When introducing the iPad 2 on Wednesday, Apple CEO Steve Jobs referred to it as an "all-new design." That assertion could kindly be called debatable. More accurately, the iPad 2 is a refinement and speed bump to the original iPad. Its new higher-performance processor and improved graphics are, to be sure, welcome upgrades. Its …
why said devices do just work...
iTunes "just works" does it?
Just work, huh?
I had an iPhone 3G and by no stretch did everything about it "just work". Initially I loved it - with the touchscreen ushering in practical mobile browsing, that particular product genuinely deserved to be called revolutionary. But by the end of my contract I was sick of it - many of the lockdowns were almost abusive in their restrictions and, god, what a mess iTunes is. You want to tell me I could connect the phone via a normal usb cable, drag and drop a divx video file to it as if it were a normal external drive and then play it on the iPhone and it will "just work"? Not on the 3G I had and not on the current generation, I'd bet.
Seriously, just try managing your collection manually on iTunes through a pc rather than this syncing madness (if you have a media collection of any size the syncing concept is just most hassle than it is worth and if you turn off syncing it wipes (wiped?) the media on the phone, which is absurd) and say it just works.
They do just work?
Evidence please and not just a url to Apples marketing blurb.
I can give you many links that will show just how many failures, errors and downright fuck-ups Apple are responsible for.
Hmmm, no icon for spinning beach-ball of death so Evil Jobs will do
Yes it does!
Just barely that it!
Close enough for jazz...
Current iOS programs can use iTunes file management/sharing/whatever it's called, so while the iPod app can't play divX, several other players can, and you just connect the device to iTunes via the cable and drag and drop files into the relevant app's file store.
It's not quite the same as mounting as an external drive, but pretty close in terms of operation.
Actually syncing isn't bad: on my iPod classic I just sync everything, but for my iPhone I have a collection of ordinary and smart playlists which sync to the device. Adding/removing stuff is simply a question of editing said playlists before syncing, a lot of which is drag and drop, too. Only difference in practice is dragging to a playlist in iTunes before syncing instead of dragging to a device icon in Finder/Explorer once the thing is connected.
Interesting comments bygjohn. Basically my phone had 8GB of storage and I have about 1TB of media. My music collection, which is smaller than most people I know, is about 6GB. So synching with any given folder on my pc was obviously a non-starter (unless I set up a crazy segregation whereby I had different folders to sync to the phone). The inability to play any of the formats I actually held my media files in was also an absolute arse. While I had the 3G I never once found an app that would expand the formats available - I ultimately had to just convert a bunch of tv shows into iTunes friendly formats and have duplicates. This is very much suboptimal - for my Desire I have a free Android media player app and can just put whatever movies or TV shows I like on there from my normal collection. Having basic drag and drop means I can do it from my work laptop without installing anything, too. *That's* "just working".
Synching to a playlist sounds better but by the sounds of it that's just dragging and dropping to a playlist and then synching the playlist through iTunes. Why the extra step?
Just as a last slap to iTunes; it seemed like every time I plugged the phone in I had to sit through a tedious and huge download of an update and yet it never seemed to get any better. I have no clue how they acheived that feat :)
Why don't you just drop the new things you want onto the phone icon in the sidebar? How hard is that?
It would therefore appear you plugged in an average of five times a year, that being the iOS release average for the two years immediately following the release of the 3G. You couldn't perhaps be exaggerating, could you?
I'm not one to claim that Apple's kit "just works". But I do think the Mac is the only device that properly talks to the outside world in terms of file formats. The iPod, iPad and iPhone seem to be very iTunes dependent. Suffice to say, if you'd kept all your media in the formats Apple supports (which are all standards from other industry bodies, so not proprietary — they've just been selectively chosen), in iTunes, then the autosyncing is a great boon. It turns a common manual task into an automatic one and makes moving between devices immeasurably easier. However, that comes at the cost of, as you found, about a million hours more work if you've decided e.g. that WMV and OGG are the things for you.
