For a company like Studio Center that utilizes hundreds of Apple Products every day and whose halls are littered with “Apple Geeks”, a new Apple Product Launch is a REALLY BIG DEAL. Very little work got done for several hours as our staff stayed glued to their computer screens for the debut. Since it’s debut, I’ve spotted several around our studios but I am still undecided where the iPad fits with my iPhone, Mac Book, and iMac. From what I have read, it’s a terrific product and future upgrades could, in fact, be “Laptop Killers”. USB Ports, a little extra memory, and some compatibility tweaking are all that keeps the iPad from replacing the Mac Book for business or personal use. Will Apple kill off it’s own successful product line or keep the iPad just inferior enough to force you to want and buy both?
To get a more comprehensive review of the iPad, I tracked down our Production Supervisor and iPad Owner, Trent Toner for a quick Q & A between sessions.
Q: The iPad comes in 6 models, I believe. Which one did you get?
Trent: The WiFi only 64 Gigabyte version.
Q: What is the absolute best feature?
Trent: It is hard to say just one, but probably it’s form factor. The fact that I have a fairly full-fledged computer that I can toss on my car seat is amazing.
Q: Rate it 1-10.
Q: What would you change about your iPad?
Trent: I’d like it to be easier to transfer Word and Office documents to and from the iPad and I’d like broader file-type support for importing eBooks.
Q: Is the “64G WiFi/3G worth $829 or am I better off with my Mac Book?
Trent: It depends on what you want your computer for. I’m not going to run Pro-Tools on this thing, so for work it won’t replace a MacBook. But I honestly have not even turned on my iMac at home since I got it. All computing I do at home – web surfing – email- Facebook - gaming – all are faster and more fun on the iPad. For casual and social use it is totally a laptop replacement.
Q: Will it kill the “Laptop” or at least revolutionize the “Laptop” Space? How?
Trent: I don’t see it killing the laptop, but I totally see it replacing the laptop as the primary form of mobile computing. Again, there will be things like running video editing setups that you just won’t do on a tablet, but for 90% of portable users it could easily be a better and cheaper option. Its size weight and SUPER LONG battery life make a much better device for normal casual computing. In that sense I do see it revolutionizing the laptop space.
Q: Should I buy one today? Why?
If you have the money and have a tech fetish like I do, totally. If it is time for you to buy a new laptop for casual use, totally. It works amazingly well and is not buggy at all. I love mine and I am thrilled with the purchase. Not being tethered to my desk chair at home to catch up on current events or check email is wonderful. But from a practical standpoint if you already have a laptop and money is tight, wait until you have a need for a new machine. It is fun and an amazing piece of industrial design, but it does not accomplish any new tasks that you can’t get done on your current laptop. So if $499 is too much money for something that is not a necessity right now then I would say you should wait, but definitely take a good look at it when you need a new portable machine. It really will change the way you use your computer.