Watching the presentation by Steve Jobs.
It struck me that he’s cleverly position the iPad as the Answer to a Question.
Couched in these terms, I can see how Apple has managed to convince itself that the iPad is better than a Netbook.
Browsing – easier to browse with a tablet than a laptop on the couch.
Email – I think it’s a tie here. Easier to read using a tablet but harder to write without a real keyboard
Photos – Being Apple I’m sure iPhoto on the iPad will be great, but is it really better than Picasso or others? Perhaps they are alluding to the touch interface…
Video – It has a better video card which can decode HD video but Netbooks are catching up…
Music – iPod/iPhone would beat it so not true that iPad does it better than a smartphone/laptop but yes, obviously easier to listen to music from a tablet than a laptop/Netbook.
Games – Disagree, I hate the virtual joypads on the iPhone and will hate them on the iPad too, unless they sell a joypad attachment.
eBooks – Looks (sarcasm) better than on the Kindle but people are saying that being so bright will actually hurt your eyes to read it for long.
So you can see that overall, there are good reasons for Apple to think that they have a “game-changer” but it’s basically a tablet with good video decoding and a smaller ambition. Think Mobile Internet Device rather than laptop replacement.
And I think they’re right. Just like people talked down the iPod when it was first released (Creative had better sound and a bigger capacity but the iPod was more useable) or the iPhone (other smartphones are “more” capable, less restrictive – app-wise and with regards to multi-tasking).
But those two devices still went on to storm their respective categories. The iPad however is trying to create a new category or market (see article) as there is no tablet market to speak off (it’s too small to be considered a market now).
It’ll be up to the Average Joe to decide if this is going to fly, but if it does, expect Apple’s share price to reach at least US$300!