There's not really an extra step because the assumption is that you're already using iTunes. So you already have your favourites in playlists.
So I'll say that it works very, very well if you stick to the rules. I won't say that it "just works".
Not saying its bug free.
The SBOD has annoyed me for time to time over the last few years of using a Macbook. No one is trying to make the claim that Apple software is bug free.
I'm not sure if there has been an attempt to meaningfully compare bug lists and how they are dealt with in operating systems and associated applications. I've never used a system that didn't have bugs. My feeling is that Apple does a really good job.
The point is the design philosophy. That is what makes it just work. Apple software pays a lot of attention in design to the user experience. For a desktop / laptop or handheld system that really matters. Other companies have a lot to learn from Apple's attention to design - I think Google is succeeding there. Apple aren't the only ones making good software.
The other point of course is the hardware. The workmanship and design are simply outstanding. If someone can't see the quality and utility then I can understand them not wanting to pay the extra.
itunes Just works for me
Define what you want on you iPad / iPhone /iPod by setting up the necessary playlist etc - takes 10-15 minutes. Then connect the cable, leave it for however long it takes to transfer the stuff and you're done.
Manually dragging and dropping every single bit of media/book/apps etc you want on it? Who on Earth would do that? Probably the same sort of people who had to set alarm clocks to tell then when to switch the video on and off.
Paris - 'cos she'd do it manually as well.
Never buy anything early in a production cycle ...
as you don't know what problems will be experienced. Just like the Lemon 4 problems didn't surface for a week or two after release. Given that there have been wholesale hardware changes in this latest Jobs tablet, caution is warranted.
Then there is a new OS and we all know what happened last time!
No one mentioned what screw heads are used, either. And a cover which uses magnets sounds like a recipe for disaster and frustration and only USD$39 yet. But it does have the nibbled fruit logo on it!
Let others be the guinea pigs.
The industry needs the early adopters...
...and they are usually prepared to take the pain of doing the real stress testing in return for having the latest bling.
Good on them. I'll check it out in 3 months.
Another Lemon 4 rant?
Seriously, give it up. It's getting embarrassing (for you).
Luckily for us the iPad2 is released in the US a couple of weeks before it is released in Blighty - plenty of time to find out about the problems without the angst of deciding which is more important - waiting until you are sure it will work or being the first in your playground to own one.
Keep up, will you
The screw head thing turned out to be scaremongering bollocks designed to sell useless overpriced kits. And no I'm not linking because you aren't worth the trouble.
It just gets better & better. We'll be taking two engraved in White, ASAP.
Hope iMovie will immediately recognise an SD Card with H.264 MOV files without
having to go the PC/Mac/iTunes Sync route.
Plus I'll get an HTC Flyer 7inch for true portability just as soon as it's here & works.
Some of these Android announcements look very promising.
A terrific performance from Apple. Also good to see Steve Jobs walking unaided.
Apple Keynote now available as an iTunes Podcast for those who are interested.
My wife's iPad 1 has been faultless.
Big reductions on iPad 1 in the UK Apple Store.
No, I don't work for Apple.
Have masses of Windows PCs, Macs, Fujitsu Tablets, you name it.
Last years comments are below:
Post to The Register
A sensational announcement and just the beginning of a whole new range.
It will take a while to sort out the kinks and international launch of iBooks.
A year from now, we'll all have them.
Where is Zinio.com ?
Look to Amazon to port Kindle iPhone across.
What a great chess board.
Sure beats the EO440.
Apple's iPad Video says it all.
I might just come out of retirement.
Roll on UK availability.
Re : Outstanding
"Hope iMovie will immediately recognise an SD Card with H.264 MOV files without having to go the PC/Mac/iTunes Sync route."
iMovie may recognise the MOV files, and the iPad2 may recognise the SD Card, at least from a distance, but i'm buggered if I know how it'll read it..
Re: Re: Outstanding
That is too difficult, is it?
