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starbase1
12-11-2010, 12:26 PM
Having narrowly escaped the latest wave of redundancies at the office, to my great surprise, I'm planning on getting my wife an iPad as a Christmas present.

Are there any essential accessories I should get with it? (Apart from massively over priced cases, obviuously). Anything else to recommend getting it so she can do cool stuff with it straight out the box?

I'd also like to put some video on it for her - and it might be sensible to pre-prepare some videos to load. What formats does it take, and is there an easy/free way to handle this?

Nick
(Macless)

gordonrobb
12-11-2010, 12:39 PM
Apps, depends what's she's into. I woud get her an iTunes token so that she can pick for herself.

Video, I found dome software to copy to iPad format. Just google it. Careful what iPad you get. A film can be as much as 4 gig.

Cases, I have a Snugg. You can get the rubber sleeve kind. If I'm honest cases are a big decision that she might prefer to make herself.

If your getting a 3G one, I would recommend 3 as the provider. 1gig for £7.50 per month is good.

Get her to subscribe to iPad today. It's a video pod cast purely about using the iPad.

There are countless apps, but if you want I can make some recommendations based on what she likes.

I love mine and haven't looked back since getting it in July.

starbase1
12-11-2010, 12:50 PM
Thanks for such a fast response!

It will be largely used outside the UK, and will not generally phone connected, except for wifi at home...

She's not into games at all, I think its largely going to be a fancy media player... I've got as pretty good idea of her taste in cases - it was more of a dig at the companies who seem to think 60 quid plus is reasonable!

Maybe something along the e-reader line?

gordonrobb
12-11-2010, 12:54 PM
Ah, cool.

This is the case I have here (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Snugg-Leather-Case-Cover-iPad/dp/B003LR7ME6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1292097095&sr=8-1), at £30 its good as it allows for you to view it slightly angled, or almost upright. The apple one is not bad ether.

YOu can also get a Kindle reader app in case she wants to use it as an e-reader.

Markc
12-11-2010, 01:47 PM
This probably doesn't help if you want it as an Xmas present, but FWIW, I would wait. The iPad2 is due out about February, which is supposed to have a higher resolution screen, front facing camera (for Facetime), most definitely more Ram.

gordonrobb
12-11-2010, 02:00 PM
Also the problem with that is that everything about the ipad2, including the Feb release date, is speculation.

And the thing about not being into games, I am certain she will find something that hooks her once she enters the app store, many for free. :)

Dexter2999
12-11-2010, 02:04 PM
Having narrowly escaped the latest wave of redundancies at the office, to my great surprise, I'm planning on getting my wife an iPad as a Christmas present.

Are there any essential accessories I should get with it? (Apart from massively over priced cases, obviuously). Anything else to recommend getting it so she can do cool stuff with it straight out the box?

I'd also like to put some video on it for her - and it might be sensible to pre-prepare some videos to load. What formats does it take, and is there an easy/free way to handle this?

Nick
(Macless)

Apparently, velcro.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uvSAoREf5Zo

JeffrySG
12-11-2010, 02:57 PM
For converting videos and non-copy protected DVDs or DVD files that you have on your computer without copy protection, I personally love Handbrake... totally cool software. And free too. http://handbrake.fr/

There are presets for the iphone but you can just adjust the resolution to whatever you want it to be and also play with compression and audio settings. For the iphone I can get movies down to 500mb and have them look really nice. At a higher res for the ipad I'm sure they'll get bigger but you can fool with the setting to see. You can also tell it what size you want the final video to be and it will compress accordingly. I'd try a few settings to see how low you can go at the ipad res.

Philbert
12-12-2010, 04:36 AM
Personally I'd be looking at a Notion Ink Adam (http://www.notionink.com/) or Motorola's upcoming tablet. Get more bang for your buck. However neither will be available until after xmas.

starbase1
12-12-2010, 05:06 AM
Thanks Jeffry, very helpful.

iPad 2? You might as well guess that all the white bits will come out black, and that you can only hold it with 2 fingers by the extreme edge...

Yes, personally I would not go for an apple product, (way too expensive for what you get, and the lack of expandable storage combined with their own insanely high mem prices scream out ripoff to me). But its not for me.

And yes its a christmas present which means waiting for 'real soon now' vapourware is even less sensible than normal!

Also thanks to Gordon for the specific case refs!

Markc
12-12-2010, 06:29 AM
It's worth checking out your local TKMaxx, apparently their selling the base WiFi model for £329 (very limited stock, not mentioned on website, a couple come in and sell pretty quick). Worth a visit if your going to buy :)

Philbert
12-12-2010, 06:57 AM
I think you mean TJ Maxx, and yes you're right I have heard of that sale too.

