Sooner or later the most hyped consumer product of 2010 will come to Canada. Now, the fanboys and girls will have already bought their iPad. And good for them, too, since the loonie is sitting at par at time of writing. But for the rest of us who may want time to reflect and a second opinion to consider before forking over more than $500 yes, more for the pleasure of being in with the in crowd, I’ve rounded up some of the more thoughtful and/or provocative reviews I’ve read for easy reference. You’ll thank me later…
iPad reviews for consumers
- Apple iPad (PCmag.com)
This is as thorough a review of the iPad you’re going to get, so you might as well start here.
“Is the iPad a perfect product? No. And the omissions will give the anti-Apple crowd plenty of ammo. Why do I need this extra device that’s not a full-fledged laptop? Where’s the camera? What about Flash? Um, how about multitasking? These are all valid complaints, but one thing I can say about most Apple products, and certainly the iPad: There may be things it doesn’t do, but what it does do, it does remarkably well.”
- Normal Human Being™ reviews the iPad (The Register)
And she’s not all that impressed.
“After covering Apple products and various chippery for over 20 years, my [Normal Human Being] status is highly questionable. While I’m certainly capable of conjuring an in-depth review of most any electronic whizbangery, my observations are filtered … My conclusions may be either chowderheaded or keen, but they’re certainly not those of an NHB. So I did what any red-blooded American male might do: I asked my wife for help.”
- Wi-Fi issues dominate iPad user complaints (Computerworld)
A crowd-sourced view of common iPad flaws.
“Although users have also reported problems with recharging their iPads from Windows-based PCs or synchronizing the tablet with other computers, Wi-Fi issues have garnered the most complaints, as tallied by the message counts on multiple support forum threads.”
- Apple iPad Review: Laptop Killer? Pretty Close (WSJ/All Things Digital)
A lot of ‘ifs’ from respected technology columnist Walt Mossberg.
“My verdict is that, while it has compromises and drawbacks, the iPad can indeed replace a laptop for most data communication, content consumption and even limited content creation, a lot of the time. But it all depends on how you use your computer.”
- iPad is Here and it Delivers (Slashgear)
“Like Goldilocks, I’ve found something for my computing needs that’s just right in places where laptops and phones wouldn’t work. While it’s a different model of computing than most of us are used to, I expect the device to resonate well with both sophisticated and novice users.”
- 8 Things That Suck About the iPad (Gizmodo)
More like 7, since Number 6 can’t last.
“A lot of people at Gizmodo are psyched about the iPad. Not me! My god, am I underwhelmed by it. It has some absolutely backbreaking failures that will make buying one the last thing I would want to do.”
- Looking at the iPad From Two Angles (New York Times)
One reviewer, two reviews: A review for techies (big deal) and one for everyone else (it’s good, sort of). While it may seem wishy-washy, he does have a point.
“And the techies are right about another thing: the iPad is not a laptop. It’s not nearly as good for creating stuff. On the other hand, it’s infinitely more convenient for consuming it — books, music, video, photos, Web, e-mail and so on. For most people, manipulating these digital materials directly by touching them is a completely new experience — and a deeply satisfying one.”
iPad reviews for creators
- Is iPad a game-changer? (Scripting News)
Dave Winer is most definitely a creator, what you’d call a super user. While he appreciates the iPad’s many strengths, those strengths are still outnumbered by its weaknesses.
“Like everyone else who got one, I am trying to figure out how to make it my own. I keep hitting frustrating limits.”
- iPad danger: app v. web, consumer v. creator (Buzzmachine)
Media critic Jeff Jarvis argues that most of us online are now creators, starting with those of us who merely leave a comment at the end of an article or blog post. The iPad willfully ignores that development.
“The iPad is retrograde. It tries to turn us back into an audience again.”
- Why the iPad will flop (Seeking Alpha)
Because it fills a non-existent need.
“Tablet computers didn’t flop when HP (HPQ) was making them because HP lacked vision or creativity; they flopped because tablets were a bad idea. They’re not as useful as a laptop, and they’re not mobile enough or cheap enough to replace a smartphone — and of course, they can’t make phone calls.”
- Apple’s Strategic iParadox (Harvard Business Review)
For strategy geeks and lovers of Apple (the company).
“But while it liberates people to enjoy services, the iPad chains people to ‘product.’”
- Beyond the iPad (Doc Searls Weblog)
Doc offers up a slightly more forward-thinking and philosophical approach, as usual.
“The first versions of unique hardware designs tend to be imperfect and get old fast. Such was the case with the first iPods and iPhones, and will surely be the case with the first iPads as well. The ones being introduced next week will seem antique one year from now.”