Apple unveils iPad tablet computer | iLounge News

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Apple unveils iPad tablet computer

Apple today unveiled its new iPad, an iPhone OS-based slate tablet computer capable of running “almost all” of the apps available in the App Store, as well as new apps tailored specifically for the device. The iPad physically resembles an oversized iPod touch, with a 9.7-inch, 1024-by-768-pixel screen dominating the front and a black bezel surrounding it. The back is made from a solid piece of aluminum, with a 30-pin dock connector and speaker on the bottom, and volume, sleep/wake, and headphone ports around the other sides.

“iPad is our most advanced technology in a magical and revolutionary device at an unbelievable price,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “iPad creates and defines an entirely new category of devices that will connect users with their apps and content in a much more intimate, intuitive and fun way than ever before.”

Photos of the new iPad tablet computer can be found in our Flickr photostream. Also available is a standard 10-minute Apple iPad interface walkthrough video on YouTube, or watch a higher-resolution, 12-minute version of the video on Vimeo. We’ve posted a third version of the video in 720p HD on Vimeo!

The device runs an advanced version of iPhone OS that allows it to run most of the apps currently available on the App Store, as well as modified apps that take advantage of the higher-resolution screen. Non-optimized iPhone applications can be run as coded in a small box in the middle of the screen, or can be run in “2X” mode, with the iPad scaling their resolution up to match the larger screen. The slide to unlock screen remains largely unchanged, while the main home screen has been enhanced to offer user-selectable backgrounds and an OS X-like reflective dock for the bottom row of applications. In on-screen demos, apps have pop-up menus, resembling those on the iPhone, but enclosed in their own hovering boxes as to not obstruct the rest of the screen. The iPad also employs an on-screen QWERTY keyboard that is described as “almost life-sized,” and, as with the iPhone and iPod touch, most specialized applications work in both vertical and horizontal orientation.

The iPad will offer enhanced versions of apps controlling its music, photo, video, and mail features, with the music app now resembling iTunes more than ever, complete with a selection of playlists and Library selections off to one side and differing views in the main column. Similar upgrades to the photo, video—which now includes both standard- and hi-definition YouTube—and mail applications were also shown. Apple also announced iPad-specific versions of its iWork applications, Keynote, Pages, and Numbers, which are discussed more in-depth in a separate article. Also unique to the iPad is the new iBookstore, which offers a number of titles, both consumer and educational, all presented full-screen with page-turning animations and selectable font and size.

The iPad’s hardware includes the 9.7-inch IPS LED-backlit LCD display, an internal battery good for up to 10 hours of battery life, 802.11n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 2.1 EDR wireless networking, a speaker, microphone, compass, accelerometer, and a custom 1GHz Apple A4 processor, which helps boost the battery life. Apple will be offering 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB versions of the iPad, both with and without microGSM 3G networking, for $499, $599, and $699, respectively, for the non-3G versions, and $629, $729, and $829, respectively, for 3G-enabled models. The 3G versions will support speeds up to 7.2 Mbps on HSDPA networks, and will also offer assisted GPS location capabilities. In addition, the company has worked out a deal with AT&T to offer no-contract 3G wireless data at the price of $15/month for up to 250MB of data, and unlimited data for $30 per month, either of which can be activated directly from the device. Wi-Fi-only models of the iPad will be available in 60 days, or at the end of March, while 3G-equipped models will be available in 90 days, or near the end of April.

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Comments

81

To everyone that thinks this is an ipod on steroids and a great replacement for your ipod touch i ask you:

1. Do you ever walk to work and look through your music collection on the way, and then put you ipod in your pocket?

2. Do you ever stand in line at the supermarket and make a to-do list?

3. Do you own a car and listen to music from your ipod on a long trip?

The answer for me at least is yes, and good luck being able to to the above with an ipad, and not look totally stupid.

It only works as a sexed up eReader, it can’t replace your iphone/ipod cause it’s too big, and it can’t replace your computer cause it still has to be synced to something.

