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Reading the iPad

Rory Cellan-Jones | 08:00 UK time, Friday, 28 May 2010

Apple's iPad is a device which many across the media industries seem to have invested with almost magical powers. Newspaper bosses are hailing it as a way of persuading readers to pay for digital content, with Rupert Murdoch - who, according to a biographer, has never been on the internet unsupervised - seen cradling one with apparent adoration.

Screengrab of books on Apple iPadMagazine editors are enthusing about the possibility of glossy interactive editions which will convince premium advertisers to keep spending. And then there are publishers and authors, who still aren't quite sure whether this is the gadget that will finally deliver them into a profitable digital future.

Apple's iBook store, now launching in the UK, is poised to take on Amazon as a major player in digital-book retailing. As I write, it's only stocked with free out-of-copyright books, but I'm expecting deals with major publishers to be unveiled imminently.

There has been a cautious welcome from the Publishers Association whose chief executive Simon Juden called the device "a welcome contribution as it offers a wider choice to consumers and provides further competition to what has been, until recently, a rather narrow market."

Screengrab of childrens' book on Apple iPadFigures released in April show how narrow. Sales of downloads of general books rather than academic titles netted just £2.1m last year, though that was a five-fold increase on the year before. Less than 1% of the market is made up of digital sales. So will the iPad bring lift-off? I've found one small publisher who has high hopes.

Neal Hoskins runs Winged Chariot, which makes beautifully illustrated picture books for small children. He has already launched several of them in iPhone editions - and is now producing iPad versions. "The iPad is huge for us," says Mr Hoskins, "it's made for picture books."

Having seen one of the books, Emma Loves Pink, I can see why this new platform could be attractive, both for publishers and the parents who buy books. The book gives a choice of languages, and the device can read it to your child as she flicks through each page.

Winged Chariot will be entering what could be a lucrative market - an interactive Alice in Wonderland iPad book has already proved a hit amongst US buyers.

Neal Hoskins thinks we are getting a glimpse of the future of digital reading:

"I would hope that the generation born in or around touch-screen devices would expect and enjoy extras to reading. It's only the beginning, really, and what we are thrilled about is where artists will go with this."

Screengrab of Alice in Wonderland on Apple iPadThat's fine for children - but when it comes to adults, is the iPad really meant for books? I've been trying to read one on the device and I'm still torn about its attractions. It is great for reading in bed, especially if you want to turn off the light so as not to disturb your partner - but in bright sunshine, the reflective screen becomes almost unreadable.

And there is another great downside to books bought in Apple's iBook store. They are locked to the device, so you only own the book on the iPad and can't read it elsewhere. For me, and I expect plenty of others, passing books on to family and friends is part of the attraction.

Apple's new baby is a brilliant, if expensive, multimedia device, which may revolutionise the children's book market. But somehow I can't see it making the printed page redundant any time soon.

Update 0803: I've just noticed that the iBook store has now been stocked with a range of paid-for titles, so the deals with the publishers have obviously been done.

But at first glance, it looks as though publishers are demanding premium prices. The Big Short by Michael Lewis costs £15.99 on the iPad - I have just bought this excellent book about the few people who spotted the credit crunch coming from Amazon's Kindle store for $11.99.

And this morning, the Times has launched its iPad version, and again at a jaw-dropping price. You pay £9.99 for the app, but that just lasts 28 days - and you have to keep paying £9.99 each month thereafter.

Are these prices from purveyors of the written word going to win over iPad users? I'm sceptical.


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  • Comment number 1.

    Biggest flaw: It's too shiny to read outside

  • Comment number 2.

    I cant think of much I need less than an iPad. Or an iPhone.

    We are filling up our world with useless and expensive trash.

  • Comment number 3.

    Held off of buying a kindle for the release of the iPad but as I already own an iPhone, can't see what advantages this will have for me especially as the price is so high. Think its off to Amazon.

  • Comment number 4.

    I get far more from my £10 a month from Spotify than I ever would from The Times and its opinion pieces presented as fact.
    I got my iPad delivered yesterday, and so far I've been throughly impressed. The "web in your hand" line makes sense now I've used it.

    A word of caution though, if using these things with children, you definitely want a rubberised, ruggedised case and lots of screen protectors. Germ covered, mucus riddled hands are not really designed for this device.

  • Comment number 5.

    At these prices, no usb, no camera (for Skype) and arranging a micro SIM with a provider - I'm out. Early adopters enjoy.It is too expensive and lacks necessary features

    I'm waiting for iPad2 next year with the usb, camera,OLCD screen, full size SIM (even better dual SIM), longer battery life and more memory.

    A great device, even better and cheaper in version 2. We will see most of these from iphone2.

  • Comment number 6.

    One of the reasons eBook sales in the UK are so low is because eBook availability and pricing is so awful, at least on UK sites. British sites seem to price eBooks higher than the paper copies, in restricted formats, with a very limited range of titles.
    When I buy eBooks, and I do, I buy from US sites which are cheaper, more flexible and have a better range of formats. Which presumably means that my purchases won't be contributing to the publishing industry's numbers.

  • Comment number 7.

    So how many people would really let their young children play with their nice shiny expensive iPad? Sticky fingers, dropped, scratched, chewed etc!

    I must admit I want one but I don't know what I'd actualy do with it. Already have a laptop so I wont carry the iPad around as well on the train etc as thats just more weight in the bag. For real quick and casual use the iPhone can cover most of what I need.

    Book reading? Hmm, £430+ buys a lot of real books that I can read in the sunshine or share with others. Plus e-reader screens are easier on the eye and last a whole holiday without needing to be charged.

    Downloading and watching video's may be useful but if I'm at home I already have something called a TV that I can play those on.

    Games. iPhone does fine with that for casual games while travelling. Wii etc covers it off at home.

    Surfing? Well the lack of flash is a pain in the a**e despite what fanboys insist. New tech should work with existing, not demand wholesale change across the world to fit in with it, unless its a complete paradigm shift which the iPad is not.

    Despite the above I still feel like I want one! Bizzare eh?

  • Comment number 8.

    I was skeptical about both the utility of an iPad and using it for eBooks in particular until I used one for a few hours. That was enough to convince me to buy one when in the US last week. I thought that I would miss holding the physical volume and dislike reading from a light emitting screen rather than a reflective paper page. I was wrong and I find it quite natural.

    Rory correctly highlights the disadvantages of eBooks like inability to share but I can see no technological barrier to making that happen. There are numerous other advantages and disadvantages to eBooks not mentioned in the post. The ability to carry around many books in a small computer without adding weight to your bag is great for reference materials and I like the ability to get hold of a book immediately instead of having to wait a day to buy it online or travel to a local bookshop that might have it in stock. I like the ability to look up words in the dictionary right on the page too. One major downside is that I think most people would be reluctant to take their iPad to the beach even if you could read it in the sun.

    I think that Apple's iBooks is better than Amazon's Kindle both as a reader and as a shopping experience. I hope that the range of available titles in iBooks grows quickly to match Amazon's.

