Until we get to the iPad problems, let me start with something else, because I’ve been “cooking” this article for almost three weeks now, and while I could find a lot of excuses for this delay, I won’t say anything in my defense. After all, nobody pays me to write on this blog, and when I do it, I want to deliver my best. The thoughts troubling me are related to Apple, but not exactly to the iPad. I was wondering… if Steve Jobs’ company comes up one day with a brick bearing the notorious logo, how many items would be sold?
Considering the above, you could say now I’ll bash the iPad and nothing more, but I’ll try to avoid doing that – I used Apple computers and I loved some parts,I hated others; I don’t use an iPod, because I found better value for my money; at last, I even found something better than the iPhone, and that’s all about it. Now, let’s move to those iPad problems, shall we?
First iPad problem: its price
Even in the United States, the iPad is priced at the same level as most low-end laptops. Yes, I said laptops, not netbooks! To make this even more interesting, in Europe, the iPad’s price climbs to the same value as mid-range laptops (the 32GB variant, for example, is sold at almost $1000 in some countries!). Oh, yeah, if we think about the Wi-Fi+3G versions… you can also add the 3G data plan’s costs (any AT&T fans around?)!
As I write this, the US prices of the whole iPad line are these (16/32/64GB, Wi-Fi/Wi-Fi+3G): $499/$629, $599/$729, and $699/$829. Ouch!
Second iPad problem: no Flash support
Here’s something that I would have used as a reason to bash the iPad two weeks ago. In the meantime, I came to my senses – ALL the browser crashes that I remember, no matter if we’re talking about Chrome, Opera, Firefox or another one, were caused by some Flash page, and I don’t have to tell you how high can get the CPU usage of a browser when accessing a Flash page! Sure, Flash pages may be fun, useful, a few years away from others in terms of design, but… I think the iPad can do just fine without Flash. Really, HTML5 is just around the corner,so why bother with Flash on the iPad?
Drawing the line, this is no problem to me, but I am sure that some people won’t get over it so easily…
Third iPad problem: weak Wi-Fi
More than just a few early iPad adopters reported problems with its Wi-Fi connectivity, like impossibility to connect to their routers or connection drops followed by the impossibility to rejoin the network. Well, this is something that happens to most devices with Wi-Fi capabilities, but you can always use a wired connection. Hey, wait… the iPad does not have any port to allow wired connections! What a pity… 😐
The good part of this little story is that Apple quietly acknowledged some of the Wi-Fi issues, but didn’t exactly help solving them, providing suggestions like “move closer to the router” being a no-brainer, if you ask me. Anyway, if you have Wi-Fi problems with your iPad and want to get up to date information about possible solutions, you should check this support article. Good luck!
Fourth iPad problem: no multitasking
In my opinion, this is the worst problem with the iPad, and I don’t think I have to tell you why. Even worse, I can’t see this going away with the help of a software update, although… you never know. Come on, Apple will release a software update to reboot the Universe in 2012, so they can add multitasking to the iPad in a snap, don’t you think? 😛
Later Edit: It seems the iPhone will soon get a lot of goodies in a software update, and the iPad will follow. As I write this, you can only multitask using the applications included in the OS, but not additional ones available in the App Store. Please correct me if I’m wrong!
Fifth iPad problem: no cameras
If the iPad would have had a camera, then I am sure that a lot of users would have instantly go “What is this crappy camera?” all over the Web, especially Apple haters who are not usually using the company’s products. This way, Apple avoided one problem, but ended up with another. Usually, a crappy camera is always better than no camera. In this case,adding some camera would have been really nice. Oh, well, maybe next time…
Sixth iPad problem: power/recharge issues and overheating
When we talk about a device facing sudden power offs, overheating and only recharging properly in certain conditions (like “only when connected to some USB ports”), all these problems are usually about the battery and related components, so I think we could fit all these iPad problems here. If overheating will have an impact on the reliability of the device in the long run, that remains to be seen. I can say the same about the frequency of these issues, so… I am waiting for first statistics and, of course, your comments, maybe after 10-20-50 of them we’ll get a better idea… or not. 😉
Seventh iPad problem: no “mainstream” connectors
No USB, no HDMI, no chance to add them later thanks to a software update. Enough said about it, I think.