Posted by Dan on January 28, 2010 at 1:05 AM (PDT)

82

Disappointed! No stylus?!  I can’t jot down notes on my iphone or laptop, the iPad would have been perfect.  And i don’t mean handwritting-recognition crap, I hate those.  I don’t understand why nobody’s made a electronic replacement for pen and paper, that’s where the revolution is!!!  Apple missed it!

Posted by dorianG on January 28, 2010 at 2:49 AM (PDT)

83

Excellent.
Looks like I won’t have to wait to get mine as so many are underwhelmed. I’m so glad Apple didn’t have a start price of $799 and all the stuff some want but most don’t need.
Flash would have been good. That’s about it. For the rest, they didn;t reinvent the wheel they just made a great piece of hardware with the usual excellent software included.
I’m in. The apps I love on my touch will be even better on this and the hardware will allow some superb apps in the future.

Posted by David Morley on January 28, 2010 at 4:17 AM (PDT)

84

@Tim: The no multitasking is inherent to the iPhone OS. Everything except the OS and a few “special permission” processes is killed whenever you switch to a new task. It’s a key part of how it looks so speedy when, knowing Apple, it’s probably using all of 512MB RAM.

Had Apple actually pushed the OS into true multi-tasking where multiple apps could occupy the memory space at once you can bet it would have been touted as a feature. Instead, every single video and demo I’ve watched shows the same behavior as the touch/iPhone.

The bright side is if this thing becomes a success, it’s going to push Apple into making the iPhone OS (wonder if they’re going to get around to changing the name now) in something more robust than a pretty version of Windows 3.1 (yes, that IS how the iPhone OS operates wink).

Posted by Code Monkey in Midstate New York on January 28, 2010 at 5:58 AM (PDT)

85

I can’t wait to get my hands on one. My main use will be reading and browsing away from my desk. Looks perfect for that. I do that now on my Touch. But the larger screen size of the iPad combined with the compactness and portability is a perfect combination for me. And I know it’s only a matter of a short time before my next need is filled, a decent writing app. Great work Apple. Please just open it up to other carriers.

Posted by Steve on January 28, 2010 at 7:32 AM (PDT)

86

Personally I think they hit the nail a little crooked and maybe bent it, but they hit the nail.  I’m a poer user, and have a MacBook Pro and an iPhone.  To me, this is a non-starter.  However, to my wife, who still uses an old lampshade iMac for email and browsing, this is the perfect product - it lets her do everything that she needs, and costs half as much as a new iMac ... plus it’s very portable.

No flash?  As a web developer, I say: good.  It’s the last of the dinosaur vendor-owned web ‘standards’.  If more companies woke up and smelled the coffee on this one, HTML5 would be here already.  Oh, and if designed couldn’t fall back on flash for ‘modern effects’ and had to use standards, IE6 would die also (which is another dream of any web designer).

Now, in 6-12 months, when they add the camera, more storage, native iChat, a global dictionary, and handwriting input ... well, then I’ll buy one too, because I travel a lot and i write a lot.  A decent e-book reader with built in (easy) editing and communication would be awesome for me.  Until then, I’ll use my macBook which has all those features already.

Posted by penkendo on January 28, 2010 at 7:42 AM (PDT)

87

I will agree with the post that you guys are missing the POINT of the IPAD, for those that want a computing powerhouse then look at the imacs or macbooks. It’s cater to working and school work.

If your looking for a mobile device on the go Smarthpone or media player. Iphone,Itouch, and Ipod.

For a ALL INCLUSIVE CASUAL media hardware. That’s what the IPAD is for. It’s for Browsing,listening to music, watching movies, books, reading emails. Casual use guys.

IT really depends in what your using to. I commute to work by train and was looking for a ereader and something to play casual games or watch a show or two.

It’s not ground breaking, yes I realize that but why redo something when it works? You also have to realize the world is in a RECESSION. It could be a smart idea for Apple to introduce something that is AFFORDABLE. Sure they could have done a bunch of R&D, but are people going to go in mass to buy a 1K product with the current economy? Steve could have easily added OLED to make the IPAD as thing a paper but really, at this current time it’s not the right marketing environment.

