Early iPad reaction: 'It's just a giant iPod touch'

Twitter, blogs and Facebook users get the knives out

Apple's iPad

Apple's iPad

After hitting a grand slam with the iPhone, Apple can't be too happy with some of the early reaction to the iPad. On message boards, Twitter, blogs, and Facebook, a recurring theme has been to compare the device to a "giant iPod touch."

Considering none of the naysayers have ever handled an iPad, the comparison may seem harsh. But viewing the demo, it's not hard to see how people came to this conclusion. After all, the thing looks like a giant iPod touch, from the black-and-chrome exterior to the recessed start button. And, while Apple has introduced some new UI elements, such as drop-down menus, other basic features are based on the iPhone/iPod touch model, including the accelerometer, app store, some of the icons used for playing media, and, of course, the touch screen.

There are other criticisms as well. During the event, a comment left on the Industry Standard by reader David Kuan read:

"1 hr into the event ... and I am heading towards snoozeville. Here are my iPad not-so-good impressions thus far ....

1. Bezel is too large

2. 1/2 in is TOO THICK Even Kindle DX is thinner at 1/3 in

3. Full size QWERTY is nice but bad ergonomics when typing iPad on a flat surface

4. No SD slot for storage portability (A BIG MISS HERE!)

5. Phenomenal email? I must have dozed off during the "phenomenal" part

6. No camera? Sigh!

7. No FLASH support (MAJOR OUCH!)

8. IPS display means more power consumption and requiring backlight. Difficulty to read outdoors due to glare. OLED would be a much better choice but at this size it is yet to be economical for mass consumer target."

However, other people are very excited about the prospect of owning an iPad. There have been a huge number of iPad-related tweets saying "I want one," particularly after the pricing was announced -- the base $499 Wifi model seems to be within many people's budgets.

But the true gauge of the iPad will come when the devices ship in 60 days, and Apple releases sales figures later in the year. Wall Street thus far seems undecided, if Apple's stock price is anything to go by. It dipped to a low of about $200 during the beginning of Wednesday's demonstration, but the price had recovered to around $208 90 minutes later.

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Ian Lamont

The Industry Standard
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