By Joel Montgomery // 4 October 2010 // Related Categories: Product Information

Many of us will have an Apple iPad on our wish list for Christmas, but before you fork out over $600 on the latest gadget you should know what you're paying for.

1. It's great to relax with

Whether you're at the cafe or on your couch the iPad is great for checking email, surfing the web or reading an e-book. Like the iPhone, the iPad is a super-thin, beautifully designed, lightweight and easy to use device. You can get up to 10 hours battery life with normal iPad use.

If you're into reading e-books then we suggest you download "Kindle" from the Apple App Store to access Amazon's wide book selection. If you're a regular typist we recommend the wireless (Bluetooth) keyboard.

2. It can't replace your laptop

One of the biggest draw-backs of the iPad is that it does not support true "multi-tasking", meaning that you can't have multiple applications open at the same time (e.g. word processing, spreadsheets & the Internet). The iPad also doesn't support Adobe Flash which affects your Internet surfing experience because over 30% of all web pages use Flash. A laptop is a far more productive tool in the office environment.

3. It's not for specialised use

The iPad is a great companion for on-the-road sales reps, but the touch-screen and software is not equipped for specialised applications in industries such as medical, mining and the arts. The screen is not sensitive enough for accurate handwriting recognition and it isn't designed for car mounting or tough environmental conditions.

True specialised windows-based computers from manufacturers such as Motion Computing and Panasonic have ultra-sensitive touch-screens and they are capable of running complex applications in commercial and industrial environments. The iPad is not built for these markets.

4. Consider the 3G version

Upgrading to the 3G version of the iPad will cost you an extra $150 but we think it's a worthwhile investment. 3G allows you to connect to the Internet while on the road without needing a Wi-Fi signal. 3G unlocks the true power of this mobile device and the features you've come to expect from your iPhone (e.g. GPS and map functionality). You can subscribe to a 3G data plan from a local provider (e.g. Three) from as little as $15 per month.

5. It may be Apple, but is it the best?

The 9 inch iPad has a growing list of competitors such as Samsung's Galaxy (7 inch), Toshiba's W100 (2 x 7 inch screens) and Dell's Streak (5 inch). These alternatives to the iPad run an operating system called "Android" which some would argue is more powerful than Apple because you can truly multi-task and view websites that run Adobe Flash. Some such as the Samsung Galaxy have a camera and 3G as standard and are lower in price than the iPad. Apple claim to have over 100,000 compatible "apps" but more than 70% of these are also available on Android. Despite the technological strengths there is one thing the "Android" competitors don't have - the power of the Apple brand.

Wrap-Up

In summary the iPad serves its purpose as a personal device very well but it is not a replacement for the business laptop. If you're in the market for one then check out the competition before you buy and consider the 3G version.

Comments: 3 // Share:

J Tandon // 12/10/2010 4:18 PM

Great brief on iPad. I would like to add that consider the hassles of after sales service, availability of parts and dealing with Apple staff. Its easier for Bush to connect with God than the Apple staff. They are trained in arrogance and our nose up attitude.

Time to show Apple the door has now come.

J Tandon // 12/10/2010 4:24 PM

Great brief on iPad. I would like to add that before buying an Apple iPad, consider the hassles nightmares of dealing with Apple's after sales service, availability of parts etc. You can not even change its battery yourself. Apple's staff are trained in arrogance and 'our nose up' attitude.

Time has come to show Apple the door.

And why not wait for the blackberry gadget that is expected to be launched on 1st Jan 2011. Apple products are a lot of hot air and little substance.

J Tandon // 12/10/2010 4:25 PM

Great brief on iPad. I would like to add that before buying an Apple iPad, consider the hassles nightmares of dealing with Apple's after sales service, availability of parts etc. You can not even change its battery yourself. Apple's staff are trained in arrogance and 'our nose up' attitude.

Time has come to show Apple the door.

And why not wait for the blackberry gadget that is expected to be launched on 1st Jan 2011. Apple products are a lot of hot air and little substance.

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