Posted by Chin on January 28, 2010 at 7:42 AM (PDT)

88

@89, Gods I hope not. Color e-ink devices (i.e. Kindle 3) should be ready to go the later half of 2010. Apple can spin things however they want, but if reading on a backlit LED screen were really all that, we’d all just be reading on our laptops and computers already. The Kindle and similar devices have worked because they provide a very good approximation of the printed word for our *eyeballs*. Once color e-ink becomes available (and the price drops below $300), these sorts of devices will be ready for the mainstream and magnitudes better than any iPad could be. If Apple kills these sorts of devices by spinning the same reading experience (sans the fancy app to make it flip like a book) that has been available, literally, for over a decade, that will truly be a sad consequence of the iPad.

——————

At any rate, after sleeping on this device I’ve come to the conclusion my outrage is not so much because it’s so mediocre. It is what it is: a very, very basic tablet “computer” with an enlarged iPhone OS and simple, proprietary apps. My outrage stems from Apple’s spin of the tech, this was in my email this morning: “Our most advanced technology in a magical and revolutionary device at an unbelievable price.”

No, just no. It’s not advanced, it’s not magical, and it’s not revolutionary, and it’s not at an unbelievable price unless you just can’t believe they have the cojones to charge $500 for a 16GB “computer” with processor speed and RAM levels typical in a computer from a decade ago in 2010. If Apple weren’t hyping this limited but OK for what it does toy so much, I don’t think I would have batted an eye at the “iPod touch plus”, but when you simply hype to the point of outright lying, I am bugged, particularly in light that knowing the mass market, this thing is going to sell like mad and potentially kill better tech like the Kindle.

Posted by Code Monkey in Midstate New York on January 28, 2010 at 8:27 AM (PDT)

89

OK, someone deleted the post I responded to, but the above is clear enough in the absence of that smile

Posted by Code Monkey in Midstate New York on January 28, 2010 at 8:28 AM (PDT)

90

Pretty typical Apple release.  The announcement seems a bit underwhelming after all the speculation and hype in the blogosphere, but I still want one.  Why?  Because I use my iPhone all the time around the house for surfing, eMail, FaceBook, eBook reading, and media consumption.  If I could get a device that can do these with iPhone’s ease of use on a bigger screen, then I’m in.  I might have been happier with a 6-7” screen, but 10” is ok.  Sure a netbook or any real computer does a ton more, but I spend my whole work day on real PCs, and I don’t need another device that needs antivirus, constant patches, and somehow just operates slower and slower over time.  When I need to do real PC stuff (or Mac stuff), I have full computers for those.  For the light tasks I mention above a real computer is overkill but an iPad might fit nicely.  Will need to try one out first of course.

Posted by Dyvim on January 28, 2010 at 8:35 AM (PDT)

91

I listen to my iPod at work, yes.  No I do not put it in my pocket at work, I listen to it at my desk.  iPad will work fine for me on this.

I don’t create to-do lists at the grocery store.  I create to-do lists at home on paper and take that to the store.

I listen to music in my car yes.  I think the iPad will have no problem sitting in my passenger seat or on my console.

Posted by Chris on January 28, 2010 at 9:11 AM (PDT)

92

@92- I never thought dealing with a broken iPhone screen was bad.  We have 4 iPhones around our home going back over 2 years, all without cases and some handled by our 3-year-old and haven’t had any incidents yet.  In my experience, the iPhone screen is quite tough and durable.  Sure if you toss it onto a sidewalk, road, or stone floor it’s going to break, but so far I haven’t been prone to that.  It’s not like any laptop or netbook aside from a ruggedized one would fare any better with such accidents.  So as long as the screen is as durable as the iPhone, I should be good to go.  Of course the bigger screen may end up being more fragile, which could be an issue.