Markc
12-12-2010, 08:10 AM
It's called TKMaxx in the UK (for some reason) :)

Philbert
12-12-2010, 08:27 AM
Really? that's a strange thing for them to do, I thought you just made a typo since J and K are next to each other. Maybe that's what TJ Maxx did. lol

Markc
12-12-2010, 08:34 AM
Just Googled it, and this is apparently why:

The first T.K. Maxx opened in Bristol in 1994. T.K. Maxx's United States parent company, T.J. Maxx, adopted the name T.K. Maxx to avoid confusion with the existing but separate discount chain T J Hughes

Philbert
12-12-2010, 08:36 AM
huh curious. Reminds me of Woolworth's which I had assumed all went out of business over a decade ago until I learned they still exist in the UK and became Foot Locker here.

starbase1
12-12-2010, 09:54 AM
It's worth checking out your local TKMaxx, apparently their selling the base WiFi model for £329 (very limited stock, not mentioned on website, a couple come in and sell pretty quick). Worth a visit if your going to buy :)

A very useful tip, thanks!

Titus
12-12-2010, 12:38 PM
huh curious. Reminds me of Woolworth's which I had assumed all went out of business over a decade ago until I learned they still exist in the UK and became Foot Locker here.

Woolworth's? we have a couple here, they sell inexpensive Chinese stuff now.

I've been thinking in buying an ipad for the missus, I really don't care about their upcoming stuff. Anything from them is going to be obsolete in less than a year.

JonW
12-12-2010, 09:43 PM
Apple have been flogging them to death over here lately. My guess is that once every one has got one for Christmas & after Christmas sales the next model will come out in February or so.

Silkrooster
12-12-2010, 11:24 PM
Quote from Wikipedia...


Origin

The F.W. Woolworth Co. was among the first five-and-dime stores, which sold discounted general merchandise at fixed prices, usually five or ten cents, undercutting the prices of other local merchants. Woolworth, as the stores popularly became known, was one of the first American retailers to put merchandise out for the shopping public to handle and select without the assistance of a sales clerk. Earlier retailers had kept all merchandise behind a counter, and customers presented the clerk with a list of items they wished to buy. After working in a dry goods store in Watertown, New York, Frank Winfield Woolworth opened his first Woolworth’s store in Utica, New York, in 1878, but the store failed within a year. However, a second store he opened on June 21, 1879 in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, became a success. Frank Woolworth brought his brother Charles Sumner Woolworth into the business, and together they opened more stores, often in partnership with other business associates. The Woolworth brothers also entered into partnerships with “friendly rivals” to maximize inventory purchasing power for both parties. Woolsworth had a flagship store in none other than Philadelphia

Watertown is about a 1/2 hour from me and Utica is about an hour away. The original Woolworths building in Watertown is still standing and is currently in repair to become a hotel.
If I recall (hear say) there was an argument between the two cities over the original location whether it started in Watertown or Utica. BTW when Philadelphia is mentioned most people assume Pennsylvania. When in fact there is a Philadelphia in New York, where Kraft made its Philadelphia cheese. So facts can easily be assumed. In this case, I am not positive of which city they are referring to.

Silkrooster
12-12-2010, 11:31 PM
I found a picture of the Woolworth building in Watertown on Flickr

http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/2090581009

Silkrooster
12-12-2010, 11:34 PM
Sorry for going off topic. I guess mentioning woolworths brought out the history buff in me. Many fond memories going to its newer store a block over.

Philbert
12-13-2010, 12:33 AM
I'm pretty sure they're referring to the Woolworth's store that was here in the Philly. I forget exactly which building it is but I know I've walked past it a million times because it still has the F.W. Woolworth's logo set in tiles in the doorway.

starbase1
12-14-2010, 06:56 AM
Ahem!

Meanwhile back at the iPad, having bought one for my wife

I thought I'd record my impressions of my first full encounter with a major Apple product.

Nicely and effectively packed, sensible plug arrangement. Physically, very impressive. I particularly like the way it came with a decent charge so I could try it immediately. Don't think I've seen that before. I'm already wondering why anyone would pay more for a Samsung Galaxy. It feels really strong and well made too.

It immediately wanted to be connected to iTunes, so off to download and install that. First try, it says I have the wrong version, there's a separate 64 bit one... Irritating. Get the 64 bit one, this time it says it doesn't support XP. Fortunately for me the machine with all the media is dual boot to Vista, but this does not impress at all.

Start up iTunes, which I remember hating before, and its not any better so far, Lots of dumb questions, and now its going over a big music library - is this really necessary for me to copy some tracks onto the iPad? Not clear, and the pad wants iTunes before it does anything else... Looking at task manager, it appears to be single threaded and has a *32 by it - I thought this was a 64 bit version?! No percentage progress indicator either... And something calling itself 'genius' wants to send details of my music collection to Apple. An initially very strong good impression is fading fast.

It finished after about 45 minutes, not too bad, now its trying to locate and download missing album art - I've tried this myself lots, and doubt if it will find anything extra, I'll be impressed if it does... Its picking up some tricky ones, but missing some easy ones.

OK, try connecting the iPad - nothing. Stop and start iTunes, nothing. Restart the lot, nothing.

What next? Hmmm... google search for itunes and ipad,,, Good grief, even after all that install palaver, I apparently have version 8.1 and need 9.something. Try the update check... No option to just get the iTunes, I must also get quicktime, and its shoving a browser and other crap called "bonjour" at me. **** off Apple.

