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Apple Releases the iPad! I release a squeal!

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If an iPhone, a PSP, a netbook, and your TV all fell into a Cuisinart, you’d be left with Apple’s new iPad.

Essentially, the iPad is a large-screen iPhone with lots of computing mojo…which is fine by us!  We’ve often said, “this app is great, but the screen is just too small.”  That limitation may have just disappeared.

Weighing in at 1.5 pounds, with a 9.7 inch display, the iPad is certainly small and light enough to bring on a shoot or into a crowded edit bay. It comes with between 16 and 64 megs of flash ram, and can run 10 hours on a single battery charge (according to Apple).

Naturally, it will run new software developed especially for the iPad’s larger screen, but it will also run your existing iPhone apps by expanding them to fill the screen.  Outstanding!  That means you’ll be able to use your favorite apps right away, with less eye strain… and then, a short time later, you’ll be using a revised, iPad friendly version. Sadly, we didn’t get the long-rumored webcam… so no on-location video conferencing.

It comes with a pile of nifty looking apps, but it will be 3rd party developers that truly turn the iPad into a mediamaker’s best friend.  Naturally, you can expect full coverage of those developments on HHH.

There’s plenty of web sites devoted to all the technical details, so I’ll leave that stuff to them.

The iPad starts at $499, and goes up to $829 for the fully loaded version (max ram and 3G connectivity). Apple claims they’ll start shipping in 60 days, so you’d better start saving your pennies now!

For more information about the iPad, swing by Apple’s web site and Gizmodo.

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10 Responses

  1. I think what is important about a product lime this is the potential that it opens up in the world of mobile computing. It willbe very interesting to see how it evolves over the next decade in the way the iPod has. Plus I’m looking forward to seeing what competing products pop up in response to this. Needless to say, I can see myself using one of these on set. Could turn out to be extremely useful!

  2. I’m having trouble seeing the value of this. It’s like an iphone or ipod touch, except removing the one thing that I really like about the iphone–its small size. I can carry it in my pocket, have it with me all the time. I don’t have to go look for it when I want to check email, it’s just always with me. This ipad is too big for that, and will no doubt require a case to protect it when on the road, and that makes it no better than a laptop.

    And yet I still want one. 🙂

  3. I am unsure of ths one. I think I would of much rather seen a real tablet computer, not just a "honey I grew the iphone" iPad.

    I wonder how long before we see other "tablets" coming along running windows that offer full computing power at the same price?

    Basically it is giant iPod Touch.

  4. Michael, I totally agree. By itself, the iPad is just another gizmo. But the potential is there. And so is the creative community. It wouldn’t surprise me if you were using this (or something like it) on set within 10 months after its release. Fingers crossed.

    DS, I’m working on a list of possible iPad uses for production. Maybe I’ll find one that sways you. Maybe not. Like you, my iPhone is always with me, and I don’t see the iPad taking its place.

    Billy, terrific point. It won’t be long before there are palm-sized PCs. But, the reason I’m willing to give the iPad a go is because of its simplicity. I spend WAY too much time managing my computers — moving files, installing drivers, fixing incompatibilities. I haven’t had to manage my iPhone at all. Turn it on… it works. It’s the same reason I don’t ever want to see a Windows boot screen in a cockpit. Keep it simple.

  5. Taz,

    I agree with the simplicity of it. I just wonder if they were short sighted in going with the iphone OS instead of a scaled down OS X app? I mean how cool would it be if it was running OSX and Adobe was able to do an iPad version of CS4 or an iPad version of final cut that you can quickly edit together shots for an offline while on set and then send the file to your computer at home…

    I just worry that it may have built in limits because of the OS.

  6. Billy,

    What you’re describing already exists… sort of… kinda.

    The iPhone is based on OS X, but it’s closed to user modification. So theoretically, with the improved horsepower of the iPad, a developer like Adobe can still deliver a mobile-version of CS4 today. But by keeping that OS concealed from the user, it’s less likely that things are going to get all fouled up.

    Believe me, if anyone ever tried to diminish my ability to dig around the innards of my Mac’s OS, I’d lock them in a closet. But, when it comes to a must-work-in-the-field device, I’m Ok with a closed system. The power of a computer is in there… but the do-it-yourself access isn’t. I’m willing to go with that for now.

    Besides… how long will it be before someone hacks a version of Snow Leopard to boot on this sucker? And then… a Mame emulator… and then, all will be right with the world.

    -Taz

  7. And you get Apple’s version of high definition video, 720p! Maybe it’ll catch-on if we try it again.

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