The iPAD Experience


I have been using the iPAD for the past few weeks, and decided to write a blog piece on the same as I have been seeing an increasing media noise on tablets and how these are taking over the role of PCs.

There is no doubt that the Apple iPAD has revolutionized personal computing with millions of devices shipped in less than a year. It only again proved that Apple’s Founder CEO Steve Jobs has the pulse of millions of consumers, who keep loving the products that he is able to launch with so much regularity over the past decade.

Apple is the most valuable tech company on the planet today and it is in no small measure, due to the contributions of one man, Steve Jobs.

The iPAD is a marvellous device, no doubt. It is very easy to set up and work, even for non-Apple users. It seamlessly integrates emails, mail attachments, internet browser, calendar, photos and videos. I did have some trouble pulling out my photos from my PC into the iPAD, though that was more due to some wireless transfer issues. Once I physically connected the iPAD to the PC, everything went well.

My experience using Skype on the iPAD has not been great, not as good as the laptop experience. For one, there is no video. Secondly, the audio was not loud enough even at full volume. May be I should check the version of the operating system software on the iPAD. But I went back to the laptop for Skype with video.

I know that iPAD2 has been launched with front-facing video, but that would take quite some time to reach India and I am not an early adopter anyway. My iPAD was bought in March, almost 11 months since it was launched in the U.S. !

I would recommend iPAD for one main use – for teaching children. It is amazing to see the educational software available, such as galaxy or anatomy related stuff, in full high-resolution glory on the iPAD. Of course you can view the same on the laptop, but somehow it looks much better and more “usable” on the iPAD.

The other purpose is navigation with electronic maps. Very convenient. Of course, there is nothing easier than doing email and updating one’s calendar on the iPAD, once you have established the account and achieved the synchronization. Be careful when using the public Wi-Fi access though, as the hot spots are generally unprotected. You have to establish tunneling through to your VPN before you can operate securely. Another word of caution – do not carry out online banking or credit card activities on the iPAD at public hot spots.

I noticed that Apple cleverly locks you into its App Store by taking details of your credit card, even though you might not purchase anything, except to download free software apps. That is the way they have prospered with billions of downloads of apps and songs and videos !

Overall, an excellent consumer product which would spawn copy cats as we have seen in the market over the past six months or so. Notably the Samsung Galaxy Tab is a great tablet, but I think Apple is way ahead with its overall delivery of consumer experience (I own a HTC Desire HD mobile phone with 4.3″ screen running Android 2.2 and Galaxy Tab is very similar with the same operating system).

Enjoy the iPAD, may be wait for iPAD2.

Cheers,

Vijay Srinivasan
12th March 2011
Mumbai

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