Comes down, new agreement - apparently theres a social network and if I use it, they will again track my music. This is Orwellian...

OK, correct version here, its spotted the iPad, now it wants to update the iPad software... Another download, another compulsory agreement... It tells me its downloading and installing, Tells me this will take 87 minutes. WTF?!?!

I'm going to bed before then, I'll see if its done in the morning.

First evening with it, overall impressions, nice hardware, but a good candidate for the worst set up I have ever endured for any product. Hours after plugging it in, amd its still not properly ready to use.

iTunes is execrable - I thought Apple were meant to be good at this stuff?

Nick

gordonrobb
12-14-2010, 07:03 AM
NO idea why it would not automatically download the latest version of iTunes the first time, or did you have an old version installed. You do need iTunes to tell it which tracks you want to sync with the iPad. Maybe it's becuase Ive never had an alternative, but I've never really understood why people have a problem with iTunes.

Regarding the update for the iPad, you could have skipped that easily. That said, it is a major update that gives a lot of great things. Not least of which are 'folders' and 'multi-taksing' (which should really just be called fast app switching.

Let us know what you think once you've had a play though.

starbase1
12-14-2010, 08:17 AM
Ive never had an alternative, but I've never really understood why people have a problem with iTunes.

Regarding the update for the iPad, you could have skipped that easily. That said, it is a major update that gives a lot of great things. Not least of which are 'folders' and 'multi-taksing' (which should really just be called fast app switching.

Let us know what you think once you've had a play though.

Well... So far there's the download issue, and I find it really cumbersome with my very large audio collection. In its defence the search is instant. It also wanted to 'prepare' photos I sent over, (which seemed to consist of shrinking them, and not letting me zoom much).

With both my phone and my MP3 player I can just dump files into a folder and it sorts them out for me, much simpler.

A very quick experiment, confirmed with google, suggests that video conversion features are non existent, and as mentioned before, format support seems limited. So there's a painful and slow conversion process to get used to, (with consequent loss of quality). Again, my andriod phone I can just drop in files, it plays everything. Similar with the little WD box which sits between USB drives and my television.

Once stuff is on the device, it seems delightful - very easy to set up wifi, and a pleasure to move between photos. They look great on that screen too. On screen keyboard was decent, and maps looked stunning on that display - something about being able to pull the around and flick them on that nice screen was very addictive.

So I suspect that actually using it will be a real pleasure - but I really dislike iTunes a LOT, and in this day and age, when there are so many free and even open source tools that can play so much, (VLC, GOM player, Rockplayer), such weak video format support seems more than a bit crappy.

Philbert
12-14-2010, 08:23 AM
I've never really understood why people have a problem with iTunes.


I find it cumbersome and difficult to navigate. But more than that is the fact that for my old iphone or if I got an ipad I'm forced to use it when I already have a perfectly good app that I'm quite happy with (WMP). With my phone WMP syncs all of my photos, music, videos etc. Another annoying thing about itunes is that it made a duplicate of all of my MP3s in it's own folder, that's an extra 9GB of space taken up on my drive for no good reason.

starbase1
12-14-2010, 08:43 AM
Another annoying thing about itunes is that it made a duplicate of all of my MP3s in it's own folder, that's an extra 9GB of space taken up on my drive for no good reason.

It does WHAT?!?!

In my case that's about an extra 800 Gb!

Philbert
12-14-2010, 08:53 AM
Yup, I have my normal MP3 folder where I keep all of my music, then it made a copy for itself.

Titus
12-14-2010, 01:34 PM
A friend of mine has just aquired an inexpensive Android tablet, and is very happy with it:

www.euogo.com/10-inch-keyboard-kick-stand-case-for-android-tablets-with-stylus-mini-usb-port_p419.html

gordonrobb
12-14-2010, 03:38 PM
It doesn't have to duplicate your files. It only does that if its set to manage your files for you. You can either have your iTunes use the files where they are, or it can move them to it's own folder. No duplicates needed.

Starbase there is a VLC player app for the iPad too.

Philbert
12-14-2010, 07:12 PM
A friend of mine has just aquired an inexpensive Android tablet, and is very happy with it:

www.euogo.com/10-inch-keyboard-kick-stand-case-for-android-tablets-with-stylus-mini-usb-port_p419.html


Your link goes to a keyboard / case.

Anyway speaking of cheap, if you're in the US the Barnes & Noble Nook Color is slated to get Android 2.2 and Market access in January, so that make it a full fledged Android tablet for $249. I've never looked closely at it so I'm not sure but it probably does lack stuff like GPS and accelerometer.
http://www.engadget.com/2010/12/14/nook-color-getting-android-2-2-and-market-in-january-current-ha/

Silkrooster
12-14-2010, 11:30 PM
I got to the point where Itunes is the only app for music I use. Much easier to organize than windows media is.
I think the biggest issue your having is with 64 bit. Apple seams to have issues with 64 bit on windows. Probably because it is in direct conflict with the newer Macs.