    Newspapers and magazines delivered as apps have the potential to give the consumer a much richer experience than their paper equivalents. The current ones simply repackage the printed material and don't exploit the multimedia capabilities of the new platform. Despite this, I would be quite happy to use some of them like the FT in preference to the newspaper. However when the journalists really start to embrace possibilities beyond the printed word, I think it will be good for both publishers and consumers alike.

    Rory is right, paper is not going away any time soon and the publishers will of course attempt to charge as high a price as they can get away with but market forces will take care of that.

  • Comment number 9.

    The Sky Player is going to change £35 per month for their IPad app (Compared to £6 for the iPhone). Viewing the comments box there is big pressure not to buy untill Murdock reduces the price. I can see the same thing happening to the Times. What happened to £2 per week????

    The Wired App (£2.99) shows what can be done (Although the 500mb footprint is far too big) and why the IPad is ideal for Magazines.

    For books, I've downloaded the 28 freebees that I'll never find time to read but expect books to become as addictive as apps and iTunes.

  • Comment number 10.

    I've used macs all my life. I don't want/lust after an iPad and won't buy one.
    I can't think of anything more useless to me.

    work buy consume die? there is more...

  • Comment number 11.

    The iPad feels 'just right' in a way that only comes from decades of Apple putting usability at the top of its agenda.
    If you want a business tool which will maximise productivity, then I'm sure one of the other big tech companies will cater to your needs. I'm sure their devices will be cheaper, have tons of functionality you'll probably never use hidden away in menus you never knew existed, lots of buttons and flashing lights, and will be ugly and horrible to use.

    btw the iBook store looks great, and reading a book works far better than I'd imagined. As for things like Times Online, well I'm generally very skeptical that people will be willing to pay quite large sums of money to hear the opinions of just a handful of journos, when you've got a whole internet full of them out there for free (unless everyone starts charging a penny for their thoughts).

  • Comment number 12.

    £15.99 for the virtual version of Michael Lewis' book or pay £12.50 on Amazon for the physical hard cover version. Interesting. The physical version isn't tied to a particular manufacturer. you don't need, for example, special device costing the guts of £200 or £500 (depending on your preference) to view it. It can be read in bright sunlight, isn't dependent on the whims of a battery, can be easily transferred to other users, and looks well on a bookshelf.

    This thrashing around trying to define what the ipad is for ("it must be for books") misses the point. It isn't for anything. It exists to purely serve itself. It's the first device targeted at those who define themselves by the consumer durables they own, allowing them to feel validated by it's purchase. The "look at me, I've purchased a product that's carefully contrived coolness, means by extension I'm cool as well" without considering the cost (financially or in human terms) this latest addition to the ephemeral tat we are supposed to fill our lives with, really has.

    Looking forward to Apple's first "Fairtrade" product. Any news on that?

  • Comment number 13.

    @ian mears

    I know what you mean, it's tempting!

    But then the cold flannel of common sense smacks me in the face, whispering that it has too many downsides - no Flash, no USB, can't read it on the beach - and my wallet stays in my pocket.

    Well at least until version two that is!

  • Comment number 14.

    I totally agree with some of the comments about the lack of 'purpose' for the iPad and it's also lack of some features that we would come to expect of a device that is meant to be the latest gadget must-have(?).

    I personally cannot see myself getting one, I'm happy with my MacBook for surfing at home and my phone for when I'm out and about, however I can see that the drawbacks are an advantage for some, for example I'm considering getting one for my parents as they aren't really IT-savvy and only really consume the Internet, it's 'closedness' it means that my parents can't really do any damage to the OS or the hardward, it's easy to use, light, more natural for them than reading from a laptop (that needs to be plugged into the mains after 2-3 hours use), there is also language support for Chinese straight out of the box (we are Chinese!).

  • Comment number 15.

    Rory Cellan-Jones.

    "And this morning, the Times has launched its iPad version, and again at a jaw-dropping price. You pay £9.99 for the app, but that just lasts 28 days - and you have to keep paying £9.99 each month thereafter."

    say you buy 'The Times' from your newsagent, that's £1 every weekday. while I agree that it should be cheaper, it does cost a lot less than buying the actual paper (plus you'll get the benefit of cutting and pasting content for your own use).

  • Comment number 16.

    Is anyone thinking about security with this stuff?

    I've just had a Google on what's available:

    So, basically, you can scan on your home directory, but only by copying it to another computer.

    Here's an article on security in general for portable devices such as iPhones, iPads:,289142,sid...

    Drive encryption is quite lacking.

    Be very careful what sort of data you put on these things. Obviously, things will improve as more security products become available, but right now they're not appropriate for storing sensitive data.

    Why aren't Apple driving the security development faster? Or isn't security 'cool' enough? There are already huge numbers of these things in use, so who is going to take the initiative?

    I suppose Mr Jobs will be sprinkling his 'magic security fairy dust' on every iPad as it leaves the factory...........

  • Comment number 17.

    Please stop advertising for Apple/Gogoel/Facebook et al. This is NOT news.

  • Comment number 18.

    People are missing the point about why the Ipad isn't a good idea for reading books. Ereaders (I have the Sony one) use Electronic Ink to display the text - which makes it look like you are reading a normal book. The screen doesn't flicker (even though you can't notice it) because it becomes a static screen once the text is on. Which means you can read for hours at a time without getting eyestrain.

    Because the IPad screen (and laptop/ pc screens) etc refresh thousands of times each second (even though you can't notice this) it does hurt your eyes and means it wouldn't be a pleasant experience to read a novel this way.

    Ipad looks great for reading magazines and newspapers etc...but for reading a proper book or novel - forget it!

  • Comment number 19.

    It seems that essentially Apple now has a core of people who will buy whatever it produces, no matter how utterly useless.

    At the end of the day the iPad is less capable, poorer performing, lower battery life, more expensive, and not really any larger than a netbook.

    I think I'll stick to the netbook thanks- it means get more for much less, and can do far more with it to boot. Furthermore, my downloaded eBooks, music, and movies aren't just locked to that one device.

    The iPad will be a success for all the wrong reasons- it'll be cool to have one. However, the reality is those that have them are complete and utter mugs, paying a premium and getting nothing more for it. Those who enjoy getting ripped off however will continue to justify it with the age old myths that the experience is somehow better, when it's quite blatantly not, as anyone whose honest about using the incredibly bloated and problematic iTunes which you're forced to deal with when you go Apple will accept.

  • Comment number 20.

    A triumph of form over function

  • Comment number 21.

    Before the Kindle the mass market didn't care about eBooks and saving paper. Popularising eBooks can only be a good thing. One eReader per child maybe?
    Paperbacks and Printed Newspapers are dying financially, killed off by New Media and Social Networking. Devices like the IPad give the next generation, who don't grow up with access to books or newspapers, an interest in quality content.

    @16 - Each IPad comes with a free unicorn with mail in rebate
    @19 - Name a netbook with 10hr+ battery life that you can also charge off a USB port?

  • Comment number 22.

    I was hoping that the new iPad would allow me to subscribe to The Times. I've never paid for newspaper regularly, and at this price I won't be starting.