The camera accessory kit includes an SD card reader. You can use it to transfer photographs directly onto the iPad without a computer in between. So it's not crazy to think they may use that route for importing video too, especially as they're seeming to want to pitch the device as something creatives can use out in the field.
Mea Culpa for being so brief.
Of course, I've had the Camera Accessory Adapter for iPad 1 from day 1.
H.264 MOV files on SD Card import into iPad 1 but do not display.
These are from a Kodak Playstation Zx3.
So I'm expecting iMovie for iPad 2 to open these files.
Ditto for Flip Mino & H.264 from Pentax DSLR.
Don't really want to lug a PC/Mac Notebook around.
@AC re : camera kit
"That is too difficult, is it?"
No, no - and I didn't mean to suggest that it is absolutely impossible to connect the two - I was merely attempting to highlight the fact that some bits of kit can read SD cards without shelling out another 25-30 quid... it's not beyond the wit of man to think of reasons out why Apple might want to stop easy connection to mass storage - but makes for amusing watching the hoops that are required...
..and yes, I *do* like the iPad and indeed nearly all of Apples kit, but i'm not blind to some of more irritating points either, that's all.
>what was apple supposed to do for you to say, it is iPad 2, not 1.5. Get real, ppl, if you got PC with different graphics, different CPU, different case, new OS<
Faster graphics, faster CPU, updated os, for it to be worthy of the 2 monicker I would expect higher res screen (and let's face it, why nine times the graphic oomph? Unless to drive a retina screen - he's certainly not going to be selling ipad2 only games on iTunes, unless he wants to send the ms that the iPad 1 is now obsolete - which it won't be until 3 is out of the gate).
The camera is a sop to marketing forces more than customer demands.
Personally speaking, I'm glad the new one is more of an update, because by the time 3 rolls around, there should finally be a good assortment of other tablets about and the issue of mobile flash should be sorted one way or t'other - Zero Punctuation and channel 4od are the only video streams still shown in flash only format that I'm forced to watch on my pc, but that is annoying. I'm guessing USB and SD will never grace the iPad, and the walled garden will become ever more draconian, but so long as I can read my ecomics, ebooks, PDFs, surf and watch porn one handed, the iPad 1 will suffice.
What makes you suppose that Flsh will be sorted any time soon. We are at Version 10.x, a new patch kit is released every other week, and it still manages to crash or debilitate browsers and/or operating systems constantly.
Her on my Win7 office machine, running FF 3.6.14, I just killed the plugin-container.exe process, because the flash crap was consuming 100% of the available CPU. That is the current state of play, it is a bloated, CPU hogging slug with no place on any device, never mind a portable device with low power requirements. SJ is, IMHO, doing the world a service by keeping it as far away from the iPad/iPhone ecosystem as possible.
Adobe are incompetent as a development organisation. I mean seriously, is there a buggier more bloated piece of software made than Adobe.Anything?
Looks like nice gear
May get one. Or one of the G1 iPads, now that they're $350 as "refurb" from Apple or even less used on Ebay.
Beats waiting for the Windows Slate Forever vaporware.
Version 1.5 more like version 1.0
Thanks must go to the 15 million beta testers that have enabled Apple to build the device that should of the been the one that launched in the first place.
Steve would like to say thanks to you guys and oh, its £500 if you wish to upgrade to the first release
15 million beta testers...
Which manufacturer recently released a product that was missing 3 of its advertised features on day one?
No Flash. An SD card slot but nothing can actually access it as of yet. Promised 4G but you have to ship it back to the factory to get it upgraded when they make it available. Yes, Motorola, shipping vaporware promises where it counts.
And you are claiming that the iPad was a Bete? I think you should get your facts sorted sonny.
15 million beta testers..
Just because the original IPad came as specified doesn't mean it wasn't a Beta modeldesigned to test the market. Things showed it was rushed out. The OS was not complete not providing multitasking etc. Acceptable on a phone but on a tablet ?.... Examinations of the innards showed a space for a front facing camera, surely a killer feature for such a device, however this was not included.