Philbert
12-14-2010, 11:34 PM
I don't find it easier at all, but I guess we all have our opinions.

starbase1
12-15-2010, 12:38 AM
I've ordered a 7" Archos android tablet for myself, wich I hope to get very soon. I went for that size on the basis it would be a LOT easier to use on a bus or train.

Silkrooster
12-15-2010, 02:23 AM
I don't find it easier at all, but I guess we all have our opinions.

That is so true...

starbase1
12-16-2010, 07:32 AM
OK, can one of you who finds iTunes so intuitive tell me how to get a video onto the iPad after I've converted it?!

Sekhar
12-16-2010, 07:58 AM
Yeah, surprising how unintuitive iTunes is, given it's from Apple. I try avoid using it, but have to on my Mac Mini for my iPhone and iPad. Hope they fix the interface.

Philbert
12-16-2010, 08:19 AM
Frankly I had OSX running on my laptop for a while and found that extremely unintuitive. I almost never used it and eventually just uninstalled it.

Silkrooster
12-16-2010, 10:39 PM
OK, can one of you who finds iTunes so intuitive tell me how to get a video onto the iPad after I've converted it?!

Sure. Once the video is converted. The video will be placed in the Movies library on the left side of screen.
Connect the Ipad/Ipod to the computer.
Click on Devices on left side of screen. (Visible only after your device has been synced with the computer)
Click on Movies tab center top of screen
Check the sync movies box and specify to automatically include all or check which movie you want synced.
The screen grabs shown are for Itunes 10 32-bit with Ipod Nano connected. Your screens should be similar but hopefully the same.

warmiak
12-16-2010, 11:27 PM
Frankly I had OSX running on my laptop for a while and found that extremely unintuitive. I almost never used it and eventually just uninstalled it.

Yeah, same thing here .. I still use it cause I have to develop for the iOS platform but that's about it - for every other task I run to my Windows box.

starbase1
12-17-2010, 03:48 AM
Sure. Once the video is converted. The video will be placed in the Movies library on the left side of screen.
Connect the Ipad/Ipod to the computer.
Click on Devices on left side of screen. (Visible only after your device has been synced with the computer)
Click on Movies tab center top of screen
Check the sync movies box and specify to automatically include all or check which movie you want synced.
The screen grabs shown are for Itunes 10 32-bit with Ipod Nano connected. Your screens should be similar but hopefully the same.

Brilliant! Many thanks for taking the time to do that for me.

starbase1
12-17-2010, 03:58 AM
I think its worth emphasizing that iTunes is the only real problem area for me- once the stuff is on the iPad, its an absolute delight to use, easy, intuitive, and looks great.

Silkrooster
12-17-2010, 10:46 PM
Brilliant! Many thanks for taking the time to do that for me.

It was no problem. And you're welcome...

Gumby22don
12-18-2010, 12:43 AM
A very quick experiment, confirmed with google, suggests that video conversion features are non existent, and as mentioned before, format support seems limited. So there's a painful and slow conversion process to get used to, (with consequent loss of quality). Again, my andriod phone I can just drop in files, it plays everything. Similar with the little WD box which sits between USB drives and my television.

Sorry - should have posted this the first time I saw this thread.

What you want / need is the VLC player app - it does what you want when you want... in fact, no conversions required for most movie files - you just load itunes, select the VLC app and drop your movie files onto its little VLC data drop folder. Then VLC handles codecs etc and gives you your video...

Much better than anything else I've seen for iphone/ipad.

Don
have a great day

starbase1
12-18-2010, 03:22 AM
Sorry - should have posted this the first time I saw this thread.

What you want / need is the VLC player app - it does what you want when you want... in fact, no conversions required for most movie files - you just load itunes, select the VLC app and drop your movie files onto its little VLC data drop folder. Then VLC handles codecs etc and gives you your video...

Much better than anything else I've seen for iphone/ipad.

Don
have a great day

Even better - if its like the other versions, it will support multiple soundtracks and subtitles in MKV's!

JohnMarchant
12-18-2010, 03:37 AM
Ahem!

Meanwhile back at the iPad, having bought one for my wife

I thought I'd record my impressions of my first full encounter with a major Apple product.

Nicely and effectively packed, sensible plug arrangement. Physically, very impressive. I particularly like the way it came with a decent charge so I could try it immediately. Don't think I've seen that before. I'm already wondering why anyone would pay more for a Samsung Galaxy. It feels really strong and well made too.

It immediately wanted to be connected to iTunes, so off to download and install that. First try, it says I have the wrong version, there's a separate 64 bit one... Irritating. Get the 64 bit one, this time it says it doesn't support XP. Fortunately for me the machine with all the media is dual boot to Vista, but this does not impress at all.

Start up iTunes, which I remember hating before, and its not any better so far, Lots of dumb questions, and now its going over a big music library - is this really necessary for me to copy some tracks onto the iPad? Not clear, and the pad wants iTunes before it does anything else... Looking at task manager, it appears to be single threaded and has a *32 by it - I thought this was a 64 bit version?! No percentage progress indicator either... And something calling itself 'genius' wants to send details of my music collection to Apple. An initially very strong good impression is fading fast.

