Ten Things You Should Know About the iPad in the Real World
6. Fingerprints are not a big issue. You need to have extremely greasy fingers for them to show up when the screen is on. I’ll grant you they look messy when the screen is off, and I do recommend getting a plastic screen protector, even if a bubble or tiny fleck of dust trapped under the protector can be annoying.
7. There are a whole lot of useful apps out there for free. There are also a lot of lame apps that people want money for. Websites that review apps are more helpful than the Apple app store for determining which ones to download, though the app store does have ratings and reviews. I’m hoping the app store will improve over time. Right now there are so many apps being added daily it’s hard to keep up, and it’s also easy for developers to get people to post positive reviews for products that don’t deserve them. Look for apps with a large number of positive reviews.
8. There are dozens of apps for free books. Many of them are attempts to sell you books, but there are literally thousands of free books out there, including hundreds of classics (re: public domain).
9. The number of Kindle and other e-book formatted titles is growing rapidly. You won’t find huge discounts on textbooks, but they ARE cheaper than the hard-copy versions. You are just beginning to see interactive photos, videos and links included in eBooks, which I expect will become standard fare over time. Remember all those books that include a CD-ROM or DVD? The iPad is much better.
10. Don’t forget audio books as part of the iPad features.
11. Oh yes, and music! And syncing! And calendars! And my Google and .mac address books!
Printers and publishers should not discount the impact the iPad is going to have on the marketplace. Folks will be insisting that anything they want to read be available in an electronic format that can be read AND INTERACTED WITH on the iPad. It will not be enough to convert textbooks to eBooks or magazines to PDFs that you can “leaf through.” These documents will soon almost be REQUIRED to have interactive content and absolutely must have Web links for more information. Readers will need to be able to “drill down” to get more content than the hard-copy version. And, oh yes, they’ll expect to pay less for it than they are currently paying for the hard-copy version. Digital age consumers expect more for less.