Even though the iPad doesn't officially go on sale until this Saturday, the early reviews are now beginning to trickle in from people who where lucky enough to get their hands on it and, so far, they all seem to be mostly all thumbs up!
For starters, Xeni Jardin, writing for BoingBoing.com, called the iPad, "a touch of genius", and stated that:
"It strikes you when you first touch an iPad. The form just feels good, not too lightweight or heavy, nor too thin or thick. It's sensual. It's tactile. And that moment is a good way to spot a first-timer, too, as I observed with a few test subjects. The dead giveaway for an iPad n00b is a pause, a few breaths before hitting the "on" switch, just letting it rest against the skin.
Flick the switch and the novelty hits. Just as the iPhone, Palm Pré and Android phones scratched an itch we didn't know we had—somewhere between cellphone and notebook—the iPad hits a completely new pleasure spot. "
USAToday's Edward C. Baig, for instance, went on to say that it was a winner and that it stacks up as a very formidable e-book rival indeed to the Kindle, and that it also was a very formidable rival to the likes of Sony and Nintendo in the hand-held gaming area.
Mr. Baig's points out how even mighty Microsoft, among many others, have all failed miserably, so far, in creating a tablet that people really found compelling or exciting, but one that, in his opinion, Apple apparently just may have finally gotten right.
Mr. Baig goes on to further state, that when it comes to the iPad, "Apple is rewriting the rule book for main stream computing." He also describes the iPad as being fun, simple, stunning to look at and blazingly fast, thanks in part to Apple's new A4 chip, and when it comes to the netbook craze, well, Mr. Baig goes on to further state:
"What does a successful iPad launch mean for traditional netbooks? They'll have to adapt or disappear — especially since their price advantage compared with the entry-level iPad isn't as great as some might have thought it would be.
His review, which by the way also includes a very nice video walk through, concludes by saying:
"Apple has pretty much nailed it with this first iPad, though there's certainly room for improvement. Nearly three years after making a splash with the iPhone, Apple has delivered another impressive product that largely lives up to the hype."
One of my all time favorite writers, the New York Times David Pogue, concludes his own personal review by stating:
"The iPad is so fast and light, the multitouch screen so bright and responsive, the software so easy to navigate, that it really does qualify as a new category of gadget. Some have suggested that it might make a good goof-proof computer for technophobes, the aged and the young; they’re absolutely right.
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."
When it comes to tech writers, well they don't come any bigger or better than the Wall Street Journal's venerable Walt Mossberg, who says, in his own personal review, that the iPad comes pretty close to being a real laptop killer!
Walt says that after playing with the iPad for hours and hours, over the past week, that he now firmly believes that not only can it change the direction of mobile computing, but do so in a very profound way!
Wow! What can I add to that?
One other thing that Walt found particularly interesting was Apple's claim regarding the iPad's battery life - it was actually some 15% better than what they even claimed it to be! Wow, now that has just got to be one hell of a killer feature, in and by itself. This was even true despite the fact that the iPad was constantly running, including playing movies on its huge and brightly lit LED screen! This is something that normally you would think would suck the dang, bloody life out of it, but happily it didn't!
In the end, Walt concludes his post by saying:
"All in all, however, the iPad is an advance in making more-sophisticated computing possible via a simple touch interface on a slender, light device. Only time will tell if it’s a real challenger to the laptop and netbook."
Considering how these first iPad reviews are basically all mostly positive and even glowing, I would tend to think that this, hopefully, is a very good sign that the future should bode well indeed for the iPad.
Another sign that definitely bodes well, is the fact that those super clever Germans also tend to apparently agree, since reports now indicate that they have already pre-ordered the iPad in huge and record numbers...... and at a rate that was some 3.5 times greater than originally expected! This amounts to a whopping 250,000 of them in good-old Germany alone!
The iPad certainly isn't perfect, of course, as these reviewers all tend to point out. However, consider this: it's just the very first of many more advanced models that are sure to follow, and you can bet your last pair of rose colored bloomers that these future models, just like that of the iPhone before it, will surely address many, if not all, of its so called missing features. Yes, newer models will definitely be offering up a host of newer and more powerful features, and all in slimmer, faster and much more powerful form factors to boot.
These early reviews, in conclusion, have certainly got me personally really stoked and excited, and I can barely now wait to get my grubby little paws on one!
And that's my 2 cents 4 this Thursday, April 01, 2010
iPad photo via: Apple