    If the Times doesn't produce a better pricing structure, the Guardian certainly will. Their iPhone app is superb.

  • Comment number 23.

    My mobile phone is faster and has better spec than this and is less clunky and fits in my pocket.......oh and doesn't put ridiculous price tags on everything.

    Also I have a portable computer that has it's own keyboard a proper operating system that runs proper software....beat that!

    Need I go on....? :P

  • Comment number 24.

    E-Books - just like the real thing, only more expensive and you can't sell them on or buy them second-hand. Who's the winner here?

  • Comment number 25.

    It's too big for your pocket and too small for a dedicated bag, why would anyone buy this?

  • Comment number 26.

    My book reader has a battery life of 7500 page turns, charges in 1 hour from a usb port, costs 1/5 the cost of the Ipad and can read any type of ebook on sale not just Apples.. Beat that Ipad!

  • Comment number 27.

    I'll reserve judgement until I try one but so far it's a big meh... from me. No doubt they will sell well but it's a large pricetag. The killer app for me would be hadwriting recognition, hearning rumors that this may happen because the medical profession wants to use them so that would be a big boon.

    It really is very difficult for me to seperate this from the hype sourrounding the device and I'm sure Apple would think you for the free advertising.

  • Comment number 28.

    Apple, style over content and wallet... Can't stand their general attitude of sod the consumer once hooked, while appearing all fluffy... Better the devil you can see through, microsoft...

  • Comment number 29.

    I'm guessing Commenter 19 has the mythical netbook thats actually powerful enough to smoothly run SD movies and HD movies at full frame, can be ready to use the net in 5 seconds, and has an actual battery life (not just quoted) of 10+ hours.

    I've yet to see this mythical netbook, whereas the iPad does it.
    Why can't people just accept that each person's needs and desires for a computer differ, and as such people make their purchases differently accordingly.

    Was there this much looking down the nose at notebooks from the desktop PC user? Was there this much looking down the nose at netbooks from the notebook users?

    Get over yourselves. Its the first successful take on a form factor that has been around for a while.

  • Comment number 30.

    You have been talking a load of 'tosh' about the iPad! It is one of the first of a new range of so called 'pad' devices and,like most of Apple's products, is only the 'front end' or delivery device for a whole range of products and services, some of which are already delivered through iTunes and many of which are yet to be invented or developed as a consequence of its creation. It is NOT a laptop computer or one of those diminutive excuses for one. As a first, it will inevitably have flaws. However, it is highly likely evolve, become more sophisticated (cheaper?) and fit for the many new purposes it that can be created for it or its inevitable competitors. Although some people will treat it as a toy, as they currently do with their computers and other electronic gadgets, it does have the potential to replace or reinvent the whole media landscape, create new businesses and do significant damage to the printing industry. As a consequence, it could for example, do much to cut down on the use of trees for paper pulp. Cheaper is good!

  • Comment number 31.

    I had a try out of one this afternoon and was very impressed with the looks and build you would expect from Apple.
    No doubt Apple fans and Apple shareholders alike will go and buy one but the iPad will turn into nothing more than an iFad. More functional devices exist already and give it a few months and manufacturers will look at the flaws and improve on them

  • Comment number 32.

    I wonder how much longer Apple is going to get so much attention while dictating how we should use our communications devices and charging for the privilege.

    While you are running these commercials for Apple in the future, could you point out that other mobile devices are available and most of their applications are free (Android, Symbian etc).

  • Comment number 33.

    I saw you on BBC Breakfast this morning, generally slating the iPad. I can't help wondering if your snipes would have been different if you had actually paid for the device, rather been given one free for review purposes?

    You mentioned the lack of multi-tasking but failed to mention that the next iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch operating system features a major upgrade that enables multi tasking. This was announced by Apple a month ago.

    But by far the best bit was when the women presenter on the sofa said "It's not a phone". Well spotted love... It's also not a kettle, a hand saw or a hammer. Her point was?

  • Comment number 34.

    @21 - and if there isn't a USB port handy when you want to charge?
    MSI supply a netbook with 15 hours battery life - my netbook plays SD movies in full (with room to spare on the screen) with no problems, and if shutdown using hibernate it can be back up and running in 5 seconds.
    and @29 where is the mythical iPad that can be used to create content as well as a netbook can?
    But you know, this is all horses for courses.
    It's fairly irrellevent to compare a netbook (or laptop) with an iPad - they're just not in the same market. You should be comparing iPads to Smartphones, the Dell tablet, iPods, and other media devices like those by Archos.
    I just feel that the size of the device, the lack of a forward-facing camera (at least in this version - I'm sure it will be available when Apple wants its users to upgrade), no way to make phone calls (it could easily have a wireless headset - maybe a future upgrade again), and the price will keep it subdued in the market. Your mileage may vary.

  • Comment number 35.

    Sorry, 9.5"x7.5" is too big for me to have any use for this device. It won't fit in my jacket pocket and I don't use a bag. So it would stay at home, sitting uselessly beside my big screen monitors that I use to view digital stuff.

    I'm not an anti-Apple fanatic, I have an iPod nano which I love and would recommend to anyone. But I am long past defining myself by the stuff I own, I prefer to define myself by the stuff I do. And until the iPad does something I want to do better than my current clutch of consumer electronics it will be irrelevant to me.

  • Comment number 36.

    @29 and where is this mythical iPad that can play 1080p movies? And why would you need to charge it off of a USB port. That implies that you have a computer running (which already makes your iPad pointless) which also means that there is a plug.

    And I found your mythical netbook: Alienware M11x. It has and 8.5 hour battery life if you are just web browsing, word processing etc, and also has a decent graphics card for proper gaming. It has an HDMI output socket and all the other features that a real computer has. Yes it costs a bit more (£749 for the basic model, £999 for the higher spec) but it has a 500GB hard drive or a 256GB solid state drive. It looks better than the iPad and does more.

  • Comment number 37.

    I would be sold on an iPad on it’s e-book functionality alone. What a pleasure to carry an entire library with you and still have other functuality.

    The only problem I have is, that in my experience, the paper counterparts are usually 30% of the price of the electronic ones. So for the time being I will have to stick to destroying the rain forest :(

    Perhaps I’ve just been looking in the wrong places.

  • Comment number 38.

    What can an iPad do that even a cheap Laptop can't? A Netbook walks all over the iPad for performance, multi tasking, Flash, connectivity and so on.

  • Comment number 39.

    no offence Rory :-)

    Great minds enjoy being in touch with real life and reading real books.
    Average minds enjoy discussing football over a beer.
    Small minds discuss electronic toys and Facebook.

  • Comment number 40.

    As a niche author, I was dubious about ebooks... but over the last two years, the ebook version of my book has outsold the physical one about two to one, despite being double the price.

    I can only assume that people are prepared to pay a big premium for instant delivery. With over 5,000 paper books in my house, and a bookcase full of those I need to get around to reading, I'll have paper still, but the customer is king, not the author.

