In recent years, the Apple iPad is one of the most talked about gadgets. Creating a huge buzz before it was even released, it was a highly coveted product that sold out at many stores in moments. Since its release, it has polarized public opinion on whether it is a fantastic, cutting-edge product, or whether it is an overpriced status symbol. The "-ilities," or characteristics of the iPad, help evaluate it as a product. Different ilities are more important measures and others are less important.
The most important ility of the iPad is its capability to perform various tasks. If the right capabilities are not present, consumers will not purchase the product. The Apple iPad is designed to consolidate all of your current electronic gadgets such as your e-reader, laptop and your gaming device, all into one compact package (Sawh, 2010). It has a host of technological features including a built-in wireless router, enabling you to browse the internet from virtually anywhere. You can play your iTunes collection through the built-in speakers and use the iPad's microphone to call and speak to someone on Skype.
The iPad's capabilities are enhanced by the amount of applications you have. Apps, as they are commonly known, are a variety of programs you can download to use on your iPad. Some of these apps can be useful tools such as the MathBoard, an educational program that is designed to enhance your mathematical skills. Other apps are purely for fun such as Scrabble. A large number of the apps are free and it is simply a matter of going on to the Apple website to download them. Others are available to purchase and prices start as low as $1.99.
By using the apps format, you can create your own unique version of the iPad. It can be a state of the art gaming device, or an indispensible business tool. The iPad's capabilities make it an attractive product for those that are tired of carrying numerous electronic devices and those that enjoy the customization that apps offer.
One of the biggest gripes many people have with Apple products is that they are only compatible with other Apple products. As such, the compatibility features, or lack thereof, of the Apple iPad are an important consideration for some. This consideration is particularly important for those that do not only use Apple products and Apple-approved software.
One of the key issues with the device is that it does not support Flash. This means that many of the flash driven websites that you look at will load with blank white spaces instead of content. As a rule, Apple products have never supported flash and it does not look like they intend to start now. For the user, it is a matter of waiting for many of the sites to convert their content to a compatible format (Pogue, 2010). Also, there are no USB ports or input jack sockets for accessories such as cameras. This means although you can talk on Skype, you cannot video chat. For many, this defeats the purpose of an application like Skype where being able to see the person you are talking to is a big part of the appeal.
However, the iPad, much like the iPhone and iPod, is compatible with Windows operating systems. It can be synced with any computer running Windows XP, Vista or the latest Windows 7 software. This allows those who do not have any other Apple products besides the iPad to have the same amount of access to apps and features as those who own an Apple personal computer.
On the other hand, all apps are required to be approved by Apple before their release and can only be bought through the Apple iTunes store once they are released (Bell, 2010). Some people find this approach less appealing than the open policy of many Windows-based apps. Although many perceive the control Apple has over the apps and programs constricting, there are certain benefits to this lack of compatibility, which contribute to the iPad's reliability, discussed below.
Apple products have always been criticized for their lack of compatibility, and the iPad is no different. As it is a common issue with Apple, it is an important ility of the iPad. Some of the issues have been mitigated, with the option to sync with a Windows computer. However, there are ongoing compatibility issues, such as the lack of USB ports, no flash, and controlled access to apps.
Prior to buying an expensive product, it is important that the product offer the longevity that a consumer would expect. Thus, the iPad's reliability is an important feature. The iPad runs on an operating system that is unique to Apple's mobile products. Prior to the release of the iPhone, Apple developed an operating system especially for that product. Called the iOS, it is a specially adapted version of Apple's OSX and it is one of the iPad's strongest features (Bell, 2010).
Thie iOS offers reliability with features such as regular updates. Updating the operating system can be done by downloading the system updates that Apple releases periodically. The benefits of these updates include improvements to the iPad and its programs, correction of any problems, and the addition of more features to existing iPad programs.
Additionally, Apple controls the apps that may be used on the iPad and other Apple products. Such a program will not be compatible unless Apple approves it (Bell, 2010). While this may be an irritating feature for some, it also provides important benefits that increase the iPad's reliability.
One of the biggest benefits is the low susceptibility to viruses the iPad has. Because all of the apps have to be authorized by Apple, the likelihood of an app being released with a virus in it is extremely low. Another benefit is that the customer knows that they are getting a good quality application that has been thoroughly vetted by experts and that is unlikely to provide any technical problems for them. The iPad's may be slightly more restricted by this approach, but the convenience of being able to get everything you need in one place may just be enough to balance it out. Overall the iPad is one of the most reliable computer tablets available thanks to its unique operating system and of Apple's complete control over the apps approved for its use.
Even if the iPad is an attractive product, for some the price may make it unattractive. Thus, the affordability of the iPad is also an important consideration, but only in light of the features and ilities discussed above. At face value, the Apple iPad looks like a very expensive toy. For the same price as this touch screen tablet, consumers can get a more comprehensive and higher spec laptop.
However, the iPad is a unique concept and once you factor in all the roles it takes on, it is easy to see why it can be a potential money saver in a world of ever changing products. By purchasing an iPad, consumers eliminate the need to buy many other high end electronic gadgets as the iPad is more than capable of taking over their roles. Although it is still not in a position to take away everyone's need for a laptop, the iPad still proves itself to be a money saving product with its current abilities.
Another ility of the iPad is its usability, or how user-friendly it is. However, this is not an important ility because, even if it were difficult to use at first, techie-types that are drawn to these types of products will be able to learn how to use it. Instead, the previously mentioned ilities are more important.
One of the biggest selling points of the iPad is how user friendly it is. Thanks to its touch screen design, the iPad's applications are so straightforward and simple to use that almost no prior computer experience is needed (Pogue, 2010). A multi-touch screen makes navigating the programs a simple process of touching the icon and dragging through the applications. Downloaded books and magazines are read in the same manner as real book or magazine with the virtual pages turning at a consistent pace with the user's finger. The large screen makes it easier to view visual items such as maps and charts without having to zoom in on details (Pogue, 2010).
With a cellular option available, the iPad is able to access the internet from almost anywhere meaning users can access their email, download new apps and browse sites all at the click of an icon. Thanks to a deal with AT&T, there is no contract to sign or any paperwork to fill in to make your iPad wireless. Simply go to the settings on the iPad and select the internet package you wish to buy. Users can choose between a megabyte amount or an unlimited option for the month. Tools and functions…