It was put out incomplete in the knowledge the usual fanbois will buy them and then they would have enough time to smooth the edges so to speak. They did exactly the same with the iPhone 3G, with the same result.
Now I am not saying this is bad and probably better some others who always produce prototypes with no product, however personally I am glad I am not one of the 15 million, who is trying to work out how to maximise their resale value today in order to get an iPad that functions like it should of when it came out.
I don't buy into the hype but I'm very glad of the people who do since it means I have a better chance of getting a good product.
Shouldn't have bothered
Twice as fast a processor, up to 9x faster graphics for games, 1080i HDMI video out, lighter, much thinner, CDMA or GSM, two cameras... all why maintaining the same price point that other manufacturers are struggling to match with their version 0.5 offerings? It's such a lame update one wonders why they even bothered to release it! Apple must be getting desperate.
I have used Android and Nokia devices before I decided to get an iPad.
Now I have an Android Phone+iPad. The single most impressive feature is the battery life of the damn thing. If that means on a spec list, it does not look technically sound to engineers/geeks, IMO that is a reasonable compromise. (Flash/True Multitasking) - both battery hogging features.
Also ironically, unlike the iPhone, the iPad is actually also price competitive this time round, now that the Android competitors have been announced.
As for the article, seriously? Pretty shallow article, unless you also say what was needed for the extra 0.5.
The rumour list was pretty stupid, a 10 GBps interface for a Tablet?? Some understanding of BOM costs, chip/die areas and supply chain challenges when dreaming up a wish list would have been nice.
Otherwise I can ask a 15 year old geek what he or she would like it to be. Which is what this article looks like, inspite of most of it being "hit".
Not magical and revolutionary
Just practical and evolutionary. Which is fine.
It is version 1.5 because...
Apple shoot themselves in the foot with their spin. The talk was rampant before this announcement that there will be a new version in September. This version would have a new screen, SDRam slot etc.
If these rumours are true, and I cannot believe that Apple aren't behind some of them, then for me to go from my current iPad to the iPad 2 would be like going to version 1.5, it isn't different enough. This alledged September model is what I would call iPad 2 and it'll take until September for the developers to make use of the upgrades anyway...
I somehow doubt that the september rumours are true though... I think it is more likely a year from now and by then I'll hopefully have a Windows 7 tablet like my old HP TC1100 (which runs Win 7 fine, does everything I want but needs a pen which is annoying).
(mines the one with the iPhone, iPad and MacBook in the pocket, next to the Omnia 7)
I was slightly disappointed
I was hoping for some form of high pixel density display like the iPhone 4. If I were a betting man I'd say the rumours of production issues were true and the "real" iPad 2 will be the upgrade they announce next March.
Which begs the question of where the hardware design for the iPad 2 came from on short notice. I bet when the iPhone 5 is announced later this year it's the same dual-core "A5" hardware but slightly downclocked to suit the smaller battery. Which would mean this time the iPad 2 really is a giant iPhone. ;)
Either that or the rumours of a 7" iPad were true and the hardware from that was scaled back up to the 10" case. It would make some sense as a 7" 1024x768 screen would have a pretty high pixel density...
Anyway, all speculation for now. And why did Apple take the UK web store offline for all of yesterday when they aren't even selling the iPad 2 yet? Do they need to take the whole thing offline to adjust a few prices???
First, you point out that the iPad2 only does video, not stills, than you bemoan the fact that there is no built-in flash like the iPhone4. WTF! The Register is to technology publishing what Top Gear is to motoring!
But that is why we love the Register - because it is to tech what Top Gear (a most entertaining and popular program) is to motoring.
That no-one with any sense would use either Top Gear as a car buying guide or El Reg as a tech buying guide is rather a given - you may as well complain that you were disappointed with the results when you tried to use BBC News at 10 as a travel guide or Fox News for any news.
Biggest problem I have...
