As soon as my iPad turned on out of the box, with a full charge, It was clear that most of what’s been said about the iPad is true. Brilliant screen, gorgeous design, blazing fast OS and the battery life is 10+ hours. Web pages and books look incredible, and the extra screen real-estate eliminated any issues or concerns I had about all all touch screen device. For some tasks I actually prefer the no keyboard touch screen to my laptop.
The hardware is top notch, but It’s the two main shifts in the iPad OS that is at the heart of Apples mobile computing evolution.
1) NO TRADITIONAL FILE STRUCTURE
A system as powerful as the iPad with no file structure access showcases Apples commitment to a unique mobile OS strategy. Applying iPod like simplicity to the entire mobile computer experience is a new trick. Not smaller and mobile, but completely different.
At its heart, There is no HD, root folder or any access into the device other than icons on the home screens. This takes a while to get used to if your thinking you may use the iPad to replace your laptop. The iPad doesn’t let you connect with the files on other devices or organize them the way you are used to on your desktop. Each app keeps its data together in its own system. I’m intrigued by this OS concept and evolution, but there needs to be a way to merge access to file structures somewhere or you cant organize things by topic. No drag and drop and the basic folder concept is gone.
2) CLOSED NETWORK
The list of things you should be able to do but can’t is long. The iPad is closed off in many ways. No streaming to AirTunes, access to my iDisk, no synching with other macs on my wireless network, no synch to iPhone, and the iPad wont show up on my wireless network to any of my other networked apps. I have three macs on my network, yet i have to connect the iPad, with wires, to only one master Mac, and use itunes to synch media and files. No drag and drop. No folders.
Overall the iPad has a closer emotional feel than most laptops. Is so responsive to your touch. This is not a sub compact laptop with a touch screen in a fancy shell. iPad is for fun first, ideas, not serious work. A portable easy to use marvel, for entertainment, reading, games, surfing the web, and communication.
And its just the beginning. Will the iPad mobile roadmap keep the system so closed, and blocked off from existing file structures in the sky, or is this just a preview of a whole new ecosystem?