I’m afraid I may receive some hate for this post, but I am in desperate need for some insight and some help. I, like a few others here at GeekMom, stepped into the world of the iPad with the release of Apple’s third generation tablet. I also had my own expectations as, three weeks ago, I anticipated the arrival of my iPad 3. However, my expectations were different in that I was hoping that it would offer more practical work applications. That is where my priority lies; with practical applications, and not with the great entertainment and toy factor.
I suppose before I start listing my woes and ask for your suggestions, I should list some of the things I really like about having an iPad.
I like that the built-in sound is much better than the built-in sound of my laptop. I have to spend a good amount of time listening to music, and it makes that experience much better. I like that when I have time to take a quick 15 minute break from the mountain of work that is always in my face, a bunch of Draw Something games are waiting for me to spend some mindless fun with. I like that when I’m watching something, I can check and respond to Twitter without interrupting my viewing–my laptop serves as the source of all my movie and television viewing.
When my partner finally receives his iPad next week, we are looking forward to being able to share media from our respective laptops with greater ease. We are also looking forward to the fact that all apps will be shared and we don’t have to pay for them more than once.
My boys are happy with the iPad, but only because it allows them to use my Kobo Vox.
It is a fun toy. Unfortunately, that is all that it is. I value practicality over entertainment value. And if more money is spent on a tablet than was spent purchasing my laptop, there better be good practical value. I’m satisfied with the entertainment value of this toy. I’m extremely dissatisfied with the iPad 3 due to the severe lack of practicality.
Outside of monitoring chat during my radio shows, and reviewing apps for my Geeky Pleasures website, I’ve been unable to discover any practical use for it. For years, I’ve heard people go on and on about all these nifty ways they’ve been able to integrate the iPad into their work day. For me, these nifty ways are the stuff of myth and legend.
To top this all off, I become really incensed when I’m listening to music, decide I want to play a game that I have to review, only for the iPad to decide that it can’t do both at the same time–something I’ve become quite accustomed to doing on my laptop. Or, if I put the music away after finally begin to play the game. a push notification will come through, causing the game to close, only for me to have start over. Don’t even get me started about the fact music stops playing if I unplug my earbuds. And then there is the whole, my-eyeballs-are-going-to-fall-out-of-my-face-after-they-are-seared-to-death whenever I attempt to read anything on it for more than 15 minutes. It will never be an eReader of any sort for me, unless I have absolutely no choice because that is all a publisher is able to give me in the way of an ARC.
I can’t use the iPad to update my website because of the amount of media that goes into most posts. I can’t use it to check my e-mail because of the amount of e-mail addresses that I have, and the amount of media assets that I receive on any given day. I can’t use the calendar or apps like Evernote, because that would be redundant as I use Thunderbird with Lightning, and anything with a unified inbox would make it impossible for me to manage my jobs and e-mail addresses.
I’ve had people tell me they find the iPad useful for when they are away from the home because it allows them to keep up-to-date with different things. When I’m away from the house, I unplug. I purposely avoid the internet or anything that may interrupt the few glorious moments where the world isn’t tweeting me, e-mailing me, messaging me, vying for my attention, around the clock.
If I sound grumpy, that’s probably because that is exactly my mood at this very moment. I so want to love the iPad. I want to understand why it is that this piece of technology gives so many people geekgasms. At the moment, I am barely satisfied with my iPad experience. This is simply due to the lack of practical function. If I were to rate it based solely on entertainment factor, I would be satisfied, despite the fact the iPad cost quite a bit more than my laptop and will never meet the entertainment value of my laptop.
Unfortunately, I need more than that. Things must be practical if I’m ever going to be able to justify the cost and be satisfied with it.
So, please help me, geeks who have experienced the myth and legend that is iPad practicality. Tell me your secrets! You’re my only hope!