It finished after about 45 minutes, not too bad, now its trying to locate and download missing album art - I've tried this myself lots, and doubt if it will find anything extra, I'll be impressed if it does... Its picking up some tricky ones, but missing some easy ones.

OK, try connecting the iPad - nothing. Stop and start iTunes, nothing. Restart the lot, nothing.

What next? Hmmm... google search for itunes and ipad,,, Good grief, even after all that install palaver, I apparently have version 8.1 and need 9.something. Try the update check... No option to just get the iTunes, I must also get quicktime, and its shoving a browser and other crap called "bonjour" at me. **** off Apple.

Comes down, new agreement - apparently theres a social network and if I use it, they will again track my music. This is Orwellian...

OK, correct version here, its spotted the iPad, now it wants to update the iPad software... Another download, another compulsory agreement... It tells me its downloading and installing, Tells me this will take 87 minutes. WTF?!?!

I'm going to bed before then, I'll see if its done in the morning.

First evening with it, overall impressions, nice hardware, but a good candidate for the worst set up I have ever endured for any product. Hours after plugging it in, amd its still not properly ready to use.

iTunes is execrable - I thought Apple were meant to be good at this stuff?

Nick

Funny mate, your impressions of the iPad are exactly my impressions of the iPhone 4 when i wrote an article on it. Nice hardware let down by poor software and abysmal iTunes, well it is on windows 7 64 bit. When iTunes is running it uses 600mb of memory WTFITAA.

JohnMarchant
12-18-2010, 03:39 AM
I think its worth emphasizing that iTunes is the only real problem area for me- once the stuff is on the iPad, its an absolute delight to use, easy, intuitive, and looks great.

If your really adventurous Jailbreak

pauland
12-18-2010, 11:51 AM
Gosh, I have an iPad and I would confess that iTunes is not my favourite bit of software, but it does do some good stuff.

Getting going with the iPad has been a breeze and it makes web browsing a joy. Expensive, I guess so.

That said, the iPad has quickly become my favourite toy. I love browsing the internet with it - to the point I almost resent using a mouse now. In a recent discussion about the iPad an utter convert to the tablet said that he had all but given up using his laptop and had absolutely hated the experience when using a Galaxy Tab that he also owns. In his words "The downsides with the Galaxy Tab? 1) Android - it's just crap. A poor implemented, blatant rip-off of the iPhone/iPod/iPad 2) App selection - they are beyond crap ", so I guess he's on the fence.

The iPad is a definite hit in our house. My son had a go on some Android tablets and was unimpressed after using the iPad.

All I can say is that in a household that two years ago had no Apple equipment, we now have a Mac, iPhone 4, iPad, iPod Touch and an iPod Nano.

iPad is good.

Paul

UltraViolet
12-18-2010, 12:28 PM
Well, that is kind of how I feel...

I will NEVER buy laptop again, I do not have Ipad now (I have Ipod though, and love it), but I tested it numerous time in Apple store, man, what a joy to use, indeed.

We just need more hot points here in USA, too many crippled ones, 3G (or is it 4G now?) is still way too expensive IMO :D

Titus
12-18-2010, 12:51 PM
Yesterday bought an ipad, hot item, hard to get.

Edit: There are some alternatives to itunes, some open source.

Philbert
12-18-2010, 12:57 PM
I've tried it a few times in Best Buy and it was honestly "meh". I had an iphone and it just feels like a big one of those. This is one reason why I'm looking forward to an Android tablet, it can do more than what my Android phone can do. Like being able to use a pressure sensitive stylus or plugging in a USB thumb drive, front and back cameras, etc.

pauland
12-18-2010, 05:45 PM
Essentially, the iPad is a big iPhone (without the phone), or big iPod touch (without camera, but with or without 3G). The real differrence is that using it with a large screen makes web browsing a very differrent experience and video, books and photographs look quite stunning. You wouldn't really browse too much with a smaller device, but it's a lot of fun on the iPad and the virtual keyboard is far easier to use. You're absolutely right that it is a big "iWhatever", but that's so important.

I'd also say that apps such as "Cool Hunting" and "StumbleUpon" make exploring the web so much fun. The "Guardian eyeWitness" is another favourite - stunning photographs allied with photography tips. I have a lot of PDF books and have never felt comfortable reading them on my laptop. The iPad has changed that and I suspect is now the reason that so many publishers are releasing PDF/ePub versions.

I know you can get these via a browser, but the experience using the iPad is very differrent and photographs are stunning to look at. My iPod touch feels like a poor relation (which it is).

Tablets are here to stay.

gordonrobb
12-18-2010, 05:51 PM
Also, people go on about it being purely a consumption device, but I use it regularly for creating word documents. I have a blutooth keyboard, and use Documentstogo. I 'jump' into my office VPN, logon to my works' machine if I need to copy files onto my 'dropbox' folder. Then I type way on my ipad till my heart is content. I have not switched on my laptop since I got the ipad in July.

starbase1
12-19-2010, 08:58 AM
Also, people go on about it being purely a consumption device, but I use it regularly for creating word documents. I have a blutooth keyboard, and use Documentstogo. I 'jump' into my office VPN, logon to my works' machine if I need to copy files onto my 'dropbox' folder. Then I type way on my ipad till my heart is content. I have not switched on my laptop since I got the ipad in July.

