So Apple’s Conference just ended with announcement of the much fabled Apple Tablet, named the iPad. I’ll keep this short and sweet as I hadn’t set my expectations high unlike most people out there. I knew exactly what I expected of the device but have been surprised by a few things. Firstly I’m a major gadget geek, but instead of looking at the usability of devices I tend to be more interested in the hardware side of things, the internal components. That said, these was my predicted specs for the tablet prior to it’s announcement.
Two Tablet models:
- 10″ LED Backlit IPS Panel Widescreen feat a touch display and a resolution of 1024 x 768
- 3GS style Oleophobic coating to be present on the screen
- Wifi N ONLY wireless connectivity
- Bluetooth 2.1 with EDR Tech
- Assisted GPS (same as iPhone 3G/3Gs)
- 16, 32GB storage ability
- Dual Cortex A9 Tegra 2 SoC
- 2x USB ports
- Twin speakers and a Microphone
- 3.5″ Headphone connector
- Runs Mobile OSX (the same OS that is present on the iPhone’s and iPod Touch)
Tablet 2: All of the above with the following additions.
- 10″ OLED Widescreen display featuring the same details as Tablet 1.
- Built in iSight web camera
- Wifi N & 3G wireless connectivity
- 64, and 128GB storage capacities
Compare my guesstimate specs with Apple’s iPad specs and you’ll see I wasn’t too far off! Ideally I was expecting a 10″ touchscreen housed in a smooth aluminium body that presently encases present day Macbook Pro’s and Macbook Air’s. I had expected Mobile OSX to power the device, why not? The appstore despite being criticised heavily in every area has been a monumental success for Apple. It may be flawed in many ways having a system where you cannot effectively trial apps before purchase but at the same time it has been hugely successful thanks to a superb SDK that developers have access to.
Mobile OSX in my eyes was the perfect foundation for a tablet. I have to admit that I am not a fan of previous tablets, I have hated their swivel screens, which screams ‘BREAK ME’, and I have disliked the fact that these things ran a fully blown OS, Windows for the most part. In my eyes a portable hand held device shouldn’t have the complexity of a full OS, instead it should be instantly accessible and easy to use without too much underlying complexity. Mobile OSX as seen on the iPhone and iPod Touch was just perfect, so perfect that even my technophobe parents can use my phone with ease, whilst previous phones have just baffled them.
I wanted a flat panel that my parents could pick up, tap on icons and bring up films, and photos without indulging in complex, puzzling OS features that they don’t need e.g window min/max/close icons that adorn our application titlebars. Given that they can pick up my iPhone 3G and browse my camera roll easily scares the hell out of me – but they can do it, and they’re confident when using the OS…if only Apple could stick that onto a 10″ screen I thought…
It was obvious that Apple were going to demonstrate gaming on the slate pad, and whilst I am not a fan of iPhone gaming (due to poor battery life) I do appreciate what the gaming developers have done. For this reason I was under the impression that the device would be powered by the Tegra 2 SoC (system on a chip). Instead they’ve opted for an in-house 1GHz A4 SoC. I have previously touted 2010 as the year for mobile devices, and mobile apps thanks to processors such as the Tegra 2 arriving so I would love to see the A4 benchmarked against the competition as it would be the perfect chip for future software and intensive video demands. Sadly it would also cost Apple millions just to get the chip from nVidia, so there was a strong chance that this wasn’t going to happen anyway.
Do I want the iPad? There is no doubt that it’ll be an awesome device for my parents as they have easy access to all my iTunes content. First impressions on the device are good, but lets see how badly the UK gets ripped off on pricing, as no prices for the UK have been stated just yet. Besides…I think five computers in this house is more than enough.