Eight iPad problem: unreliable applications
I don’t know how did this happen, because I consider Mac OS X to be a pretty solid OS. On the other hand, I only used the desktop version, and not the mobile one, so those complaining about crashing apps on the iPad may be right, but let’s not forget that, in most cases, it’s either the user, either the program’s producer – not Apple, in most cases…
Ninth iPad problem: not for bloggers
The virtual keyboard may be cool, but you won’t get to bloggers’ Heaven with the iPad, and that should be pretty obvious, I think. On the other hand, if you just need to surf the Web and you don’t need to engage in a lot of typing, I am sure this little issue won’t bother you at all.
Tenth iPad problem: slow syncing
While some users claim they need 30 minutes to sync their iPads, this value goes as far as 7 hours, and 3 or 4 hours are pretty common values. Come on, is this device syncing with the entire Universe, or what? Oh, yeah, some reports also claim that syncing the iPad makes iTunes freeze, but this can be considered one of those unreliable applications issues…
Eleventh iPad problem: the screen
This may not be considered a problem by most people, but think about these facts: iPad’s LED-backlit with In-Plane Switching (IPS) display is less power efficient than OLED devices, while the e-ink screens used on eReaders (the Kindle, for example) are easier on your eyes. In the long run, I guess it would be better to have a Kindle, especially if you’re going to spend some time using the iPad/eReader…
Even more, I don’t think 1024X768 pixels is such a great resolution, since going wide would have been a better choice, at least according to quite a few people. Anyway, looking back at my own experiences with Apple products, the screen is usually one of the strong points, so… I am anxious to hear what you think about the screen – is it an issue or not?
Twelfth iPad problem: Apple’s closed ecosystem
Think about this – you have the freedom to choose whatever you like… as long as Apple also likes it, and the people behind that application went through the whole App Store approval process (it can be pretty painful, sometimes). In real life, people seem to trade freedom for a pale sense of security more and more, but what about this virtual world? Where are the terrorists? I know that Windows can be really annoying sometimes, but at least you can install whatever you want, from any source (with all the risks that come with this freedom, of course). After all, Apple is selling the iPad, not renting it!!!
Thirteenth iPad problem: the name (?!)
To be honest, I don’t see anything wrong with it, as long as Apple established a naming strategy that will remain standing for some time. The Apple car would be the iCar or iWheeler, the Apple-founded airline should be iFly or iRways (smart one, don’t you think?), and so on… Anyway, since more than just a few people considered this a problem, I decided to add this at the bottom of my list.
Good… so the iPad has been around for over a month now, but where will it go? Here’s what I think:
1. The iPad will never reach the success of the iPhone, simply because there are more people who need a phone than those who need… the iPad, and some problems with this first version won’t be fixed with simple software updates.
2. Second/third edition of the device will surely bring in a lot of fixes, making it as good as it was supposed to be in the first place (should we have an iPhone vs iPhone 3G match some day?), but some features will still be left out. I am sure Apple won’t add a memory card slot, but they’ll surely add one or even two cameras.
3. The iPad will remain chained to Apple’s App Store and AT&T’s services. Anyway, there’s always the jailbreak solution… and if you don’t like AT&T, wait for ASUS and the others to come up with their own iPads! 😉
4. As long as it sells well enough (and it will, I have no doubts about it), the price won’t drop. Sure, it may drop for old versions when the new ones will drop by…
5. Apple won’t be too happy to add HDMI/USB to the new versions. Why do that, when adapters sell pretty well (at ridiculous prices, too, I must add)?
Possibly the Next iPad – Rendering
Next stop – some iPad funny movies, but that will happen some other day, because I already passed the “Is this the iPad Problems Bible or what?” limit, and what I want to hear from you is opinions about the iPad problems above and your own problems – if any, not about the indecent size of this article! 😉