I've not heard that before - what do you think it gives you that (say) a netbook does not?

starbase1
12-19-2010, 09:07 AM
I really like my Android phone a lot, and trying an iPad doesn't change my mind on that. While a lot of it comes down to taste, there are a few factors I consider key in my choice.

1. Mine can act as a USB host - I can connect my camera to it directly. Or a USB hard drive. Important when travelling.

2. My preferred size is 7", I want something I can hold in one hand while on a train or bus.

3. Very easy to unlock / root. I want to use maps etc when abroad, without paying insane international data rates. Just bung in a local PAYG sim.

4. Built in camera, for Skype. Free international video calls!

5. Perhaps the most important for me - expandable internal storage. What apple charge for internal memory is a rip off,, and not providing a data card slot, (or USB, see above), seems to be designed to put their profits way above the functionality I want.

And I get all that at about half the price!

gordonrobb
12-19-2010, 09:26 AM
I've not heard that before - what do you think it gives you that (say) a netbook does not?

Dunno what a netbook gives to be honest. I am shamelessly saying that for me the iPad is cool. But I can also work on it, it isn't just for browsing the web.


I really like my Android phone a lot, and trying an iPad doesn't change my mind on that. While a lot of it comes down to taste, there are a few factors I consider key in my choice.

1. Mine can act as a USB host - I can connect my camera to it directly. Or a USB hard drive. Important when travelling.

2. My preferred size is 7", I want something I can hold in one hand while on a train or bus.

3. Very easy to unlock / root. I want to use maps etc when abroad, without paying insane international data rates. Just bung in a local PAYG sim.

4. Built in camera, for Skype. Free international video calls!

5. Perhaps the most important for me - expandable internal storage. What apple charge for internal memory is a rip off,, and not providing a data card slot, (or USB, see above), seems to be designed to put their profits way above the functionality I want.

And I get all that at about half the price!

1. I think you can get an adapter to connect your camera to your ipad.

2. This is choice, I would find that too small. There are all sorts of rumours about the next ipad coming in that size too.

3. The iPad isn't locked. It's as you say, get a PAYG data sim, and you're off.

4. Not sure if I would use this, but again romoured for the iPad 2

5. I agree with this as a limiting factor. Although, you can/do get into the habit of not havnig everythign on your device, that's what iTunes is for :)

pauland
12-19-2010, 10:06 AM
what do you think it gives you that (say) a netbook does not?

A very convenient form factor with an easy browsing experience, superb display, long battery life, an escape from using a keyboard or trackpad.

But really, trying to consider what an iPad does for you shouldn't be a question of comparing feature tickboxes. I'm sure you aren't using LW because of features ticked on a list. Nor should people buy product on the basis of price alone or the need to change the product (cheaply or not) afterwards because they've bought it and it doesn't make them happy.

The iPad isn't a notebook replacement, though some people find it more convenient than one for many situations.

I think comparing a tablet with a netbook is a bit like comparing an Apple and an Orange, because an Orange isn't an Apple. If Apples aren't to your taste then Oranges are good too.

I think five minutes in a store doesn't mean that you get the idea of what having an iPad is like. I bought mine from someone who bought it thinking they would be some super notebook, but it's definitely not that.

I haven't used an Android tablet, but I have yet to hear a favourable comparison with the iPad. The cheap Android tablets are apparently unresponsive with poor touch screens and the bigger and more expensive ones, tick more feature boxes than the iPad but still don't match the user experience.

The iPad or Android tablets aren't for everyone, but I think the traditional laptop is dead. They just don't know it yet.

Titus
12-19-2010, 10:11 AM
Two weeks ago I attended a meeting with European TV producers. Everyone was pithching their shows with an iPad, I guess it has the cool factor a notebook doesn't have.

Lightwolf
12-19-2010, 10:11 AM
The iPad or Android tablets aren't for everyone, but I think the traditional laptop is dead.
Isn't that kind of... erm, contradictory?

Cheers,
Mike - who certainly has more important things to shell out for first...

Philbert
12-19-2010, 10:31 AM
1. I think you can get an adapter to connect your camera to your ipad.


Yes if you want to pay even more money. :p It's $30.

gordonrobb
12-19-2010, 11:26 AM
Sure, was just pointing out it could be done.

Philbert
12-19-2010, 11:31 AM
The thing about the camera kit is that it does give you a USB port, but that port is limited to only using it for camera connections, it won't let you do anything else like connect a thumb drive for file storage. I believe the same is true with the SD card slot, it will only let you transfer pictures.

pauland
12-19-2010, 01:33 PM
"The iPad or Android tablets aren't for everyone, but I think the traditional laptop is dead." - Isn't that kind of... erm, contradictory?