    Will I get an iPad? Maybe, but it would be a lot more compelling if it supported Flash, because for all that Apple say that there are technically better alternatives to Flash, these mean nothing to me unless the websites I want to access choose to adopt them.

    I can't help feel that it would be easier for one Apple to make Flash work than for a thousand website owners to migrate.

  • Comment number 41.

    Part of the reason for the high price of apps such as The Times, Sky etc is Apple demanding a 40% cut for all transactions taking place in App store which is mcuh higher than teh competitors such as Android, Windows Mobile etc. I wonder if as a result such apps will be cheaper on Android tablets?

  • Comment number 42.

    Phil90125 et el. Get a life!!

    I assume you dont have anything in your house that has been built in China!!

    The Ipad is what it is, a nice tool for surfing the web, reading books and watching videos. Yes its expensive but it does work really well and suits my lifestyle as I spend 3 hours a day on public transport.

    Everyone is free to make their own decision on what to buy or what not to buy and your judgemental comments do you no favours. Why dont you give it a go before slagging it off or are your scared that you might actually like it.

    Enjoy your miserable, dull and gedget free life!!

  • Comment number 43.

    I'm a proper computer geek, and have yet to see the attraction of the iPad. First of all, the form factor - the only place you can comfortably use it is on the couch. Out and about, you need to balance it on an arm to use it (and it doubles as a big "I'm rich - ROB ME!" sign). Glare from sunlight also makes it useless. Indoors, placing it on a desk means you have to hunch over to view the screen, or again you have to hold it up or support it somehow.

    In contrast, a netbook or ultra low-voltage laptop can be balanced on your lap or a desk with the screen at a good angle, come with a keyboard, and most cost less than even the cheapest 16GB iPad. And I haven't even factored in how they run a full OS with no limits rather than a walled-garden environment where what you can and can't do is dictated by Jobs the Saviour.

  • Comment number 44.

    As ever, any discussion of an Apple product provokes a fistfight on this blog, with some accusing us of hyping a commercial product and others attacking me for negativity about a company which, to some eyes, can do no wrong. That's fine - you are all entitled to your views. But I must correct Fox Tucker (comment 33) who says my views would have been different if i'd paid for an iPad myself rather than getting it free for review purposes. I have actually paid for mine - a friend brought it over from the United States a couple of weeks ago.

  • Comment number 45.

    I have an iPad. But, I'm amazed how emotive people get around Apple products. You don't have to have an iPad anymore than you have to have a massive plasma TV or a Ferrari.

    However, if a product does want you want, fine. If it doesn't, equally fine - choose something else, if anything. But ultimately we are able of deciding what we spend our money on. And it's really nobody else's business what consumer goods we buy from whom.

    All this emotion over a certain manufacturer either for or against is pointless. There are more important things in the world than a new piece of technology.

  • Comment number 46.

    chriscarberry1 #18.

    "Because the IPad screen (and laptop/ pc screens) etc refresh thousands of times each second.."

    usually below 100hz, while the Air Display will give you 150 frames/second.

    Andy Mein (#25) and alan_addison (#35).

    you're not alone :-)

    Early Adopters Struggle to Figure Out How to Carry iPad

  • Comment number 47.

    Typing this on my iPad, I got it today from Apple Store Liverpool, all I can say is it is amazing!

    It's much, much better than a laptop for browsing on the sofa whilst watching weakest link :-)

  • Comment number 48.

    Can you read an ebook on your sofa whilst lying flat holding your iPad upwards with one hand? How long can you do it?
    I can do it when I read a book.

  • Comment number 49.

    Peter, why on earth would I want to do that? It sounds very uncomfortable!

    Real Racing HD is incredible! Can you play that on a book?


  • Comment number 50.

    "It sounds very uncomfortable!"
    On the contrary, that's how I read books :-)

    "Real Racing HD" - is it a game? I quit playing games when I got married back in the 90's.

  • Comment number 51.

    How about BBC's iPlayer, does it work on an iPad?

  • Comment number 52.

    Peter, yes, iPlayer DOES work on my iPad. Does it work on your book? :-)

    Any other questions?

    It's better to remain quiet and have people think you're a fool, rather than open your mouth and remove all doubt.

  • Comment number 53.

    "It sounds very uncomfortable!"
    On the contrary, that's how I read books

    That my friend, is your opinion and you are entitled to it. My opinion is, it sounds very uncomfortable.

    I hardly play games either but this one is FUN! Give it a go, you might enjoy it.

  • Comment number 54.

    I've been reading eBooks for about 10 years on and off, it used to be a very simple process, find a book, buy it, install the reader on your device, copy the book over, unlock it with a code (usually your credit card number) and read it. They were cheap, easy, and when I moved from Psion to Palm to PocketPC to iPhone they all followed me with no problem.

    However recently publishers have seen the money that can be made and have ruined it. Now the prices are almost if not more than the physical books. I wanted to buy the new Dan Brown book a few months ago, it was more expensive on the App Store than it was on Amazon as a real book! Another book I tried to buy recently wasn't "available in my region" now they are staggering book releases, for no reason. Not to mention App Store books will be stuck on my Apple device if I want to move to Android or WM7 in the future I'll have to leave my books behind.

    If anything hopefully Apple and Amazons power will help drag the publishers in to the modern era like they did with Music, Movies, and TV shows.

  • Comment number 55.

    Pointless thing.

    My 5 year old Dell laptop comes with a nice DVD player, and a lovely screen protector, aka, the lid, more than the iFad.

    Oh, and I can go no hands without getting a pile of books to angle the screen at the optimum angle.

    Enjoy your hand cramps, and cricks in the necks iFad users.

  • Comment number 56.

    Tengsted #55.

    "iFad" -- inspired!!

  • Comment number 57.

    AS I remember when going into NYC working I always purchased a copy of the New York Times to read on the way home the trip taking anywhere from 1 hour to 1.5 if the train had some problems. I had to come out of pocket every day for the paper.

    If i were paying 1 pound a copy and commuting twenty days a month that would come out to around 20 pounds to your seller.

    At that price 10 pounds sounds a deal even more if you can access the paper on the week ends as well when my wife insists we can not live with out the Sunday Edition and it’s sales and specials here.

    Also to that was on going in to the City every day the mountains of paper collected at the platforms just on the morning in commute. Grand Central Terminal had two levels of trains platforms with roughly 50 tracks per level.

    Dumpsters at every one allowing a mountain of papers to be dropped off in town and carrying the same amount of paper to people going home.

    Just between those papers and the full color magazines as pollution, I want one.

  • Comment number 58.

    What is it with the tree hugging and paper saving? Newspapers are made from a lot of recycled paper and in any developed country the rest of that paper is going to come from an FSC certified forest. The same goes for books. Look at the back of a newspaper or book next time you pick one up.

    How much recycled material goes into an ipad or a kindle? Or how recyclable are these devices once past their use by date? I would guess not a lot. They will more than likely end up in an African country like a vast amount of consumer electronics nowadays and left to someone else to deal with.

    I'm going to stick with books and newspapers at last then you can pass them onto people and if not needed can be recycled easily and anywhere.

