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iPad Hits Pre-order, New F/W Suggests iPhone Multi-tasking

Gordon Kelly


iPad Hits Pre-order, New F/W Suggests iPhone Multi-tasking

Read about the new iPad Air and iPad mini 2

So Apple pulled its usual stunt today of being down for "updating" (it's getting old, no?) and returned with a pre-order page for the iPad. Will there be a stampede? You tell us...

For now the pre-ordering is US only which is smart because a) Apple treats the rest of the World with a certain distain, and b) it doesn't have a great deal of stock (600,000 is the current estimate).

Pricing comes in as expected ranging from $499 to $699 for a WiFi only model (these also lack GPS) and $629 to $829 for WiFi 3G. In GBP terms this means while you can get an entry level iPad for roughly the same price as a netbook (£329 for 16GB, WiFi only), $599 (32GB, WiFi only) - roughly £395 - is the lowest the majority are likely to opt for. At the other end of the scale 64GB with 3G is a hefty $829 (£547) and that's before accessories ($69 iPad keyboard dock, $39 case, $29 dock, $29 wall charger, $29 VGA adaptor, $69 wireless keyboard, etc) along with whatever premium we'll pay for being British.

On the plus side, I have worked out the target market for the iPad: old people. It's a coffee table device that is big enough not to strain ageing eyes (just don't mention the missing apps) and its lack of multi-tasking means technophobes shouldn't get confused.

The WiFi only iPad launches on 3 April in the US while the WiFi only and 3G models launch internationally in 'late April'. Check my full iPad guide for more information and remember: Apple is limiting pre-orders to two per customer. Think you can resist...?

In related news Apple Insider claims to have found evidence in the latest iPhone OS SDK that multi-tasking is being prepped for iPhone OS v4.0. Whether this will work across all generations (presumably the iPad will be included) is unknown and there is apparently a "long way to go" before it is ready (June, presumably). That said, this functionality is definitely needed before it becomes the iPhone's new copy & paste...


iPad Pre-order page

via Apple Insider

James Rounce

March 12, 2010, 8:12 pm

I can't see how this product will be a success, you can get a decent laptop or a netbook for less.


March 12, 2010, 8:26 pm

It will be a success because it's Apple and it's a nice piece of design. So what if it's awkward to hold, expensive, fragile & doesn't do anything that a netbook or laptop will also do. It's great looking, it has a slick OS, it will impress your friends and there are plenty of people out there who will pay a premium for this. It's total style over substance, but Apple understand that market and can exploit it, so good luck to them.

Here's to another eleventy million comments! ;-)


March 12, 2010, 8:34 pm

Regarding the "old people" argument: someone in my office tried to argue that when it was first announced, in fact he said "old people" and "people who may even not have a pc or laptop". I sat smug through his whole enthusiastic delivery and then just said "and what are they going to sync it to?"


March 12, 2010, 8:38 pm

Jesus bless. I'm saving money for botox.

If version2 ever makes it to the market I'd consider.


March 12, 2010, 8:41 pm

@drdark - "I sat smug through his whole enthusiastic delivery and then just said..."

their grandchildren will set it up for them.

Tim Sutton

March 12, 2010, 8:43 pm


To do what, sync to the toaster?


March 12, 2010, 9:12 pm

@Tim - errrrrrrr... no.

Case in point: A lovely 96 year old gent (Harry) lives next to my mum and his son bought him an iPod touch last year. The son used his computer to sync it full of Harry's favourite music and set up some apps. Every few months he'll sync it for him with new content and Harry loves it.



March 12, 2010, 9:25 pm


their grandchildren will set it up for them.

What about old people in the care home?

On a serious note, do not underestimate its potential as a gaming device generating money for Apple and the App developers. eBook reading is fast growing and iPad may well give Kindle and Sony E-readers run for their money. Because of the fast responsive UI most current windows based tablet-PC users would not hesitate to convert.


March 12, 2010, 10:07 pm

I wonder how long after release will it take for the first videos to show someone using it like a large iPhone on the bus/ train...

"Hello! I'm on my iPad... Nah, it's a bit rubbish."


March 12, 2010, 11:05 pm

@James Rounce:

I think the premise is that the iPad will do a few core tasks (web, email, video) better than either a netbook or small laptop, and that's what you pay for. At least, that's what Steve would have us believe. I'll wait until I've used one before deciding whether I agree with him.

Tim Sutton

March 12, 2010, 11:10 pm


That's something I did for my grandfather as well! Except obviously not with an iPod, because 1: I like the old guy and 2: Touchscreens are not a friend to the elderly. After a few months he decided it was something he was interested in doing for himself and bought himself a PC which he's now rarely off.

Why anyone without a PC or an internet connection (and obviously they won't already have a connection because they don't have a computer) would want £500 worth of tablet designed to be online or regularly synced is beyond me.

What on earth is the point? It can't do the job of an actual computer by itself, it's far too big for use as a PmP and it can't even be used to show pictures of your grandchildren without buying additional hardware.

It's a solution looking for a problem. Honestly, if this was being made by any other company it would be rightly laughed out of town.


Don't be mean to Gordon! We like Gordon!


