Apple has been touting the iPad tablet as “revolutionary” since it launched the device on 28 January, but closer inspection reveals several glaring omissions
Apple has been touting its iPad since it was first announced a few weeks ago. But after the hype wears off and we take an honest look at the iPad, we quickly find that there are some major flaws with the company’s tablet device that it just doesn’t want us to know about.
When a consumer picks up the iPad expecting a top-of-the-line experience, they might be surprised to learn that it can’t quite provide that. They might be even more upset when they find out that the iPad isn’t as appealing as Steve Jobs wants the world to believe. So before you pick one up, let’s take a look at what Apple doesn’t want you to know about the iPad.
Hobbled web surfing
Although Steve Jobs didn’t talk about it during his keynote, the device’s browser doesn’t support Flash. That omission ensures that a large percentage of websites won’t work on the iPad. It also ensures that some elements of popular websites that don’t entirely rely upon Flash won’t work either. It’s a major problem.
Those who are hoping to work in iWork and surf the web at the same time will be disappointed with the iPad. Once again, Steve Jobs failed to mention that, due to iPad software limitations, users won’t be able to multitask. Being able to work with multiple programs is not only a desired feature in today’s tablet space, but it’s quickly becoming a necessity.
Where’s the video output?
Although the iPad will boast HD content through iTunes, a quick glance around the iPad reveals that there isn’t a video output slot, making it impossible for users to transfer video content to an HDTV or monitor. For now, it seems that the iPad’s video capabilities will rely only on iTunes
When a user receives an important email on their Mac and decides to print it out, they simply click the “print” button and do it. The iPad doesn’t boast that luxury. Although Apple is marketing the iPad as the device that can bridge the gap between the iPhone and the laptop, the company’s tablet computer won’t allow for printing to a connected device. It’s a major omission that could make some think twice about the iPad.
No DVD/Blu-ray drive
The iPad lacks an optical drive. Admittedly, the iPad is meant to be a mobile product that won’t replace a computer. But if Apple wants to market it as an entertainment product, wouldn’t it make sense to make it easy for users to view or rip movies and television shows on the device
The $499 version is not a deal
Some point to the iPad’s $499 (£318) price tag as a reason to pick up the device. Let’s be honest, the $499 version lacks 3G and it has the smallest available hard drive. The device’s price tag is great for folks who want to only use the iPad at home and won’t add much content to it, but the iPad is meant to be a portable iPod Touch that can house entertainment content. A 16GB hard drive with no 3G connectivity won’t adequately deliver that experience.
Reading won’t be fun
Since the iPad doesn’t offer E-Ink technology or an OLED (Organic Light-Emitting Diode)] display, reading on its display might be difficult for extended periods. It’s another feature that Apple has glossed over. Yes, the iPad’s technology allows for viewing e-books in color, but E-Ink is so successful as an e-reader technology because it mimics a real book and allows for longer reading periods without eye strain. The iPad will be like reading a book on a larger iPhone display. That’s probably not best for most readers.
Forget about USB
Although Steve Jobs touts the iPad’s many built-in features, what about all those peripherals that users might want to add to the device? Since it lacks a USB (and FireWire) port, connecting to peripherals won’t be so easy. Admittedly, Apple has said that the dock will be used for some add-ons, but that requires users to buy yet another device to get their products to work. Omitting a USB port was a major blunder on Apple’s part.
The apps won’t all work well
Apple spent considerable time with developers showing off applications for the iPad. It even said that every app in the App Store will run on the iPad without any extra tinkering on the developer’s part. That said, it conveniently glossed over the fact that any app that hasn’t been updated to work with the iPad won’t fit the device’s display. That’s a bummer.
There are potentially better products out there
Steve Jobs said the iPad was revolutionary during the iPad announcement. But further inspection reveals that it’s really nothing more than a larger iPod Touch. More importantly, it’s competing in a space where several products, including those from Dell and HP, might provide a better tablet experience. Of course, Apple doesn’t want users to know about the competition. But they might be surprised to learn that, when it comes to tablets, the iPad isn’t necessarily the best offering.