  • Comment number 59.

     I think that the truism "time will tell" should be kept in mind. With the iPad, Apple have created a new class of device. How useful this new class is going to be will only be known in the years to come. Also where the iPad ranks in this class can only be known when the class matures.  

    I've bought an iPad so that I can more easily study my OU courses on the train during my daily commute using the PDF versions of the course materials. The logic being that I don't have to carry the books, I won't take up more than my fair share of the table, no longer do I have to fight the book to stay open in the right place while I literally do the maths (applied in this case) and the PDF reader allows me to bookmark and navigate content with ease. Although it is very early days I think things are looking good.

    Another use for it to get my early morning web fix without having to fire up my desktop computer for just 30 mins.

    I must admit that I like having the iPhone typing correction/predictive text  available to do things like this.

    The biggest downside is not being able to watch the videos on the BBC news site, but HTML5 cometh so hopefully we will get the 21st century Interweb soon and this will no longer be a problem.


  • Comment number 60.

    I find it ironic how people go on about apple fans who will love and buy anything. Those same people usually hate anything Apple make, no matter what.

  • Comment number 61.

    re Pixelvisions comment reflection in daylight.....does anyone produce a laptop with a screen that can combat this?

  • Comment number 62.


    I agree completely, and feel that it's a great shame that any time you mention any Apple product, a fistfight starts. There seems to be a small hardcore group of Windows users who must feel so threatened by Apple's products (why, if they're so rubbish?) that they have to dive straight in and attack. Of course, these are the same people who sneered at the iPhone, and laughed at the iPod, yet we all know how Apple changed the game with those products.

    The iPad will do the same, regardless of the naysayers. Personally, I won't be getting ANY tablet computer, as the kind of work I do requires a greater degree of precision than is obtained from fingertips, but I think it's a great device for content consumption now, and who knows, it may well become a great device for content creation in the future.

    It's just a shame that some people can't see a little further into the future, and react with what can only be described as fear to anything new that Apple make.

  • Comment number 63.

    There are plenty of dumb iFad owners queuing up to pay whatever Apple want to charge in it's locked down enviroment.

    Those same idiots it seems have never actually seen or used a proper e-book reader with e-ink. If they had, they wouldn't believe such silly claims that the iFad is a e-book reader.

    On a side note, I see the BBC are also sponsoring the iFad on BBC F1 Coverage, with commentators mentioning it, and Jake Humphry carrying it around (switched off) like a fashion accessory. I wonder how much Apple paid for that obvious product placement. (and BBC please don't try and use the we use it for broadcast excuse, as if that were really true, they would have been using Windows based tablets that have been around for ages already without the restrictions of being locked into Apples proprietary content)

  • Comment number 64.

    I made a post yesterday regarding security, but it seems that nobody else here is worried about the implications.

    Every corporate security policy I've seen and all major audit methodology/standards (IS1, ISO 27001, PCI DSS etc) mandate anti-virus solutions.

    However, the iPad has nothing available to monitor the system for malicious code. The only solution available involves downloading files from the iPad to a Mac for scanning.

    Now that some local authorities are ordering these for their staff, shouldn't the BBC be investigating this aspect further? There could be another major security incident on the front pages of the newspapers soon if nothing is done.

    I would appreciate it if the BBC could spend less time advertising 'technologies' (in this case, nothing but a new style of tablet computer), and look a little deeper. When will antivirus technologies (amongst other basic security tools that are currently lacking) be implemented?

    Would it be worth your time to get some professionals to try and hack into one of these things, or try and get data off the drive, as may happen if a council official leaves it on a train? There are plenty of organisations that can perform this investigation.

    Disk encryption has shortcomings for the Mac, it seems that the iPad has even less tools for this?

  • Comment number 65.

    cjseary #64.

    "Every corporate security policy I've seen and all major audit methodology/standards (IS1, ISO 27001, PCI DSS etc) mandate anti-virus solutions. ... Now that some local authorities are ordering these for their staff, shouldn't the BBC be investigating this aspect further?"

    why the BBC? I would have thought that the onus to comply with standards is on the respective local authority.

  • Comment number 66.

    The onus is certainly on the local authority to comply.

    However, the media has a role in investigating serious technology issues, which this may turn out to be. That's what the BBC Technology page, and dot.Rory, exist for isn't it? Or do they just regurgitate copy from PR agencies now?,17465/

    Still, it's nice to see someone respond on the issue of security. It's a very important issue, and I really don't know why a product like this has been released when there does not seem to be the proper level of protection available.

    While many of the arguments on this thread have been about fairly trivial issues (IMO), this one is very important. Unfortunately, security is usually ignored whenever a 'cool' new product is released. The sheer numbers of these items already purchased mean that any security deficiency will have perhaps serious implications.

  • Comment number 67.

    I’ve had the64GB iPad since 3G launch in USA, purchased the unlimited 3G data plan for $30 a month, installed on in various apps including Netflix, Slingbox, Reuters, BBC and integrated the email/calendar with MS outlook exchange.

    It has replaced note pad for work, caught up on ‘House’ (downloaded from itunes and also content converted from Tivo to iPad format) on flight from USA to UK and did emails. Take it out for breakfast to read the latest newspapers online – canceled my Kindle newspapers (yes I had one) and used the Kindle App on the ipad to access the books I’ve purchased so far and added a few new ones - buying them on Amazon USA bypassing all the expensive higher prices here in UK.

    Download the Reuters app for great free access to news. Tivo was run out of the UK and Netflix service not available either - and there are great alternatives to expensive UK apps.

    The iPad has replaced my personal laptop for trips and general use around the house (on Wi-Fi) - and I use BTopenzone instead of AT&T 3G while in UK.

  • Comment number 68.

    OK. There are 60+ comments on the Beeb's website. Most of them are pretty damning about the iPad device. Over 500,000 people have purchased one so this would suggest to me that there is something attractive about the device.

    My iPad arrived on Thursday and since then I haven't been able to put it down. Great piece of engineering.

    Remember when the iPhone was first released it was slated. Now into it's fourth version (soon), with over 10 million users and with a user interface that has been copied so many times I see the iPad creating a new trend. It is all about lifestyle.

  • Comment number 69.

    Please don't use sales as proof of a products usefulness or quality. There are plenty examples of abysmal products that sell well due to slick and/or devious marketing. (Xbox and iPod are both examples of this).

    The iFad is the modern Edsel. Sure 500,000 may have bought one globally, but Apple can sell anything to anyone, as long as it comes with slick marketing and lots of colors. Consumers are mostly cretins that can't think for themselves.

  • Comment number 70.

    cjseary #66.

    "It's a very important issue, and I really don't know why a product like this has been released when there does not seem to be the proper level of protection available."

    I do not know either but my guess is that Apple, pitching at its target audience of designers and young 'upwardly mobile' professionals who're prepared to pay premium for looks, tries to maximise its profits at all costs.

    security incurs expense: licensing fees for the use of various algorithms/technologies, usually paid per unit.

    the iPad isn't alone in these failings either:

    Vulnerability in iPhone data encryption

  • Comment number 71.

