Apple

Peter Cochrane's Blog: Apple's iPad - I'm buying one

Will the iPad succeed like the iPhone? The jury's out - but I want to play with one

Written in the bar at my hotel in Oxford and dispatched to silicon.com later the same day via a free wi-fi service.

The last time there was such ballyhoo about a tablet was when Moses was on Mount Sinai, only this time more people heard about it.

Unfortunately for Moses the web didn't exist at that time and it took a while for the message to get out. Not so for Steve Jobs - the news of Apple's iPad unveiling spread across the world in moments.

It all looks so iPhone in form and functionality, and of course the media reaction is almost identical. Coverage has been, well, comprehensive to say the least.

Mac devotes fell in love with it immediately, while the PC brigade went into rants of objection, citing the advantages of a real keyboard and the utility of notebooks and laptops.

So what do I think? The jury is out, and the market will decide.

I have to get my hands on one in order to 'feel the difference', but this much is evident: it is a different way of thinking about computing that might just transform browsing, gaming, newspapers, book reading and the paper print industry.

And I can guarantee that all the laptop, PC and e-book reader companies are at the drawing board right now designing their response while mumbling, 'why didn't we think of this?'

For sure the iPad is missing many of the technologies and features I would really like in a device - I presented my wish list in a recent blog.

I was really surprised it comes without a camera and 3G as standard, but then again the price point is such that like a lot of other folks I'm going to buy one just so I can play with it. I fancy it will be replacing all those multiple controllers in my lounge real quick.

Like the iPhone, I reckon the most important components are going to be the toolset and the user community creating apps, coupled with links to a music and bookstore.

And it won't be long before iPad versions two, three and four (etc) come along with more and more innovative features, and perhaps even some of those on my wish list.

This device could be a real business changer on many levels and is perfectly timed to catch and offset the downturn in iPod sales.

Smart tech, smart design, smart timing? We'll soon see!

About Peter Cochrane

Peter Cochrane is an engineer, scientist, entrepreneur, futurist and consultant. He is the former CTO and head of research at BT, with a career in telecoms and IT spanning more than 40 years.

Editor's Picks

Free Newsletters, In your Inbox