If you're on the fence about Apple's new iPad that was just released today, you'll want to watch our review to see their latest creation in action. You've doubtless read early reviews so we don't spend a lot of time telling you what you already know about the iPad. Update: To read our full review here is the link: http://www.mobiletechreview.com/iPod/iPad.htm
Instead we focus on iBooks, the Amazon Kindle Reader app, streaming video using the Netflix app, playing games and more. We also run games that are designed for the iPhone so you can see how good those actually look, despite the stretching.
With an entry price of $500 going all the way up to $829 for the top of the line (not yet released) 3G version, this is moderately expensive toy. Yes, it's pretty much a giant iPod touch with a really fantastic IPS 9.7" capacitive touch screen. No you can't copy any old file to it as you would with a tablet PC or a smartphone-- most content is loaded via USB cable and iTunes, just like the iPhone. You can download apps, movies, music and books directly from the iTunes Store app on the iPad. We tried using File Magnet to load our own PDF and ePUB books but the File Magnet viewer is still iPhone optimized so PDFs weren't readable and it had no idea what app to associate ePUB files with. Bummer.
The iPad's WiFi is fast and has good range and battery life so far is pretty good (though perhaps not quite up to Apple's claims). We plugged the iPad into our 27" iMac for syncing and it didn't charge at the same time. Hmmm.. Fortunately a compact charger is included. You don't get stereo earbuds or a wipe cloth (a shame for a device this expensive).
Do you need an iPad? Probably not. It doesn't do the job of a computer, tablet PC or a smartphone. Do you want one? Probably. It's extremely attractive, fun and sexy. And just because it's an overgrown iPod Touch, that doesn't mean it isn't a different experience. The iTunes store looks like the desktop computer version more than a mobile version, newspaper and magazine apps from the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and NPR are perfect from a design and use perspective. They look a lot like the printed version but with rich color, video (via mobile YouTube) and responsive touch control. Just tap on an article to read more from the front page. Sweet.
Here's our video review, and our full written review will follow in a day or two.
-------------------- Lisa Gade Editor in Chief, MobileTechReview
It looks like there was an icon in the iBookstore for Chelsea, Chelsea, Bang Bang... I've been keeping an eye on that book since the dead-tree format is available now, but the Sony and Kindle versions have been delayed. Is the iPad version really available already?
Other reviews indicate that what you referred to as a Hold Switch functions as a rotation lock switch - is that correct?
How well does A2DP work?
-------------------- Chief iPod Correspondent
Senior Time Waster
Captain of the Planet Express
Assistant Jedi Librarian