook. Tablet PCs have been used for about a decade, but the new technology is primed to spawn a new wave of tablets by making them capable of actually being the size of a tablet.. Just like the Netbooks that are taking the globe by storm, Tablet PCs are supposed to be the next “big thing”. Instead of carrying a bulky laptop, you are supposed to be able to carry these Tablets around into your business meeting. You can take notes, edit documents, send emails, etcetera, and do everything else that you can do on a computer, but through this tablet, all based-upon the touch screen. As with most of mainstream computer adaption, the tablet need to do something that has not been done before. You heard of the term, “killer app”. PCs became popular because Lotus 123 revolutionized accounting. Subsequent computer advances all were pushed forward because of innovative software applications.

Advanced gamers using PCs and laptops is what is driving the technology today. Back to Netbooks, they are cheap, easy to use, and provide the basic internet experience. Masses love them because they are easy to use, even Grammy is getting into the market now! As for the IPAD, I am not so sure what Apple is offering is enough to build a new market segment. If we look at the pros and cons, I’ll let you decide.

First we will start with a few of the pros:

Apple’s simplistic style will when people over. It is easy to use. Just touch a button and it will do that job.

Multi-functional- You can surf the net, use it as a digital photo album, send email, and play games, just to name a few features. The best use that I see is that it is going to revolutionize the e-reader segment. Look out Amazon!

Apps Store- Apple has an extensive array of applications to download and will grow exponentially.

Now these are the most important cons that I see:

Price- This is the biggest con that I see for the success of this product. $499-$829 without a wireless data plan. Then you need to pay a monthly subscription fee. Plus you will need to pay for the additional applications. Sure a lot of applications are free, but spending at least $1000 on this limited device is not for me.

Limited use- Apple has a proven Operating System in its IPHONE. They have just enhanced this OS and put it on the IPAD. This means that basic office productivity software will not be integrated into this device. So much for using it at the office. By the way, it doesn’t have a built-in camera either.

Size- If it is not an office productivity device, it is primarily going to be used for recreation. It is too big to lug to your coffee shop to play a game or surf the net. Sure people lug laptops, but this is different. You have to hold this device to use it. Kind of awkward. Plus, wouldn’t you just use your Smartphone any way? Would you take this on a plane to watch a movie? I’m not so sure. Again you have to hold it. Yes you can get a base to prop it on, but would you lug that along as well? Again, maybe not.

You can see where my opinion is slanted. This is not a device that I see being able to be a game changer. I see this as a device you can move around your home. It is a jack of all trades, but a master of none. I don’t think that it will be a huge success. It will sell a large number of products because it is Apple, but if the second generation doesn’t include a lower price and is more useful, it will fade away like the Betamax. As with any new technology, I will take a wait and see approach.

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