Today, Apple's CEO Steve Jobs took to the stage to introduce a new device named the Apple iPad.
Jobs began by revealing that Apple has reached 250 million iPod sales to date. He then revealed that "Apple is the largest mobile devices business in the world today." Moving on throughout Jobs speech he questioned whether there is room for a third category device in-between a laptop or a smart-phone. Jobs then mocked competitors for investing in netbooks and immediately revealed the iPad.
Jobs went on to demonstrate several features including browsing, Photos and built-in slideshows. The iTunes store is also built in and the usual suspects of a mail, contacts and calendar applications are available. Jobs also demonstrated the maps application and its location features.
YouTube HD support is also included and Jobs demonstrated various videos during his keynote. After the video demonstrations Jobs moved onto the specifications:
Later in his speech Jobs priced up data plans for the iPad over 3G, AT&T will be offering the following:
The iPad will be available in two months time for the WiFi only version and three months time for the WiFi and 3G version. Pricing of the devices will be:
Re: Apple iPad
Is the iPad a Flop
So far, the reaction to Apple's iPad has been very mixed. For some, the is a deal breaker, while others bemoan that Apple still doesn't allow multitasking on its iPhone OS and that Safari still doesn't support Flash. Others, however, are excited about the iPad's potential as and. Here at ReadWriteWeb, opinions are still mixed as well. Reactions among our writers range from advising people to to giddy excitement about the prospect of a better couch-surfing device
Tech Pundits: Mixed Reactions
All of the tech pundits who attended the launch event and actually used the device for a few minutes were impressed by the iPad's speed. John Gruber, who also wrote one of the most of the iPad launch so far, went as far as to argue that Apple's A4 processor is the iPad's most revolutionary feature.
Walt Mossberg is about the iPad's potential. Mossberg says that the software "looked impressive," but also notes that the virtual keyboard "may be a liability." In the New York Times, David Pogue writes that just calling the iPad a big iPod touch , and that the iPad "as an e-book reader is a no-brainer." Pogue also cautions critics that it's too early to draw any conclusions. Nobody, after all, has really used the device yet and we haven't seen any iPad-only apps that really push the device to its limits.
Stephen Fry puts the launch and notes that quite a few pundits expected Apple's iPhone to be a flop as well. MG Siegler, on the other hand, looks forward and that holding the iPad is "like holding the future" (if you are already used to the iPod touch and iPhone).
A Paradigm Shift?
and Slate's take a slightly different angle. Both argue that the iPad will represent a paradigm shift in how we look at our computers. Manjoo lauds the iPad's interface and ease of use and thinks that using the the iPhone represents a breakthrough in doing away with the old multi-window desktop metaphor. Carr writes that the success of the iPad is not a sure bet, but also argues that "whether it finds mainstream success or not, there's no going back; we've entered a new era of computing, in which media and software have merged in the Internet cloud."
Indeed, just like the iPhone changed our expectations of what mobile phones should be able to do, the iPad might just change our expectations of how laptops should work and what they should look like.