The iPad is out and there are plenty of nay-sayers out there bemoaning the fact it doesn’t do this or it doesn’t have that. Many predict that this will be the product that sinks Apple’s boat (how they figure that is beyond me. Isn’t Apple now worth more than Wal-Mart?) and have a whole slew of reasons why. “It doesn’t have USB ports” and “it doesn’t play Flash” are a few of the main gripes.
Let’s take a look at Apple history since Steve Jobs has come back and we’ll look at a handful of products that were destined to fail for various reasons.
- iMac – “It didn’t have a disk drive!” That was the main killer there. Yet, wasn’t this the product that got Apple back on its feet?
- iPod – “It doesn’t support Ogg Vorbis!” and “it’s a hard drive-based player, you need a flash memory player!” Do we really need to discuss this one any further? An entire industry has been built around this product.
- iPhone – “It doesn’t support MMS or video. The battery isn’t removable. It’s only on one carrier”. I’d hardly call the iPhone a failure either
That’s just a handful of products that were destined to fail for very specific reasons (in addition to all three of those products being “overpriced” and only for “snobby Apple fanboys”). Now let’s look at the main gripes of the iPad.
- No Flash support – Could be a problem…for now. HTML 5 is getting tightened up and there will be no need for the proprietary Flash
- No built-in USB – Could be a problem…for now. There are adapters, there’s the dock, there’s wifi to connect to your network. Is it a killer? I highly doubt it.
- No camera – People are listing this as a reason the iPad will fail? If it’s THAT important I’m sure Apple will add one in the next release. For now I just don’t think it’s a reason to deem this a failure.
- It doesn’t do what an iPhone/netbook/laptop does – Well, it’s NOT an iPhone or netbook or laptop. Don’t try to compare it to one. It’s an entirely new device for consumers. Would you rather lug your laptop around to check your mail or read an ebook or have an iPad sitting in the living room?
- No removable battery – Do you need one? The battery lasts crazy long even under full use. An extra battery would be nice but it’s hardly a reason the iPad will be a failure
- Touch keyboard – If you really need one you can add one. Again, not a reason for failure. I think people will appreciate the sleek design and not having to worry about breaking keys as they lug this around.
Do I have an iPad? No. Do I want one? Sure. Do I think it’s a miracle device? No. Do I think it will fail? Hell no.
Apple has created a device that does not fit into any particular category. Many publishers have signed on knowing this will be an easier way to distribute their content. Developers are loving the fact there’s another platform to develop for. Consumers are still on the fence but I think once there is a realization that it fits a nice niche between iPhone/iPod Touch and a laptop, sales will continue to grow (they’d probably grow more if Apple didn’t sign another exclusive deal with AT&T. C’mon guys…really?).
That’s just the hardware side of things…don’t even get me started on how much money Apple will make from app sales and other content sales through this thing. A bust? I think not.