    MarkG #69.

    "..but Apple can sell anything to anyone, as long as it comes with slick marketing and lots of colors."

    disagree, you can't fault the design aesthetics of their products.

    as Robert Brown (#68) rightly (IMO) says: "It is all about lifestyle"

  • Comment number 72.

    #70 cont'd.

    no security is perhaps better than a false sense of security, no?

  • Comment number 73.

    I think that my iPad is absolutely great, and I am using it more and more

    I am checking the football scores with it, and checking what's going to be on TV next!

    I also can send emails without getting off the sofa

    Plus, I got mine free for doing a trial offer, then getting some friends to do it as well!

    You can do it too:

    [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

  • Comment number 74.

    I received mine from Apple on the day before release and everyone who's picked it up since can't put it down. Until you use one you'll never realise just what a brilliantly designed device it is. It can't replace the full functionality of a laptop or desktop and was never meant to. However, for browsing the web, e-mails, photos and video it's so much more quick and convenient than either. Apple's 'lectern' case, which tilts the iPad up for ease of use in your lap or on a table-top is also a great accessory. IMO, the lack of Flash support is more a problem for website developers than users: if they're serious about maximising visitor numbers then they should address it. In any case, I didn't find it a hindrance at all. The iBooks application is going to revolutionise my reading: just the thing when you're running out of shelf space. The clever animations that follow your finger as it 'turns' the page were a nice surprise. If other manufacturers rush to release their own tablets, then Apple has yet another game-changer on its hands. With the iPhone 4.0 software (that promises multi-tasking and more enhancements) following for the iPad in the autumn, what's not to like?

  • Comment number 75.

    cjseary #64.

    Security? It is a iPad. It is made by apple, hence apple tell you what code you can or cannot run on it. Closed, unless you jailbreak it, and break your user agreement with apple, in which case- it is your problem.

    This is exactly the point- with apple, they vet everything that can be used on their products. They're judge, jury and executioner when it comes to apps. Browsing on Safari? again- so long as you haven't jailbroken the iPad, it is probably just as secure as safari on a Mac. The very fact that they exercise so much control over what the consumer "wants" is the reason I choose not to buy their products. However, the upside of it is that malicious code would be very hard to get on the device in the first place, let alone execute. They don't need antivirus software because you can't implant a virus in a normal ipad in the same way as a normal desktop/laptop computer.

    As for disk encryption? what for? reading top secret government manuals on the iBook store? As it happens, I would have thought that it provides at least 256bit AES disk encryption like the iphone, (although apparently that is easy enough to circumvent with a linux machine- apple will likely fix that shortly though). Besides, its hardly an efficient word processing device, surely you'd buy a laptop if you needed security, and were typing confidental documents. The current level of encryption which it offers by default is good enough for family photos, etc.

    But anyway, security is generally the users responsibility, Apple merely provide the product as is with its own encryption. If extra measures are needed, then quite simply, the iPad is NOT an option.

  • Comment number 76.

    I have several apple products (ipod, iphone and an imac which I love), I am not a fanboy as I also own and use a windows laptop and netbook. All of these devices are used in different ways and for different uses. The problem with the ipad is that I cannot see where it would beat anything I currently have. When the ipad was first announced I was very keen on buying one to replace my netbook / laptop - I then saw the spec!! In my opinion there are far too many restrictions enforced by apple as to what I could do with the ipad. I accept these restrictions on my iphone as at the end of the day it is a phone with extra functionality bolted on. When the ipad was first rumoured I like many other people expected the device to be a scaled down macbook which would run OSX and have all the normal functionality of a laptop / netbook. What we ended up with is big iphone without the phone. I am used to paying a premium for apple products but I must say the prices of the various specs of ipad are far to high - even more so when you add the data bundle required for the 3G variants.
    Seeing as many adopters of the ipad will be iphone users / owners why can we not teether the ipod to the iphone - I for one cannot see the point in paying for two seperate data packages.
    I will be sticking with what I have until I see the spec of the Ipad 2 which will no doubt be announced next January.

  • Comment number 77.

    @29: "And I found your mythical netbook:"

    You really didn't, but I'll let you continue...

    "Alienware M11x. It has and 8.5 hour battery life if you are just web browsing, word processing etc,"

    The best absolute real world figure I've found so far for this device is 6 hours, and that performance isn't the greatest. Usable but not fantastic.

    "and also has a decent graphics card for proper gaming."

    Which takes the battery life down to between 2 - 3 hours

    "It has an HDMI output socket and all the other features that a real computer has. Yes it costs a bit more (£749 for the basic model, £999 for the higher spec) but it has a 500GB hard drive or a 256GB solid state drive. It looks better than the iPad and does more."

    Can't criticise HDMI, but at that price and a weight comparable to a 13 inch Macbook Pro then it is a laptop with a small screen and not a netbook. It also has a vastly underpowered processor compared to it's graphics card compatriot.

    But it also costs double for the specification that you ask for gaming, and is not going to run many games past World of Warcraft and games that are a few years old like Half-Life 2.

    If I wanted a decent mobile gaming machine I'd buy a larger screened and bigger laptop for improved cooling and performance.

    Forgetting ultimately that devices like the iPad aren't actually designed to do what you ask the M11x to do. It isn't a laptop replacement device, it's a basic creation and consumption device. It's a different thing entirely. If this device fulfils your needs then fantastic, that's great for you. Buy one. It isn't the same device in the slightest as an iPad though, and you cant pretend it is.

    If people don't see the need for an iPad, then they probably won't see the need for the upcoming Android and WebOS devices to compete with it, like the JooJoo or the Notion Ink Adam.

  • Comment number 78.

    @77 The M11x runs Crysis (one of the most graphicallly advanced games on PC) on medium settings, and max'ed out settings for Left 4 Dead 2. The processor is slower relative to the graphics card because it has an in built overclocking function and the GPU is far more important for gaming in most cases. For yourself, I am guessing that it would be of little use, but for the people who are using the iPad for the games (and there are many, such as @49) perhaps they don't fully realise what they are missing out on.

    I can actually see the iPad as a great device for journalists to refer to notes whilst interviewing or talking to the camera after a press conferece etc. as it is easier to scroll through a text document on a touch screen than to flick through a dozen sheets of paper.

  • Comment number 79.

    Much as I think the iPad is a cool device, this amounts to free advertising for Apple/Google. The likes of Microsoft hardly ever get positive mention on this blog, whatever they do.

  • Comment number 80.

    @78 Crysis is three yers old and the engine that runs L4D2 is six. Thts not to disparage the power and capabilities of the Source engine as it's a wonderful piece of kit, but it is definitely showing it's age.

    You seem to get my point though, different devices for different people. You can't compare the M11x to the iPad. They serve differing functions.

  • Comment number 81.

    Damn, I was hoping to buy The Big Short on the iPad too, I'll just buy the book until the prices go down.

  • Comment number 82.

    "Rupert Murdoch - who, according to a biographer, has never been on the internet unsupervised"

    Rupert Murdoch should never be allowed to do *anything* unsupervised.

