Notes on the new Ipad, part 1

I’ve had my Ipad 3 for three months now and since my whole previous experience with i-things and macs consisted in a classic ipod from 2003 or so it’s been quite the maiden voyage into the apple cult, here’s the first post in a series of notes about it.

First impact

The thing is beautiful, you don’t need me to tell you, gorgeous to the point that some of the design choices end up being even a bit unpractical, though nobody cares or complains about it.

Besides me i mean. So here it is: the backplate is so smooth that the ipad will literally slide like a puck when on a flat surface even if just slightly nudged. That is scary, especially if you’re not used to buying luxury, overpriced tech gadgets.

And it’s a fingerprint magnet. Though it cleans up magically with just a bit of cloth and elbow grease and even smudged it’s not annoying at all when in use due to the superbright screen.

Speaker on the back is not great, sound varies greatly depending on where and how you hold the ipad, but whatever really, i guess you couldn’t put it anywhere else.

Which brings me to the main point: this thing’s design is optimized for form over function, i hope it’s clear enough to everybody, there’s nothing wrong with that, i think it’s probably par for the course with apple, just quite strange for me coming from asus, dell and the old school kind of practical, ugly computer hardware

Turning it on

Honestly my first hours with the ipad were pretty much the best. There’s not much on it right off the shelf, but what is there works pretty well.

The browser is great for example, and that screen really makes it the best thing to read the internet on that i ever experienced. The ipad is the perfect machine to just have lying around when arguing with people how younger, if actually at all, Jeremy Renner is than Matt Damon. It takes ten seconds. The ipad wakes up instantly from sleep (huge improvement over any computer i ever owned) and a couple of taps later you’re on google, having the answer to any question at your fingertips.

If you actually care it turns out Renner is younger than Damon, though not by a significant amount. To spell it out further for you, Ben Affleck is actually younger than both. How about that.

Straight up on the con-side though Gmail doesn’t work very well with the standard mail app, which means either some workaround i couldn’t be bothered with (involving something dreadfully called microsoft exchange: dude i didn’t buy an ipad for that ish, come on) or adding a web app icon on the homescreen but losing new mail notifications. Whatever really, but still, surprised that i didn’t know about this from the internet, especially when this google apps integration works so damn well on every android device out there. Well, duh, obvious, all right, but maybe google could make a better job of advertising that this works great on their side, though yeah, gmail, greader, gmaps, googlewave(i kid), not sexy stuff for tv ads, i get it.

Then it came to other apps. Honestly my main point in getting an ipad was gaining access to the iOS app store, because well, duh, anytime somebody talks about a cool app it’s always iOS only really, and i thought i wouldn’t have bothered with a tablet that couldn’t run Animoog or the iElectribe really, but this is just a personal opinion, my own reason, if you use your ipad to take pictures or watch mad men i guess it’s cool, and i could do that myself too, but it has happened once in three months now, mad men summer hiatus not the main culprit here, so i guess that’s not for me.

But I think it’s fair to say that the iOS appstore has a way better reputation than google play. Honestly that has not been my experience so far, kind of a letdown actually, some good apps, lots of toys that i regret buying or even installing.

The ones that are great though end up being invaluable, and amazing really. I guess there’s a sweet spot of things that are useful, are better done through the touchscreen and could use a huge beautiful screen that is not easy to hit consistently. Some are cool, look at what you can do on the ipad they scream, but i already do that on the laptop, and better, so yeah, after the initial wow, i don’t bother.

Great apps i found and use on the regular

-Ia Writer

-Animoog

-GoodReader (though this app and the extra file sharing and wrangling functionality it brings could easily be implemented on the ipad as standard)

Favorite games

The Incident

M.A.M.C.

Bejeweled Blitz

Steambirds

Webapps

Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Soundcloud, Pinterest have all good apps, but ultimately the browser is so good that you can pretty much open a new tab and do the same things there.

Now for a list of annoying and suprising negatives to the ipad experience that nobody warned you about

-Itunes (mandatory, generally having a computer is mandatory to use the ipad)

-It won’t fucking charge when plugged into both my computer’s usb ports

-No filesystem whatsoever. Just a mess of workarounds and third party apps to share documents and send between apps or whatever.

-If your favorite band puts up a song for free download on their blog you can’t download it and play it from the ‘music’ app, put it on a playlist or whatever. You’re stuck streaming that shit in browser forever.

The itunes thing is really weird though. I mean consider this, you walk out of the shop with your shiny new ipad and you literally cannot use it until you’ve downloaded itunes on a computer and connected the ipad to it. Maybe i’m wrong and it’s not the case, it’s just i’m an apple noob or something, i honestly hope so, because this thing doesn’t make any sense to me.

I tried googling for answers, but any problem you may possibly have is always replied to with "you don’t get it, it’s working as intended"