After catching up on the coverage and sleeping on it, I’ve got a few more pre-release iPad thoughts to share.
More and more I come to the conclusion that the 10″ iPad is a supersized iPod Touch. Which is not a bad thing but, given the current state of the iPhone OS, will be somewhat limiting for power users. And why the Nokia N800, HTC Advantage, or WorkPad Z50, with their streamlined operating systems, never panned out for me. Yet given the OS point upgrade (to 3.2) and the size/power of the iPad, I’ve independently come to the same conclusion as Boy Genius — there’s GOT to be a major iPhone OS 4.0 refresh on the docket for 2010. How could it not include multitasking? As John asked yesterday, “What if your in Pages and need to look up something on Wikipedia? You have to save your work, go to Wikipedia, then go back into Pages.” And I’d simply like to stream Slacker while check email or browsing the web. This HAS to be coming…?
However, if I reduce my expectations, pumped up after months of imaginary iSlate features, and limit my environs to the home (like Glenn and Ben) the iPad – even in its current form – would make a nice home theater accessory or Audrey replacement. The Slingbox SlingPlayer client possibilities are particularly appealing (pictured above). Especially since Echostar/DISH clearly won’t be offering their SlingTV accessory at retail. Although, we need Sling to bump the video resolution streamed to “mobile” clients for maximum enjoyment.
Also, while Jobs and company probably didn’t want to move the spotlight from the iPad, I suspect some iPad enhancements will surface on the iPod Touch and iPhone platforms. iBooks are a no-brainer and will surely be available to the iPad’s smaller siblings. But I’m also hopeful the iPad Keyboard Dock and/or Bluetooth keyboard tethering will be available to all iPhone OS 3.2 devices, as I Photoshopped below.
Lastly, we’ve seen some crazy talk that the iPad will effectively kill Amazon’s Kindle initiative. While there’s certainly and obviously overlap in function, I don’t see the two devices as direct competitors. Kindles run 50% (or less) the cost of an iPad and does one thing very well. Perfect for many. My mom would absolutely love a Kindle. Whereas she’d have no interest in or idea how to maximize an iPad. (Sorry, Mom.) I’d still like to see Amazon release a 3G-less Kindle at $129 and offer a more reasonably priced blog/RSS download plan for those on Whispernet. But they’re not going anywhere. In fact, with their cheaper eBook prices, I predict the Kindle app will do quite well on the iPad.