Articles Technology

iPad Mini: early observations

Having owned at least one of every generation of iPad so far, what is the iPad Mini like?

  • It’s smaller, obviously. But the only time it really feels it is when trying to enter text. You can manage quick notes if you use the ‘split keyboard’ trick and it’s light enough to make it practical unlike on the full size iPad.
  • When I first got a Kindle, it felt like a breakthrough because it fit in my coat pocket. This is in the same league when it comes to size and weight.
  • God I miss 3G on this so much more than I did on the iPad 3. Using it more and in more portable situations exposes the pain of setting up a personal hotspot on my phone every time I want to connect.
  • Get a Retina Display and 4G in this and you have my (and many other people’s) perfect iPad.
Articles Technology

Looking Beneath the Surface

Initial thoughts on the Microsoft Surface tablets, announced yesterday (read up at The Verge.) Warning: There are some generalisations ahead but I think they are ones we can all live with… #perksofnotbeingafulltimejourno


Firstly: you aren’t going to buy a surface alongside your iPad – until it needs upgrading. I’ve long thought Apple is running to a 2 year product cycle (if you’re on iPhone 3G, you’d upgrade to the 4/ if iPhone 3GS, it’s the 4S) but there’s a catch with this; it’s largely perpetuated by the next Apple release, not those from external vendors.

I think it’s fair to say, if you just bought a The New iPad, you likely aren’t in the market for this.

Articles consumer Technology

Dell’s Streaky Tablet Strategy

An unidentified non-Streaky Dell tablet

Don’t get me wrong, Dell don’t exactly *need* a tablet PC right now. For a start, they don’t have the OS for it and in reality, the iPad is also too pricey for the mainstream Dell audience to shell out. They aren’t going to buy it instead of a laptop, for example.

However, if Dell let Apple get a year’s head start without anything competitive to show in the area, they wouldn’t end up competing with just the iPad but the iPad 2, some kind of Google machine and likely something from the likes of HTC, HP and co. too.

With this in mind,  they had to do something and quick. Android was really all they had to play with so I can only assume they chucked it onto a few form factors before collapsing in tears at the horrors of Android 1.6 vs the slick and clearly tablet-ready iOS.


iPad Thoughts- 1 month later (ish.)

A few more observations now that I’ve been using it a while.

Naturally if you aren’t interested in iPads then you might want to give this one a miss…

Odds and Sods Technology

IPad Thoughts – 4 days in

iPad hello

Time for a few early iPad thoughts (it arrived on Thursday, ahead of schedule!) Will try not to be too gushing and also to avoid topics I've seen discussed most frequently elsewhere. In no particular order:

  • Its not a big iPod Touch- the relationship is the other way round. That device acts as a satellite to this one, a little outpost for the concept and technology. At times it almost feels like a little cute imitation, a knitted memento of its bigger brother.
  • A pleasant unanticipated benefit has been that my iPhone battery lasts way longer. The time I used to spend fiddling with apps on the train has been displaced by eBooks and Wired magazine, leaving more juice in the most vital organ.

Articles consumer

Apple’s Razor Sharp New Direction

With the iPad, Apple has clearly slashed its usual profit margins and priced the device to sell. I think this marks a fascinating shift for the company toward the classic ‘razor blade‘ strategy of providing a cheap platform to enable a steady revenue stream.  The announcement of iAd only confirms this, introducing yet another example of the minimum effort/ maximum profit scenario that the iTunes store whet their appetite for so long ago.