Reaction to the iPad
iPad announcement +18 hours and I have had a chance to read more detailed technical specifications and think this through. I am excited about the idea of a tablet computer and I think Apple has, as always, done a beautiful job with the hardware. Their device is a work of art and breaks new ground in terms of reduced weight and what can be done with touch screen technology. The interface, although not much different from the iPod touch or iPhone, is still breathtaking and sure to be an unparalleled user experience for the foreseeable future.
However, I am not going to purchase the iPad for the same reason I refuse to get on the iPhone bandwagon: Needless proprietary constraints. In the case of the iPhone it starts with only being offered on a single carrier…but it only gets worse from there. There are plenty of people who don’t care or don’t understand the technical and political implications of Apple’s refusal to remove their self-serving, proprietary constraints and that’s OK for them. I want the freedom to consume Flash content…or move files back and forth between my devices without being forced to use iTunes. For anybody that believes the nonsense about Apple not supporting Flash because it doesn’t work well…you are being tricked. They don’t support Flash because Flash is a content delivery mechanism Apple can’t monetize. Period.
So, I will wait. There is a whole crop of devices right on Apple’s heels. A number of them are going to run Android on top of a new processor that is generating a lot of buzz. This second wave of devices will come with freedom. Maybe it is the northeastern spirit in me, but I bristle at the thought of anything that interferes with my freedom of choice…particularly if it is a 16 ounce hunk of metal and circuits.
I want to say this…I am a fan of Apple. I have been for a long time. I have owned a number of their top end power PC’s for years. For some of the work I do there is simply no substitute. However, the way they have changed their consumer business model over the last few years has really disappointed me. It used to be all about the highest quality equipment and user experience…Now it is all about duping consumers into buying devices that force them to do business with Apple if they want content when they bring it home.