iPad :: The touch question

When I look back at the presentation the biggest surprise is actually the lack of touch. Let me explain. When Jobs showed the first iPhone he demoed the new touch metaphor, zoom, pinch, swipe etc. etc.

Giving the new size of the screen a whole new set of possible interactions are open. You don’t have to put 2 fingers on a small screen. You now have your full hand with all kinds of possibilities. E.g. I can imagine putting the whole side of your hand on the screen to move to another application. Or have a thumb stay on the screen followed by a finger touching the screen. Irrespective of the stupidity of these ideas there was none of that in the presentation. Jobs still used it as an iPhone. Think that’s also the reason for some letdown. In a way it’s a big iPhone. If he would have shown different touchmodes I’m sure that people would have seen the immediate benefit of the bigger screen. I can see the problem of having two touch metaphors to support. Things which work on the iPad bit don’t work on the iPhone. But still. Would have been so cool.

Update: Here’s an overview of the new multi-touch interactions which were shown during the presentation:
a) they went by fast
b) they didn’t feel as compelling as when Steve introduced the iPhone and just swiped it to unlock. That was amazing.

Next: How will we keep state and switch.


iPad & the cloud

Find it fascinating to see how Apple has it’s own approach in dealing with The Cloud. We all now the cloud is big, bright and the future. But it will take several years before the cloud can attain such a great experience as what the iPad offers right now, right here.

With the App Store you actually download the app on your device. And that’s been happening more then 3 billion times so far. The actual software is really on your device. Not some piece of software living in a cloud accessed by a browser. Sure Web 2.0 is great & AJAX can do amazing things. But in the bowser I don’t have the user experience an iPad is offering. Where things just fluently work and slide. Yes it does no multitasking and there’s no Finder. It’s just you and your content.

The cloud is great and has the future but it’s just work. It doesn’t put a smile on your face like the iPad does: you just don’t cuddle with the cloud.

Update: “But if I want to write a truly great app, it has to be a desktop app.”


iPad :: It’s now all up to the developers

Excited or not it’s now all in the hand of the developers. This is all about touch, touch, touch. The iPad will never be the primary computer for the professionals. My MacBook Pro, Apple Keyboard & Magic Mouse win any time when productivity is concerned.

But look at what Apple has actually done. They have given us a platform where touch is the only way you can interact with a device and put it on a relatively big screen. To that they added the Apple Eco-system where developers which has been so successful for the iPhone with millions sold and the amount of apps still rising. So far 3 billion apps have been downloaded.

I’m not a developer and I almost can’t wait to start playing in this new world: touch, big screen and fast. It’s a whole new paradigm which has just been presented to the world. To me it feels as if Appel has been partially surprised at their own success with the iPhone and are saying: You like touch? Well, we think this is how it could work. Play with it and see how far it can go.

And I think we should.


iPad :: the ultimate scifi device?

I have the feeling that I’m looking at a Star Trek episode. A thin tablet. A user interface where everything happens through touch. Just a screen. Super thin. It’s almost unreal. Is this still a computer?

Who will use this, when will we use this? I just have to jot down my thoughts. Is this something I would give my mother? Would I use it while sitting in a lazy chair? How long can you work with this before you want your old laptop back. Just something for enjoying while on the road? With 3G could it replace the iPhone with a wireless Bluetooth receiver in your ear? Your iPad in the bag and you receiving a call when in the train, cab on the bike or walking through the street?

I have the feeling it’s a game-changer. This is the computer we always wanted to have. Simple interface. It just works. It’s always on. You have access to all the content you want to be able to get. From videos to books, to music, to newspapers, to the web. It’s the ultimate content device. Mac for work, iPhone for connectivity and iPad for fun. And yes we need all three. Just like Steve showed them.

Ok so no calling yet. But Google Voice already has a great mobile app for that. So, no multitasking. Think that’s just a matter of time.

NB: Is this a mouse killer? during the whole presentation I didn’t see a mouse. And that from the company who popularized the mouse. That was logical for the iPhone but what about the iPad when we connect the keyboard and the dock. Will we move our fingers to the device when we want to move something on screen?

More iPad later…

P.S. Looking forward to find out which movie will be the first to use the iPad.
P.P.S. Chat of the day: “its hit . it will sell very well, I just put all my 401k in Apple Stock”
P.P.S. And best name so far: ‘Sofa Surfer’. (thanks to Farshad).

Apparently Avatar was the first movie they used the iPad 🙂

“I went back for a second helping of Avatar this Sunday. There’s a scene early on in the movie where one of the scientists walks across the lab carrying the “mobile computer slab of the future.” We’ve seen one of these in almost every sci-fi movie of the last 50 years. It comes free with a jetpack, I suppose. Except this time, one month later, my 12 year old son turns to me and whispers “Look Dad, it’s an iPad.”