After reading up a lot of the iPad presentation yesterday, before I wrote my last posting, I had a little bit of time left and actually also watched the video of the presentation of the iPad. And after having seen that, I actually wanted to write a rectification, because truly, I though personally it was one of the most dishonest presentations I have ever seen. I will explain to you why. The presentation that I saw was nothing more then a presentation of content, not of the actual machine.
Then again, I do understand why, and I like the cozy way the presentation took place. Steve Jobs also knows that what he presented was nothing more then a version of what he had already presented before with the iPhone and iPod Touch. True, the image of him sitting in the chair, holding the razor-thin iPad which of course is wonderfully designed, works and you cannot just tell a whole story about only the technique, but in this presentation I actually did not hear any real information about what is revolutionary. And of course, that is because it is not. It is bigger, better, but still an iPod Touch.
But what disturbed me the most was that I saw presentations of the photo browser, a Google maps based application, Agenda, Email… nothing impressive, nothing new. And to be honest, I thought actually it was underselling the product.
As an very experienced interaction designer I know typing on that keyboard is a killer, and not in the good way. Typing on a flat surface in the same angle as the monitor is killing for your wrists and your neck. Apple knows, which is why they also have to possibilities of hooking it up to other input means. But then it stops for me, it would be impossible for me to write emails, or even these blog-postings on that thing. And if I have to hook it up to a external keyboard, it is actually less user friendly than a laptop or a netbook, simply because I need to have the docking station next to me all the time to have my screen in an upright position while I have the keyboard on my lap.
The iPad is a nifty device, don’t get me wrong. With a stylus it would be perfect for me to make notes or draw sketches or concepts. I don’t need a laptop for that, hook it up first and launch it. For that kind of stuff I would love to have an iPad. But, I still miss the memory slot, so I can drag it into the airplane, put some digital copies on an SD and watch them in high quality in the airplane. And no, I would not be bothered so much by the 4:3 screen.
But I was absolutely disappointed in this presentation. I cannot help it, but the iPad deserved better. I think the hype feature comes in mostly through Apple fans and the fact that Apple knows better than who else to make a impression, because honestly, a Windows presentation is also something, well, not passionate.