My how time flies; it’s already been two years since the iPad was originally released, and what a ride it has been. I remember the storm of rumors around it beforehand, and when it was first announced, it was panned by critics as either a big iPod touch and questions abounde about what it did that you couldn’t do with anything else. I saw its potential, though, and wanted one right away. Apparently millions of others agreed as well and began using, in my opinion, one of the best computing devices ever made.
Like the iPhone before it, the iPad has changed the way many people compute. In fact, it doesn’t quite feel like computing anymore, which is a bold statement. It just feels natural, with a computing device that finally embraced and captured how things should interact, read, and how the Internet should work. The iPad thrust forth a fully seamless experience that has altered the way many people read, learn, study, and do practically anything any app will allow them to do.
Two years, three iPads and a lot of opinions
The Original iPad
I still love to see those that jumped on the iPad bandwagon with the iPad 2 completely pan the original iPad as underpowered and unusable. It’s just funny to me, because I relied on my original iPad every day until the third generation iPad came out. My original iPad has become a “family device” now that I have an third-gen model. Sure, there’s certain things the original iPad can’t do that the others can, but it’s still very much a viable, usable, and fun device.
The iPad 2
This update to the original iPad offered faster speed, front and back cameras, and a thinner flat profile. While I passed on the iPad 2, many millions more did not. Essentially, the iPad 2 built on the original iPad’s success, making a great device even better. I passed on it, simply because didn’t need another iPad and felt the upgrades weren’t enough to render my original iPad “obsolete” by comparison.
The iPad 2, though, is the iPad the majority of people have been exposed to and currently use. It was the iPad 2 that rounded out the iPad’s feature set to the point where those that used it on a day-to-day basis really couldn’t see much room for improvement. After all, if something is doing everything you want and need it to do, why do you need anything more?
iPad 3, errr.. The New iPad, (a.k.a. the 3rd Generation iPad or… the “whatchamacallit iPad”)
Retina. As far as I’m concerned, that’s all that needs to be said for what “The New” offers over “2”—and it’s a big deal. Sure The New iPad offers faster speed (mainly to drive the higher-resolution display), 4G cell capability (which is really fast), and a plethora of other features… it’s mainly the Retina display with it’s print resolution that makes what was already a great iPad, perfect.
It’s only been two years?
The iPad is one of those devices that once you start really using it, you practically use it everyday and it integrates into your “i” life. It seems like so much longer ago that the iPad has come out, and for many avid iPad users, computing any other way is unimaginable.
It’ll be interesting to see what Apple has up it’s sleeve for the iPad over the next few years. Will we see an iPad mini? I doubt it, but plenty of rumor pundits disagree. I think what you may see on the entry level side of things is a $200 iPad with a full size, but reduced cost screen (maybe plastic)-but will still be a full-featured one.
On the other end of the spectrum, I think you’ll see Apple building on the third-gen iPad incrementally. One interesting technology is haptic response wherein the screen vibrates to simulate texture on the screen. It’s hard to predict, but I know one thing is for sure—Apple is probably already two steps ahead, and we’ll just have to wait and see.
How has the iPad changed your computing behavior? Send your comment below.