Posted by Dyvim on January 28, 2010 at 9:18 AM (PDT)

93

@94 - i’m happy YOU never experienced this.  unfortunately, my comment wasn’t aimed at Dyvim and his personal experience.  it was aimed at the numerous broken iPhone screens out there.  i’m sure you can look up many reported experiences on this.  that’s not even disputable.  what i’m saying is, the flaw is inherent in the design.  you offer a touchscreen that is not cheap and is necessary to operate the device.  the environment the device is used in is very demanding, so you need to take that into consideration when designing a product and protect it.  you don’t offer a replacement in your warranty even though this is obvious.

protecting the screen is just basic industrial design - know your user and the environment the device will be used in.  it IS prone to damage when you don’t have a surrounding bezel (can be minimal) raised above the screen, therefore protecting the screen in some instances.  again, this is just a basic design fundamental that is sacrificed for the aesthetic.  it looks great, don’t get me wrong, but i just feel slighted by the lack of effort with protecting an expensive device.

Posted by b real on January 28, 2010 at 9:30 AM (PDT)

94

Since AT&T has no service plan in my area, (though they have service for their roamers) it will be interesting if 3G will be available to me should I decide to buy that version of the iPad.

I wish that people would stop the name calling in their posts. You can respect someone even if you disagree with their opinion. Have an adult conversation, please.

Posted by Steve on January 28, 2010 at 9:30 AM (PDT)

95

... and if you are going to sacrifice for the aesthetic, then at least cover more in your warranty.

Posted by b real on January 28, 2010 at 9:32 AM (PDT)

96

@95- Of course it’s my experience and my opinion- I said as much.  That’s what we’re all doing in these comments- expressing our opinions.  I happen to think that the numerous accounts of broken Touch\iPhone screens is not really such a major issue considering that there are 75 million of these devices out there.  Obviously there are going to be quite a few incidents of broken screens, but I disagree with you that it’s a design flaw or some sort of broken screen epidemic.  On the contrary, I think broken screens are relatively rare compared to the number of devices out there.  You’re probably right that raising the bezel a bit would reduce the number of incidents even further.

Posted by Dyvim on January 28, 2010 at 9:45 AM (PDT)

97

@98 - you’re right, i wasn’t trying to imply an epidemic.  plus i’m sure apple is alot better at that now than before.  they may even take that into account with the iPad warranties, we don’t know yet.

i should note that although i have some harsh criticisms for this iPad, i probably would buy one if it had all the improvements we’ve all mentioned above and still fell in the $500 - $800 price range.

Posted by b real on January 28, 2010 at 9:54 AM (PDT)

98

I found the shortest summary yet for most of how I feel about it in the reader comments over at engadget: “A solution in search of a problem”.

Posted by Code Monkey in Midstate New York on January 28, 2010 at 11:11 AM (PDT)

99

My 15” MacBook Pro is about to turn 3 years old. A few weeks ago I figured I’d start shopping for a new MBP. The iPad gives me pause. It’s started me thinking about how I use my various computers. I have the MBP for personal use and a work laptop from Dell. I have a Hackintosh HTPC, a 1st gen iPod touch and an iPhone 3GS.

My MBP is still running strong and it’s like a comfy old shoe, so I won’t be giving it up unless it breaks (knock on wood). I am looking at the iPad for those 80% of use cases for me in which I don’t need anything more than browsing and media consumption. The much heavier MBP can stay on the desk to be used for content creation and such.

The only question for me at this point is whether or not I’ll be able to jailbreak the iPad. I’m guessing that the jb community won’t be so heavy to do that since the device is unlocked and uses the micro SIM. Still, this is a new platform and I look forward to the third party stuff - both accessories and apps - that will come out for it.

Posted by marinelayer on January 28, 2010 at 11:45 AM (PDT)

100

the truth is that no one will buy is as
you can do more on a Iphone.
To expensive for something that only new feature is to read books on a big screen.
No USB port.
No Multitasking
No Camara
Paying for a data subscription on ipad and iphone to expensive (not to sure about that one)
whose mad enough to pay for this to read a book.reading a book off a screen has got to strain your eyes surely.
over 75 million people have a iphone or itouch why buy something which is the same but bigger.

i know if were steve jobs id be pissed of now cause i would have wasted years of my life rebuilding a big itouch/ereader.

I also expect idiots to buy this because its apple and its shiney
i do not hate apple even thought it may seem so im just being honest.i would have bought a touch screen mac something to replace my macbook but still having some of the feature an iphone has.

Posted by ryan remer on January 28, 2010 at 12:07 PM (PDT)

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