I finally broke down and purchased an iPad 2. Now I'm pondering which apps I need to download...
It wasn't my fault. I couldn't help myself. While I was at the Design Automation Conference (DAC) last week, I was amazed to see how many folks were wandering around with iPads – predominantly the new iPad 2 flavor. Some were taking notes, while others were using them to search the web or even give demos.
Later, while flying back home after the conference, the guy sitting next to me spent the entire trip working away on his iPad. I would have loved to have been capturing notes on the various companies I'd met and the amazing things I'd seen at the conference, but I was sitting in coach and there was no room. The person in front of me had their chair tilted back, so if I had tried to use my notepad computer with its 17" display I would have "Done myself a mischief" as they say in England (at least, they say this where I come from).
So I dithered around for a day or so convincing myself that this was a legitimate business expense and not just an "I want something cool!" It turned out that I wasn't hard to convince, so I ran down to the local Apple store (everyone else I called said that they were sold out) and purchased the 64 GB Wi-Fi model (no 3G because I didn't want to sign up for yet another wireless contract).
I also got a Smart Cover, which has built-in magnets that snap into place on the iPad. The cover also wakes the iPad up when you pull it back and puts it to sleep when you close it. Plus it folds over to form a stand as illustrated in the image above.
I'm currently sitting outside on our back porch as I pen these words. I'm still getting the hang of this little beauty, but thus far I have to say that I am VERY impressed. I've seen reviews saying that the iPad's camera's aren't as good as they could be, but I took a wander around the outside of our house a few minutes ago taking pictures and they look fine to me.
One thing I hadn’t realized in that there’s no hard disk – the iPad uses only solid-state memory. This means that it’s “instant on” as soon as you open the cover. Compared to the netbook I bought last year, the iPad is simply light-years ahead.
Of course there's going to be a bit of a learning curve. For example, I understand that I can use iTunes on my PC (oooh, I just discovered that you can hold the uppercase key down while typing) to import and organize photos and then copy them over to the iPad, but at this time I don't have a clue how to make this happen.
Also, I'm currently writing this blog using the pre-installed "Notes" application, which seems to work OK for text. But while I was at DAC, I saw someone using a stylus to handwrite notes with accompanying sketches.
I just had a meander around the Apps Store to discover that there are a bewildering variety of apps out there. So first of all I'm looking for advice as to the best app for taking notes - ideally one that supports both keyboard and stylus input and also allows me to add line-art sketches.
Also, I would be jolly interested to hear about any other "must-have" apps (including games) that are uber-cool or mega-useful... any ideas?