Monday, April 05, 2010

iFad, iPad or iGilette

Only when you live under a rock, you are unaware that Apple started selling in the USA the iPad. As a marketing campaign it is a text book success that is likely to be studied for some time.

For me it is a truly hyped product, with a computer press that is bought and sold on the idea that the iPad will be the saviour of the press industry. The iPad being the vehicle that sells its content.

Apple sells closed systems. It has shown with its iPhone the extend of its control to ensure that only those products that meet Apple's strategy will be available. As the objective is profit, open and free information is not in Apple's interest; there is no margin.

The iPhone has had several iterations without providing language support for languages like Hindi, Malayalam... Given that the iPad is associated with paid for content, this may change. It is not the need of people but the need of industry that will be served.

There are two reasons why I will not buy an iPad; the most relevant is that I prefer to read my books in bath.


Sage said...

"There are two reasons why I will not buy an iPad; the most relevant is that I prefer to read my books in bath."

Well put.

Axel Boldt said...

I played with an ipad for a while yesterday, and I noticed that editing Wikipedia articles is next to impossible using the supplied Mobile Safari browser. Once you are inside the edit text box, the ordinary scroll gestures don't work anymore. The only way I could find to scroll up and down is painfully slow: you need to tap and hold to open the magnifier, and then pull the finger down past the edge of the edit box. It will scroll at a rate of about three lines per second.

The Wikipedia apps in the app store I tested don't allow any editing at all.

Another thing: if you search for "Darwin" in the ibook store, you'll find only the pay version of the Origin of Species. The free Gutenberg project version is there, but hidden.

Axel Boldt said...

Recently I learned that there is in fact a way to scroll in text boxes on the ipad. It´s an undocumented feature: use two fingers to scroll. With this trick, it´s reasonably painless to edit Wikipedia on the ipad.

I don´t think it´s possible to edit Wikipedia on the iphone or the ipod touch right now, however.