  • Comment number 83.

    Having read through everything here (and elsewhere) and already having a desktop, laptop and iPhone, the decision for me is based on a product to use as an effective eReader. In this remit the Kindle beats the iPad hands down. How many of us have tried squinting at a laptop or iPhone screen in sunlight?

  • Comment number 84.

    In defence of Jake flashing the iPad on the BBC F1 coverage, there is a real time monitoring app which shows info about the race which as a spectator or commentator must be very useful while at the race.

  • Comment number 85.

    I went to the new electrical superstore that opened locally on Sunday and was accosted by the Apple lady almost immediately as I picked up an iPad.
    Her question: 'What do you think about it?'
    My reply: 'Looks good, but ... It's a solution looking for a problem'
    She was quite taken aback! Enough said.

  • Comment number 86.

    While it is another iPad story here, I must say that Rory has raised some interesting points.

    I do have to chuckle though that whenever ianything is mentioned out come the people asking why they will never get one, how it costs too much, features are not enough, is a fad etc etc. Well I just have got one and I can say this much – It is cool, it works and is a hell of a lot easier to take about with me during the day than my notebook. Especially on the train to keep a check on emails, then sit back and watch a video.

    I am annoyed at Apple for their pricing, their ‘way’ or no way type approach. They want to make money and by selling what is getting on for 2 million of these things, content producers are following the trail to make the most money. Be that Magazine, Newspaper or publishers of books.

    Personally having had a read of one of the free titles I can safely say I will never buy a book on the iPad. I prefer the feel, lightness and general experience of a printed book. I also like the fact in 20 years I can pick that book up and read it, pass it on to my children – where the iPad will be by then defunct bottom of draw tat.

    Finally – if you are considering to buy an iPad and don’t want to fork out for the 3G version – do as I did. Get said WiFI version, and a MiFi from mobile operator 3. Turn it on, put in bag/pocket and you have a mobile WiFi Hotspot with you – plus your phone, your friends notebook etc etc can all connect together (up to 5 devises) and for £50 contract free, it is a bargain to me!

  • Comment number 87.

    Year and years of research into digital paper and apple thinks it can wipe up the whole thing just like that using conventional technology!! may be for 'readers light', but I think that die hard 'lit fiends' will need something better. It's glaringly obvious!

  • Comment number 88.

    @78 Crysis may be 3 years old but it was designed to be future ready. basically when it was released no computer could play it on the highest settings. Only now are there computers that can trully play it on Ultra with 16xAA etc. Since it remains the benchmark of graphical beauty, I think it is still a valid point to make. This still doesn't detract from the fact that the M11x is a better product overall than the iPad.

  • Comment number 89.

    @76 It's not designed to replace your netbook or laptop. Before I tried one, I too thought that is what it was supposed to do and I drew the same conclusions as you. However I now admit I was wrong. The iPad doesn't make any sense on paper but when you use one for an hour or two it does. The iPad does some of the things you do on your iPhone and laptop but in a much, much better way. For me it fits in between your iPhone and computer in a way that no netbook does and that is why I bought one. Having used it for a week or two, I cannot imagine being without one.

    @86 thanks for the MiFi tip!

    @all you iPad slagging, anti-apple bigots - you're posts are funny. Of course you are all entitled to your opinions but they would be so much more interesting if they were based on real experience of the thing your slagging and ironically more difficult to dismiss. 2 million sold in less than 60 days unarguably makes the iPad a successful technology product. Maybe there is something in it? Oh, wait, no you can't try one because it is goes against some form of technology religion.

    @digital paper fans. Definitely better technology for replicating the printed page on an electronic screen but unfortunately it results in devices that have a single purpose. That's why the market for them isn't very big despite them being available for several years. Even though the original blog post was about using an iPad for reading, it is just one of the myriad uses for the device. That's why the iPad is succeeding, not necessarily because it makes the best reader in the world.

  • Comment number 90.


    I ammume you are one of the fools that parted with their cash, so have to somehow justify it's existence.

    The fact remains, it's an overpriced under delivering paperweight. And yes, I have seen them.

  • Comment number 91.

    OK I confess to being a complete gadget freak. I would buy any matt titanium box that has been blessed by Steve Jobs, I have the iPad (64GB + 3G), I get it. And it really is revolutionary.

    I have a desk top at home for the big stuff. My lap top just got consigned to the scrap heap (i.e. eBay). My wife loves it.

    It's truly portable, which a lap top isn't, and the user experience is superlative. Books, newspapers, you name it (and the answer to the outrageously expensive iBook store is the Kindle bookstore, for which there's an App on the iPad).

    Plenty of flaws (I agree with most of the posts here), but it will do to the portable computing market what the iPhone has done for mobile phones. Watch the rest of the pack catch up!

  • Comment number 92.

    I really like Apple devices and use a Mac computer and an iPhone, but I don't really see the point of the iPad to be honest.

    I played with one in the shop and whilst it was very cool, there isn't really much it does that the iPhone doesn't do - and you can carry that round in your pocket - whilst it doesn't do as much as a proper Macbook which is fairly compact and light anyway.

    Having tried the on-screen keyboard I can say that I really would not want to do much typing on this device.

    It's priced too high for what it is at the moment. The interface is very slick and it's great for web browsing, albeit the lack of Flash hinders it at the moment. Whatever Steve Jobs says about the technology (and I think he's right in general) one of the things I use my laptop for most is catch-up TV, and excluding the iPlayer most of these services won't be supported at the moment.

    It is a very nice interface for web browsing and photo viewing and in my opinion it took until the third iteration of the iPhone before Apple produced a really compelling device, so I don't doubt that the iPad will find a good slot in the market eventually, however at the moment I find it to be a bit of an expensive toy.

  • Comment number 93.

    Everyone is entitled to their own opinion in regards to gadgets and stuff.
    No point comparing gadgets to one another because there is always a better model coming out just around the corner.
    The iPad is a new generation of gadget which like all gadget is more of a want than a need but to truly appreciate the iPad, you have to understand one thing...... its POTENTIAL!!!
    When the iPhone came out, it practically exploded the app scene due to its potential of doing absolutely anything that the mind could percieve.
    The same would apply to the iPad.
    If you have seen the vids of the iPad, you can see there is no limit in what it can be capable of and that what makes the iPad a "must have" for all gadget geeks.
    The only downside for me is the price. However, being a gadget freak, I would find a way to purchase one.

    The iPad is in its early stages of its life cycle. Overtime, it can be used for numerous fields. For students, Scientist, Medical personnel.

  • Comment number 94.

    It's just a very overrated gismo, like the other crap you get in the gimmicks section of Selfridges. You can't plug an USB stick in, you can't call people. You can only do one task at a time despite the huge screen. It's heavy, it protrudes out from the centre on both sides (bad design, like Apple was trying to save on casing). It's basically just a giant picture frame for surfing the net, something that can be done with smart phones and small laptops from many companies already. Plus you can could film and take photos with most smart phones unlike with ipad. It's nothing like a real computer, with little memory and no ability to word process, analysis data and make presentation.