LOL, no. The manufacturers are already mutating laptops towards the tablet. Dell has produced a laptop with a swivel screen (I also remember seeing a toshiba with a pair of touch screens - no keyboard), so really I think it won't be too long before lugging around laptops will look like yesterdays technology.

If you consider what people use laptops for it comes down to presentations, reports, video perhaps, browsing, email, word processing, reading books. A tablet can do all those things.

Granted, you aren't going to be running lightwave on an iPad, but power users are a niche but for the mainstream tablets are going to dominate.

I'm not suggesting desktops or laptops are going to be xtinct anytime soon, but if I look around, most people I know have scrapped desktops in favour laptops. If I look at what many people use their laptops for, a tablet would do very nicely.

Is lack of HD space a big limitation? Not while there are network drives and maybe the cloud/online storage will come forward.

Anyway, I might be wrong, but I think laptops as we know them are dead.

kopperdrake
12-19-2010, 02:35 PM
I forsee the iPad filling its niche, but laptops ain't dead and to be honest a decent keyboard is vital to certain people:

Web devs - you don't need the most powerful lappy as a web designer but you'd be lost without a keyboard.

Casual gamers - WoW on a touchscreen?

Graphics - I can tinker in Photoshop or Illustrator on my little Macbook, or even Indesign, but that ain't going to happen on an iPad or a looky-likey.

Nah - I love the look of the iPad, and don't get me wrong, if the wife bought me one I'd be vert grateful and it would fill many roles, but I'd miss the laptop I'm currently using to type this on.

pauland
12-19-2010, 03:09 PM
I'm not saying the laptop is dead - as in "dodo" - but that it will mutate towards tablet features - touch screens, lighter formats, optional/removable keyboards, etc. Power/specialised users will, as you rightly say, will always need the powerhouse machine in a portable format. What I am saying for sure is that what you use now, won't be around for purchase in five years.

If you're giving a presentation in a couple of years time and can't pick up your machine and turn it towards your audience to illustrate your point - or hand it to your client to see the cool graphic themselves without breaking their arm, you will look like yesterdays man.

Lightwolf
12-19-2010, 03:23 PM
LOL, no. The manufacturers are already mutating laptops towards the tablet. Dell has produced a laptop with a swivel screen (I also remember seeing a toshiba with a pair of touch screens - no keyboard), so really I think it won't be too long before lugging around laptops will look like yesterdays technology.
Isn't that yesterday's tech revived? I think slate was the term way back when... ;)

Anyway, I might be wrong, but I think laptops as we know them are dead.
Well, I'd see it this way.. a lot of the current usages of laptops certainly are. And that's the mobile consummation device (which may include the odd mail or text to write).

Which only means that laptops will finally get back to their roots - a mobile computer. Good :D

Cheers,
Mike

starbase1
12-20-2010, 07:24 AM
I think Lightwolf has it exactly right. Tablets (when done right) are a threat to things like netbooks. A proper laptop, where you can run the same apps as on your desktop, for use when you get to your destination, will still do a whole raft of stuff tablets can't do.

At a bit of a tangent, has everyone seen the new 'word lens' app?

Now that's something which is seriously close to magic, and would not be practical waving a netbook with a webcam around.

(For those who are not, you point your smartphone camera at a scene with some text, and it translates that text IN PLACE IN THE IMAGE! Currently only Spanish and English)

Philbert
12-20-2010, 07:59 AM
Oh yes I can agree they are definitely a threat to netbooks, but no laptops by far.

Yes Word Lens looks amazing but it;s only available for new iphones, not first gen and not Android. Lots of complaints about that.

starbase1
12-20-2010, 09:11 AM
Oh yes I can agree they are definitely a threat to netbooks, but no laptops by far.

Yes Word Lens looks amazing but it;s only available for new iphones, not first gen and not Android. Lots of complaints about that.

I hear Android is on the way, as are other languages. That could be absolutely priceless as an alternative to squinting at signage in a railway station or wherever... And its the first generation of product, this could get really interesting in a year or two

Philbert
12-20-2010, 10:07 AM
That's great. I would love to have a Japanese language pack for Android.

Silkrooster
12-20-2010, 10:56 PM
Is that what its for, a language translator?

Philbert
12-21-2010, 05:56 AM
Yes it translates text you see on a real object like a sign or menu, but on the screen it looks like the same exact sign, only written in a different language.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2OfQdYrHRs

starbase1
12-22-2010, 07:23 AM
Aha! Apparently my 7" Archos has arrived, and I will get my sweaty hands on it this evening!

I must load it up with William Vaughan tutorial videos, then I can be highly productive on the 78 bus!

Nick

Silkrooster
12-22-2010, 11:49 PM
Just so you guys know there is some expansion. This does not mention the Ipad though.

http://dualie.net/

500GB HD docking station by Buffalo.

