I was watching Steve jobs’s ipad announcement keynote the few months back and a few minutes into it when the ipad slide first appeared ..I impulsively said ” they will sell it for $499 and this will change everything” . A few slides later I felt happy I was right with my price bet and I started thinking about what I think the device will do for us.
As we are now weeks from the device getting to market I thought I would put down my thoughts on how well the ipad will do.
The ipad IS the new “ipod” and “iphone” , a trendsetting device which will first define and then dominate the category of handheld content consumption devices.
At 499 it is the perfect internet reading device . Yes it will bring the internet to everyone!. Just as we all stopped using our CD collection once we could carry our albeit lower quality mp3 collections around with us. We will stop using our laptops and computers to consume our internet content on the ipad and other similar devices.
Multitouch is the best thing to happen to UI since windows and the mouse. Anyone who has an iphone and the kindle realizes how much more intuitive it is to slide across the screen and touch something and see it respond. It does seem like Apple with its custom silicon and ipad screen will dominate the innovations around multitouch as it gets integrated into more and more apps that work on this bigger screen. The new avataar of of iphoto and Mail.app it seems are so revolutionary in their approach to UI, that ipad apps will become the new showcases for killer apps across all platforms.
Despite the fact that it does not give you the refresh free comfort of e-ink. The fact that it can do video and the web natively will ensure that e-ink and kindles etc move away from mainstream towards the hardcore reader market. The ipad will become the reader of choice for everyone. It will be wrong to call this the kindle-killer , but for everyone who has not already bought a kindle or reads less than one book a week , they will prefer the ipad.
Perhaps contradictorily, the app store will retain its stranglehold over the iphone-ipad ecosystem. Just as everything from Yelp to Evernote to even gmail is now “just an app” for everyone. Teams of people will develop exclusive Apps for their portals , if they chose not to re-engineer their websites to feel native on the ipad screen. App development will now make more sense for everything from board games to radiology and imaging to photo-management and sharing.
If there ever was a non computer – web browsing device..this is it! It really will change the way we consume content, watch video , listen to podcasts , watch HULU , Boxee , read Ebooks , subscribe to podcasts, watch webcasts….you name it!. I believe the ipad is the next iphone and will be a worthy successor to the ipod and iphone as trendsetting devices that will be huge successes.