Given that you have to pay to get the device, pay more for 3G, THEN pay $30 a month, THEN pay for content, all in addition to paying similar fees on your regular iPhone, I can’t see a lot of people investing in this thing unless it does more than an iPhone does, and right now it really doesn’t. The Kindle, at least, is much cheaper. I can’t replace my iPhone with this thing, why would I just add another log to the fire that’s burning a hole in my wallet already?
After all the hype has died down, I can’t help but think this is going to end up a dud.
Slightly edited from original post, but these are kind of my thoughts exactly. I was at this conference in Munich this week with lots of smart internet people and the “is the tablet going to be great?” question dominated a lot of conversations. Even before Apple even showed the iPhone for the first time we all wanted one. With the tablet I really needed to be sold on it and that just didn’t happen. (I was secretly hoping for a foldable, dual screen thing like that Top Secret Microsoft Project).
One interesting sidenote…
I can assume eventually apple will offer Macbooks with built in 3G for a $30 unlimited data plan with no contract.
… which sucks cause I am about to throw down and buy a new MacBook Pro. Like tomorrow. (Should I wait??? If so, tell me!)
Another sidenote (and I think I’ve posted on this before): I’m excited for people carrying large scale touch screen displays because of the social things that can happen around them. Think about when we call meet up at Tom & Jerry’s at that back table… a lot of us place our phones on the table. Now, I don’t expect that 60 days from now all those iPhones will be replaced with, er, bigger 10” iPhones, but the idea of a bunch of people sitting down and interacting with content on a shared screen is really interesting. I mean, maybe we make a foursquare app that’s designed for 4 people to look at at once? Maybe the app knows that your 4 friends are at T&J’s and shows you a map of where all you common friends are, or places to eat that none of you have been to yet. That stuff is pretty cool.
Sidenote #3: We used to think alot about big screens when I was at area/code. How can big touch screens change the way we think about board games? e.g. Is Monopoly or Risk or Sorry (or Catan!) different / better on a Microsoft Surface Table… or a 10” touch screen? And what if the 10” screen can sniff out the devices nearby so the cards you’d normally hold in hard are now held on your iPhone screen (anyone remember how the Sega Dreamcast had a screen build into the controller for secretly calling fake punts in Madden?). I’m not 100% on-board that 10” is big enough, but it’s a start… especially if you think less about the iPad as a “big iPhone” or “color Kindle” and more of it as a “mini Microsoft Surface table”
Anyway, these social interactions - games, photo sharing, social utility, etc - will be some of the more interesting things that’ll come out of this next round of devices (and the apps that run on them). Should be an interesting 6 months…