A magical and revolutionary conclusion: Apple’s iPad is not for me, not now [FreeStyleFriday]

My magical and revolutionary journey with Apple's iPad ended on June 15, 2010: I sold the device through Craig's List to a college student who was bubbling with excitement to use it.

My magical and revolutionary journey with Apple’s iPad ended on June 15, 2010:  I sold the device through Craig’s List to a college student who was bubbling with excitement to use it.  How did things go “sour” with a device that has so much promise?  It might not be what you think, but here are my reasons:

1.  Lack of use. It simply reached the point where I was not using the device enough.  This will make more sense when you read the other reasons.  The bottom line on this reason is that my lack of use of the device led to realizing that I could live without it.

2.  Can’t find the niche. I have to understand how the device fits into what I do each day, for both work and/or pleasure.  At this point, I cannot place the iPad into either category.  Let me explain.  The iPad does what it does very well, my tweets and posts are evidence of my beliefs in this area.  However, it does not do the things I need from a production device (desktop/laptop) at this point nor replace the convenience and connectivity of the iPhone (or probably many other smartphones):

a.  The lack of flash is tough for me because I have several key web applications I use in my law practice that require flash; they are essentially unusable on the iPad

b.  The inability to run more than one (3rd party) application at a time or easily switch between applications saps my productivity.  I am not saying that I even think it should do this, just that the lack of this when compared with a laptop, puts the iPad at a disadvantage.

c.  When I used the iPad in productivity situations it always felt as if I was limited and always close to another situation where I could not accomplish task I needed.  It was a relief to get back on the laptop, free from any of those limitations.

d.  The iPhone (my Smartphone of choice) fits easily into my hand, is pocketable and, after some practice, is fairly to type on.  The iPad is none of these things – it is somewhat portable but not as much as an iPhone; I struggled with both how to hold it and in inputting data when I was not using the Bluetooth keyboard.

e.  The Smartphone is 100% connected all the time –  I can call, text, email, chat, Twitter and more.  With the iPad, I couldn’t call, couldn’t text easily, could email and twitter.  However, my communication was split between at least two devices and that leads to the next reason . . .

3.  I’m a one device kinda guy. I accept what I am and that is a converged device person.  I want everything in one, portable device.  I want to be able to grab one device for a trip out and have all my bases covered.  The Smartphone fills this desire, the iPad does not simply because it is not a phone (Yes, I’m aware that the iPAd can be used with Skype and head set, but that is not the type of phone experience for which I am looking.)

4.  Lack of attachment from the Family. I expected the iPad, the content-consumption champion that it is, to be a hit with my family.  For some reason, it did not catch on.  My wife, being much more sensible than I, is not infatuated with devices.  However, I still expected her to warm to the iPad and its possibilities.  She did not, she recognized its novelty, but questioned its utility.  My son actually ended up preferring his iPod Touch over the iPad.  He could do many of the things he does on his Touch and the iPad.  However, at 8 years old, the iPod Touch is much easier for him to hold and manipulate.  The iPad is a large and somewhat unwieldy device to him.

5.  Not my best use of resources. And finally, yes, there is a monetary element to this story.  One of my hobbies is mobile technology and I certainly spend some money on devices.  But it became increasingly difficult for me to justify the money spent on the iPad, a device that does not replace a phone or a computer and that I am using infrequently.  Add to this mix the announcement of iPhone 4 and my immediate desire to posses it.  And it doesn’t look like I am eligible for upgrade pricing.  All these factors combined to convince me there is a better use of my resources.

The end.

So, I listed the iPad and its accessories on Craig’s List and sold it within about 8 hours.  There are obviously a few people who are excited about the iPad and rightfully so:  It provides an intimate user experience that, in my opinion, is not duplicated on a computer or a phone.

A magical and revolutionary experience for some people.  For me, it was time for the revolution to end.

Posted by Shawn Roberts

On this blog, I write about and try to answer practical Oklahoma legal questions. My focus and most experience is in estate planning and business issues including Oklahoma non-compete law. I make a living as an attorney in the law firm I founded, Cazes Roberts, PLLC in Oklahoma City. I live in Edmond with wife Amy and my two children, Sam (17) and David (9). We live precisely in the path of where the "wind comes sweeping down the plains."

6 comments

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Beckyshae

Hi Shawn,
I really liked reading your ipad post. As Matt put, we can’t spend on it right now, but it sure was fun playing word games on when Liz visited me!
Have a great day!
Becky

Jordan Patterson

Shawn, I also agree with your points. I think my love of the iPad stems from the fact that I don’t have a laptop directly next to it. I use the iPad primarily as I would a netbook but several key apps and the form factor make it an attractive option. This makes meant to share how well it fits in my life.

Shawn,

I must agree with most of what you wrote, I think it is a cool devise but I have not bought one simply due to the fact that I can not see how I would use it, and can not justify spending the money on one.
Although I do think the ipad is pretty cool!

Matt

That makes interesting reading.
I’m a big fan of the phone but for work use a lot of excel and it’s justs not as easy as it should be.
There doesn’t seem to be a simple way of moving files on and off from a desktop
I also wonder that have we got used to the phone being updated in the background with it’s “always connected” convenience which you have to pay for in spades on an Ipad?

Haven’t bought one yet probably will as I will have to try, but I hear your points.
Cheers.
Good useful information