In The Apple iPad 2: I Told You So, we looked at some of the reasons why the iPad is still the tablet to beat.
Over at Crunchgear today I saw a slightly different opinion that I also give a lot of credit to: it’s nothing that refutes the point that the iPad 2 is at the top of the market even before it’s out, but it does point out that it’s not perfect, and there’s a lot of room to improve here. Of the four things listed, I’ll give the CrunchGear team credit for two and a half of them, and put more emphasis on the half than they do.
I’m completely on board with them when it comes to wireless sync or an updated MobileMe, and I’m totally on-board with a Gorilla Glass display. I’m also on board heavily with their 1/2 item: 4G cellular. With tablets like the Xoom coming out and promising 4G abilities in the next couple of months, the iPad will be stuck riding 3G until this time next year, most likely – and by that time there’ll be a massive array of 4G modems, phones, and other devices on the market. Apple could have done themselves a favor and jumped on this one, but they didn’t.
I’m not so aligned with them when it comes to SD cards and removable/upgradable storage and the Retina Display – not because I don’t want them, but because I understand why we don’t have them.
The Retina Display is a serious high pixel density display, and if they had added it it would definitely have bitten a chunk out of the iPad’s battery life. Since they wanted to make it thinner and lighter, that really wasn’t an option. Apple had a choice – thinner and lighter with the same battery life, bigger with a Retina Display and same/better battery life, or even same size with Retina Display and same/worse battery life. They wouldn’t have added the Retina Display, shrunk the iPad 2, and released it with worse battery life. For this one, let’s see what the iPad 3 brings.
As for SD cards and expandable storage – this is a common complaint I hear from people about the iPad or other Apple products. Seriously guys: it’s valid, but get over it. Apple will never allow you to buy a 16GB iPad, slap a 64GB SD card or SSD into it, and end up with a 64GB iPad for less than they’d sell you one. As for SD cards from cameras or USB ports and such, if Apple added ports, they wouldn’t be able to sell you $29 dock connector dongles for your gear – they’re not giving up that cash cow.
The same rule applies to the iPhone and iPod Touch – removable storage would completely wreck their scaled sales model. Again – not that I wouldn’t want the ability to do this, but Apple’s got a racket going here and I don’t think they’ll ever let up.
All in all – it’s worth a read (although the comments down there are a little poisonous.) What do you think? What would you have liked to see in the iPad 2?