Darth Mole
12-23-2010, 02:19 AM
Not got very much to add apart from I got my iPad day one and have used it extensively both home and abroad - followed the Ryder cup with it in Greece, and covered SIGGRAPH with it in LA. I use it for watching TV when doing the washing up and keeping in touch if I'm I'll at home. And, of course, I'm writing this post on it in bed. It's a fantastic piece of kit, and I'm very happy with It.

starbase1
12-23-2010, 04:45 AM
OK, got my new Archos 7" android tablet yesterday evening. Not had time to go deep yet, but here are some initial impressions.

It's really light without feeling flimsy, and the display is very good. Easy to hold in one hand too. It would be nice to have wider viewing angles, (and its not up to the excellent standards of an iPad), but video looks great on it. As expected its coping really well with formats, (plays everything so far, and I tried a broad mix), and also does a better job than I expected in upscaling - some rather highly compressed and small vids looked just fine.

Getting stuff on it is a doddle, as I'd expect with android devices, it just comes up as a USB drive, with some obvious folder names like "Video" to put your videos in, duh!

There are definitely a few rough edges though... The soft onscreen buttons are not what Android expects and this leads to some irritating niggles - for example, the right half of the battery level display on the home screen is a obscured. It came with android 2.1, but there was the option to upgrade to 2.2, which brought better performance. It is still a bit sluggish at times though - this is really noticeable with the slideshow app, where the image is seriously rough while it loads up all the data for a few seconds. Definitely a bit more laggy than my HTC desire phone.

The biggest drawback though is the lack of the android market. Archos have made their own version, and it does have a lot of the good stuff, (Guardian Anywhere, Angry Birds), but a LOT of stuff is missing - most noticeable the google applications, (no 'maps'! argh!). It's apparently not difficult to hack this, and I'll report back when I have done it. Out the box though, its missing quite a few of the ones I have grown to rely on for my HTC desire.

Initial conclusion: I like it and I am glad I bought it, but there are rough edges, and its definitely one for people who don't mind tinkering a bit to get things the way the want it. As a truly portable media player, its excellent.

Nick

starbase1
12-26-2010, 03:55 AM
I've been using it for a few days now, and I'm pleased with it.

Getting the full marketplace (and google apps) on proved very easy, which was a big help. It's really good for watching videos on - though unfortunately the only format it can't handle is the William Vaughan tutorials! I intend to experiment with other players now I have access to the full range, and I'm hopeful that will deliver all formats.

Archos experience with portable media players really shines through though, this is a real strength. The screen is also large enough to make a comfortable viewing e-reader. The built in camera is good enough for video calling, I would not want to use it for much more than that.

The included games are rubbish, but angry birds looks great in higher definition!

I also really like the size and weight - while its no match for a big screen in terms of a viewing experience, its small enough to be REALLY portable, and easy to hold without effort in one hand. Lets put it like this - with 4 times the area of a typical phone screen, thats a major improvement, even if its not the size of a netbook or ipad.

It will take time for me to find and install the best versions of the apps for different purposes, (must find a really good PDF reader), don't know what the iPad marketplavce experience is like in this regard, but the google one is a bit weak at moving the best to the top of the list, and sometimes you must try a lot of rubbish to find the good stuff. (It is there though).

Battery life seems good, though I haven't really got a grip on it yet as it hasn't run down - though this is noticably better than my HTC desire, which has a painfully short life once you start to use all the features.

As I remarked before, it definitely feels less responsive than the phone, though not so bad its a mqjor pain. So, for example, it can handle google maps, but its a little jerky.

Overall, I'm very pleased with it, though I suspect the nexxt generation will be needed to really make these devices (ipad and android) essentiqal, and easy to use for everyone.

For the archos, physical buttons, built in marketplace, and a slightly faster processor would be good. For the iPad, camera, expandable storage, and ditching itunes would make me happy.

I think the qandroid family are more likely to deliver the improvements that are important to me than the iPads...

Philbert
12-26-2010, 06:19 AM
My brother-in-law got a Galaxy Tab yesterday, which is what he really wanted for Christmas. I didn't play with it myself, but he kept raving about how cool it is. hehe He took a picture of me with it and it did come out a lot nicer than the picture I took of him with my Droid X.

starbase1
12-26-2010, 06:57 AM
Yes, it did look very good. Not so impressed with the price - it really takes something to make a first generation apple product look cheap in comparison...

NanoGator
12-26-2010, 07:07 PM
I received an iPad as a gift and Im quite happy with it. I originally wouldn't have purchased one because I have an iPhone 4, but now that I have it I'm pretty much sold. My computer has been off-line for the last week and Ive just been using the iPad/iPhone and have been surprised at how well they work. It isnt perfect but the couch-browsing experience rocks and Netflix is a killer app for it.

I can see how my 17" laptop could travel with me less, which is good considering the weight difference. I dont see it replacing one, though. That said, the form factor and the instant-on easily make the iPad a much better device for me than a netbook.

JeffrySG
01-09-2011, 04:17 PM
For those that use it, a new version of Handbrake just came out. It has new presets for the iPhone 4 and for the iPad as well. Go grab it!

Philbert
01-09-2011, 06:06 PM
Intrestjing to see where things are going, there were over 35 tablets shown at CES.

http://www.engadget.com/features/tablets-at-ces-2011/