I’ve been using the iPad heavily for 2 days now. There is an awful lot of potential in this device, ands there is no doubt that the best is yet to come.
If you are already an iPhone user, the iPad will simultaneously feel familiar but also so incredibly rich and powerful compared to it’s little brother. The extra screen real estate is in itself nice, but more importantly is how the iPhone OS’s approach to user interaction makes use of this extra room.
For example, the Mail app shows each message in full screen glory, but with a fast overlay window to show message and folder navigation. The usability effect is wonderful. Using Safari is now like browsing on a regular computer, except with a multi-touch interface.
I don’t play very many games on the iPhone or iPad, but the Words With Friends game (think Scrabble) is almost worth getting an iPad for just to play it. I suspect the casual gaming crowd I’ll a have a lot to look forward to with their new toy.
Battery life on the iPad has been better than I expected. A little over 48 hour into ownership and I’m down to 10% battery life. I’ve used it a lot, including a lot of reading, so it seems to hold up well there. While it does not compare to the extra long battery life of a Kindle, the device does so much more it seems like a good trade-off.
As far as being an e-reader, I like the iPad better than the Kindle DX (that I normally read from), but not as much as the regular Kindle 2. That device is sized so well, and the battery life is so good, it’s easy to see it remaining the king of its segment for a while. That said, I am a guy, so i like big screens, and here the iPad wins over the DX. The iPad is a touch heavier, but it still feels natural to hold. A minor, but very nice feature in the iPad is the physical orientation lock button, something which the DX has as a software feature that is hard to use.
I plan on using my iPad as a replacement for my laptop for casual computing. It seems like it is going to do that job well. They keyboard is easy enough to use even for this blog entry, and the heavy writers out there may find the keyboard dock option even better than lugging around a laptop.