    It's just a very expensive ploy to get people who like to label themselves as geeky, techno and sophisticated to buy one to increase their self-esteem. Nothing else. It's not even something you can carry around because it's just too big and would crush into people and things (which explain despite its popularity I haven't seen anyone using one in public). Going by how flimsy ipods are, it’ll probably crack easily.

    It’s been possible to read books online even before the iphone by google books. It doesn’t look so fancy, but then the books were scanned in and not designed to attract ipad buyers. How the books looks doesn’t change its content, I save money by taking grabby editions from the library and it’s the same as the newer versions in the shops. Picking on children books because of pretty pictures is really scrapping the bucket in trying to promote the ipad. It’s not been designed as a kid’s toy, so children using it is out of the question. Adults can’t use it to read to children because they have to make sure the child doesn’t touch it too much for its own protection and the child’s. Adult books would be plain, just like the hard copies.

  • Comment number 95.

    Quote: No ability to word process, analysis data and make presentation says Leella.

    You can do all 3. Check the facts first. In fact the guy behind me in the queue also in Liverpool was doing a series of presentations this week and was buying the iPad just for this purpose.

    Quote: bad design, like Apple was trying to save on casing.
    The black bit around the edge is because it's a touchscreen! DOH!!

    Quote; Going by how flimsy ipods are, it’ll probably crack easily.
    I have had 9 iPods and two iPhones, not one has broken. Maybe you just can't look after the items you buy.

    Peter Frampton (great name!) stopped playing games when he got married! Poor thing.

  • Comment number 96.

    I dont get it at all. Who actually needs this ? People have their heads burried in their phones now. Now you can buy a gadget that does exactly what a laptop does, better , cheaper and without having to be castrated by a system that does not allow you to read web content as it should or indeed have the freedom of choice .

    Apple has turned from inovator to jailor . You cant use flash or indeed any open source material on the web . You have to use what they tell you even if it isnt any good . You are crippled by Apple conformity.

    Microsoft is hailed as the devil for forcing people to use their proprietry systems and was even taken to court for actually having the timmerity to put its own applications on its own operating system and yet the Apple IPad which is far more restrictive and zeophobic is looked at by their brainwashed fans as the most amazing thing since the wheel.

    All smells of brainwashing to me

  • Comment number 97.

    "I have had 9 iPods and two iPhones, not one has broken. Maybe you just can't look after the items you buy."

    Do you realise how stupid that comment looks ?

  • Comment number 98.

    I have to admit that I love Apple products and I own a Mac as my home computer (I won't touch windows outside the office), I have an iPod touch which is also a fantastic idea and I find all of Apple's stuff to be brilliantly executed.

    However, I can't help thinking that Apple have launched a lemon with the iPad. After all it doesn't do a lot more than an iPod touch although, yeah, it's bigger.

    I also find the price hard to swallow; the base model starts at £429.00 and the non-3G 64GB version is £599.00 which is starting to knock on the door of the entry level MacBook and I know which I'd rather have.

    Yes, I think the iPad will carve a niche for itself and will probably be a big success, not least of all because for some people Apple can do no wrong and and product that they launch is immediate;y snapped up without question. But does it really do anything that I need it to that would convince me to buy one, especially at those prices.

    I have to say, no, and it's not likely to anytime in the near future.

  • Comment number 99.

    I had a play with one for the first time on Saturday at the App store in the Trafford Centre. It can be summed up very easily. Yes, it looks lovely and achingly cool. Yes, woes betide if you drop it. Could I get a laptop with vastly better specs, capability and usability for the same money? Yes. Is it basically a massive iPhone with no phone? Yes. Will I buy one? No.

    I was bored after about 10 minutes and I have an iPhone which is excellent, but it just doesn't translate as a tablet. I have 20 years in the industry and can't remember anything that 'looks' as fantastic, but ... The big question is why. What is the point in it? What would you use it for? Style > substance sums Apple up, try using iTunes for more than 5 seconds without pulling your eye brows out. The price is rediculous for what you're getting, in 12 months when the novelty has worn off, expect eBay to be clogged with them.

  • Comment number 100.

    "95. At 5:30pm on 02 Jun 2010, MKJJ52 wrote:
    Quote: No ability to word process, analysis data and make presentation says Leella.

    You can do all 3. Check the facts first. In fact the guy behind me in the queue also in Liverpool was doing a series of presentations this week and was buying the iPad just for this purpose.

    Quote: bad design, like Apple was trying to save on casing.
    The black bit around the edge is because it's a touchscreen! DOH!!

    Quote; Going by how flimsy ipods are, it’ll probably crack easily.
    I have had 9 iPods and two iPhones, not one has broken. Maybe you just can't look after the items you buy."

    I didn’t mention the frame, I explicitly stated casing (ie - all over). It sticks out in the centre on both sides (like there's not enough space for the electronics). Which is a cheap design.

    LOL at your last comment, it’s rather unintelligible and immature to try to insult someone because they aren’t impressed by something you think is cool. Really supports what I said because people buying it to improve their esteem, if you can't handle criticism. Maybe that’s why it’s so big, so it gets noticed?

    Do I have to answer to you on how I look after my stuff? Actually I kept my ipod in a purse to protect it, after someone knocked the one I had before off a table, causing it to chip. A mobile phone I've had for 6 years was dropped many times (as happens to items you use on the move) and never once cracked, because it was designed for mobility. The ipod was flimsy and badly put together. I have to replace the headphones ~10 times and finally demanded a refund. Which was hell on earth because the store manager lied about the warranty not allowing refunds, which it very clearly does. Eventually got one after I wrote to the head office, but it was a lot of stress and bother, so I'm never shopping at Apple again.

    There’s no iworks available for the ipad in the UK yet. I watched a review on it and it’s very simplified. For presentations and word processing, it was just typing stuff, with no formatting. I couldn’t see an option for making fonts, sizes, bullet points (can’t have a presentation without these). The tool bars on the programs looked very basic, like for notpad on windows. I’m not referring to just writing notes and be able to send them. I could do that on a phone I brought in 2004. Just because it looks fancier on ipad, doesn’t make it any more sophisticated. It all seems about inserting and sending pictures, not proper business and academic work. Presentation files probably can’t be more complex, as then they’ll take up too much memory which the ipad doesn’t have. Also you can’t save these onto a USB stick to transfer to another computer, and people will look stupid coming into meetings with giant picture frames just to show a presentation when tiny finger size storage devices have been around for years. Nothing really beats Microsoft office, which is why every mac I've comer across have it installed. The ipad is not a replacement for a pc, yet is just as expensive. As I already said, it’s a just a gimmick and probably ipad2’s pulling point will be almost as much memory as a laptop 3 years ago and an usb socket.

    Anyway what on earth do you need 9 ipods and 2 iphones (rather random numbers) for?! There’s only been 5 versions of the ipod, which would mean you needed to replace some. Surely if they're so durable and great you'll hardly ever need to replace the ipods and never the iphone as it only came out a year ago.


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