March 12, 2010, 11:20 pm

@Tim - thanks Tim, though I think you're completely wrong ;)

For a start you have a broadband connection because they are virtually free. In my case Harry has Sky to keep him entertained and gets a free basic broadband connection and WiFi. Before he had his iPod touch this was for when his friends and family visit and/or stay over.

Next he doesn't want "the job of an actual computer" - he wants a simplified computer which is exactly what the iPod touch is and the iPad will be. The benefit of the iPad is a large screen with big buttons and one thing at a time functionality. Showing off photos directly on a 9.7in screen is also more than adequate.

You're not going to win this one. I've found the market and the iPad is for old people ;)


March 12, 2010, 11:26 pm

They all said the iPhone would flop, no flash slot, no Bluetooth File exchange blah blah blah

The Number 1 phone on the planet today

Yeah baby Gitsum.


March 12, 2010, 11:48 pm

@Ironduke: Ah, but mobile phones were a big deal long before the iPhone joined the party. With the iPad, Apple is trying to create a new market, which is a far harder sell.

That said, I agree with the sentiment. The iPad *could* be a roaring success, time will tell...

Tim Sutton

March 12, 2010, 11:49 pm


But you have to buy additional kit to get your photos onto the thing! Every old person I've ever met will instantly ask why they have to buy something extra when that other computer thingy in the shop over there can do it already for free, and oh look, it's also got a typewriter thing for typing and costs less.

It really can't be used as a computer replacement for the elderly. You can't attach a printer (or any other USB device without spending another £30 on an adaptor), it can't play CDs (photo CDs are basically cat-nip for septuagenarians) and it's so much more expensive than its capability warrants.

I'd recommend an iPod and a Macbook to an elderly relative over this any day of the week.

I never thought I'd type those two products and 'recommend' in the same sentence ever. Unless it finished with 'they be piled up in a landfill.'

Tim Sutton

March 12, 2010, 11:54 pm


Last years Number 1 UK TV programme: Britains Got Talent. Guess what? It's still vacuous rubbish.


March 13, 2010, 12:32 am

Ironduke: The books of Dan Brown and the works of Noel Edmonds are also highly successful... so they must be good then. :p


March 13, 2010, 12:33 am

Do you have to sync it? I mean can you not download music/video/books from iTunes?


March 13, 2010, 6:35 am

@Ironduke: The number one smartphone, don't forget that ordinary phones still outsell smartphones by a hundred to one or something.

@savant: So it's more expensive than a DS, heavier, with a shorter battery life and a price tag three times as high? I can't see anyone buying it primarily for gaming, although I'm sure plenty of timewasting games will be made for it if it does find a niche.

As for ebooks, remember that it uses a standard backlit LCD screen so it's going to be significantly less pleasant to read on than a proper ebook reader. There's a reason books are only going digital now despite being significantly smaller filesizes than music.


March 13, 2010, 3:05 pm

My neocortex tells me that I have no practical or impractical use for an iPad whatsoever; yet my hindbrain tells me buying one will keep me out of danger, make me more attractive for breeding and will chase away the shadows of the night. The ones that want to eat me.

So I guess I'll be buying one without remembering doing so. The perfect Apple customer.


March 13, 2010, 5:59 pm

Not getting involved... Other than to say:

@Tim Sutton - You should pop off and do some reading on a device before you start slating (*slate*ing, d'you see? Damn I'm on fire today!) it. the adaptor you speak of is only required to get photos on the iPad *directly* from a camera... You can sync any photos perfectly fine from your computer. Or your grandchild's computer for that matter...

Tim Sutton

March 13, 2010, 9:00 pm


Yes, my poor blind Apple brainwashed friend, but it's tough to sync from a computer if you don't have one. I was talking about the iPads lack of sense as a sole computing device.

I don't think the iPad makes any sense without a computer. It's hardly convenient if you need to take it to someone else's house every-time you want to upload and update and it can't do the things an elderly person would find useful from a computer. Like easily and *directly* display your photos to show to your elderly friends, easily and *directly* display their photo CDs, or print out directions.

You're not on fire. Which actually I'm sorry about :-)


March 13, 2010, 10:27 pm

Have to say I find the whole "old people" angle completely condescending towards them. My father is in his 70's - has a laptop, destop, wireless router, wireless printer, blueray, 42" Plasman, HD Media playing device and more. Sure, I help out now and then, but there are plenty of people in their 20s/30s/40s/etc who are equally dumb when it comes to IT stuff. @Tim - your comment about "every old person I have met..." was laughable. Actually many of the comments above come across as very snobby. Get over yourselves!

Will the iPad be a success - the honest answer is nobody knows yet. I know I wouldn't put any money on it. Lot of it depends on how it is marketed. Lot of it depends on luck and if it captures the public imagination. Sit back and wait and see.


March 14, 2010, 12:08 am

Cub: And can you sync videos taken on the camera to the iPad too? Or do you still need to find and use transcoding software...


March 14, 2010, 1:27 am

@Steve32 - I don't think we're being condescending, I think we're saying the iPad could be very good for older people.

For those older people who are technically proficient this is a moot argument - like your father, my father also is extremely tech savvy - but we're not talking about the happy anomalies.

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