AP Photo

( First off– isn’t it lovely to see a black-turtlenecked Steve Jobs doing keynotes again? Seriously, before we all start bitching and moaning we need to take a moment to appreciate these little things in life. )

I admit that I am a little disappointed.  I went into this product announcement hoping for something I would buy off the shelf, like an OSX netbook or at the very least a Macbook Touch. In fact, I’ve held off for the past YEAR on getting an eee pc because deep down I wanted Apple to come through for me in this category, and was actually willing to pay a considerable price premium for it.

However, while I myself will not be lining up to pick up the iPad on launch day, I don’t think it is the irrelevant / useless / failure of a product that many seem to accuse it of being, and Daniel Tenner pretty much articulates my perspective on why here.  The iPad is priced low enough to appeal to a certain segment (+ the usual fanbase) of early adopters.  It will be interesting to see how the stories and experiences of how these users interact with the device motivates or demotivates the general public to catch on, perhaps in a later iteration.  There may also be key apps coming that really define the iPad experience, making its usefulness a little more discrete from the stuff people can currently do with their iPhones/iTouches (for example–something Slingbox-like would be awesome!) .

When the first generation iPhone came out, it had a fair number of disappointed detractors as well, and it was not something that I wanted to buy. However, I subsequently bought the next generation after playing with it in person, listening to stories from happy owners, and of course after Apple lowered the price and improved the overall functionality.  I could definitely see myself buying an iPad at some point down the line for these same reasons, and would be extra compelled to do so for a household instead of a student / single professional.

Here are some features that I would love to see in iPad version x :

– multitasking / flash — sigh.
– front-facing camera (this + skype + coffeetable could definitely replace the family landline and really help VOIP take off as the household standard)
projection keyboard
– tv! (not itunes tv )
– sleek pop-out stand on the back
– some kind of stylus and integration with your laptop so it can be used like a Wacom tablet (not likely given the Apple vs. Adobe feud)

As-is, I think the iPad is going to cut considerably into the Kindle market already. Yeah there are a few die-hard “e-ink” fans, but if I were in the market for a Kindle before I would definitely now reconsider.

But maybe Steve is saying that I should just go ahead and order that netbook.

Also, Steve, you’re running out of vowels!

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