...isn't hardware related anyway (and it IS a biggish problem in the case of the one fondleslab that we have in service here, though it's thankfully not my slab); it's the inability of third party apps to use the USB connection to sync. Case in point - Documents To Go. Sold via Apple's store, so it's an approved app. Has the facility to synch documents between slab and PC. Except that Apple won't allow use of the USB connector for synching, forcing you to use WiFi. This requires me to set up a WiFi network - completely unnecessary for ANY other purpose in the area concerned - purely to service that overpriced, underspecced Jobsian abortion. That's just shit. The next person who tells me "but Apple stuff just works...", I swear...
You sound like an IT guy...
Are you really one? then get a clue. One of the biggest complaints against apple is that they can't do wifi sync, only via USB and the horrid iTunes.
Syncing over WiFi until now at least requires jaiblreaking the device or using a messy solution based on some pathetic file sharing apps from the apple store where amateur developers have written their own lame implementation of SAMBA or WebDAV.
The iPad only needs WiFi for internet connectivity/email etc. Do your homework next time.
Having said that, I do feel sorry for your users if your attitude to setting up a WiFi network is that it's SO bothersome. Obviously easing their work and increasing their productivity means nothing to you.
I've met admins like you and always had to fight off an intense desire to kick them.
You're a little out of date
That used to be the case, but current iOS apps can transfer files via iTunes/USB.
Dimitri, you sound like a tool. If the only reason to set up a wireless network is to work around a ridiculous constraint on a stupidly constrained device, then it IS a pain in the arse, because proper network maintenance is a non-trivial amount of work. Not to mention that any claim of wireless networking "improving productivity" is shaky at best...
I've met users like you and manage, with a bit of effort, to maintain the professionalism required not to throttle them. It's a daily struggle, mind you.
You can synch individual files via iTunes. This is useless when the person needs to synch across multiple files and folders. You can argue all you like, but I suggest BEFORE you do, you read http://support.dataviz.com/support.srch?docid=14362 and take into account the fact that I've tried it, researched it, and it doesn't work.
Except that you don't have to...
...because the device isn't stupidly constrained this way! It is stupidly constrained in that as of iOS 4.2.1 you CANNOT use WiFi for synching, you can only use USB.
Which you would know if you had actually understood my comment i.e. read it properly...
As for proper network maintenance being a "non-trivial amount of work" I suggest you go back to the BOFH cartoons you came from...
Dimitri, you are a tool
The ONLY way third party apps are allowed to synch (e.g. Documents To Go , a pretty prominent application for business users) is WiFi. Read http://support.dataviz.com/support.srch?docid=14362 or http://help.coradine.com/discussions/problems/1747-ipad-sync-will-not-work-via-usb or https://mentalfaculty.tenderapp.com/kb/mental-case-for-ios/can-i-sync-my-mac-and-iphoneipad-via-usb . Smash your stupid, ignorant, sanctimonious, patronising fucking face into the screen if that's what it takes to get the point. I'll help you do it, no charge.
Then STFU, and fuck off back under your rock.
And having to put into place a WLAN to get around the fact that Crapple disable synching over USB, because that's what you have to do, is nearly as stupid as you. Nearly. Now I HAVE put a WLAN into place in an area that does not need it for any other reason, because I LIKE making my users' lives easier. Even though it is for just one guy and his fondleslab. That doesn't change the fact that Crapple are tools for requiring it, and that you are a tool for attempting to justify them doing so. And I've met people like you, too, and only hope that you never breed.
Thanks - you must be right!
So your point is I'm a tool because your user is using a poxy little app that doesn't sync over iTunes?
Thanks ever so much for the kind words. I actually took a minute to check the link you posted. I can see why you're confused. Its because of two reasons:
1) These documents do say that "Apple does not make USB synchronization available to third party applications".
2) You're a fool. You've read all this and not managed to understand that you *can* sync over USB and you *can* sync multiple files and folders, you just can't do it *without* iTunes.
All apps downloaded from the apple store can sync via USB. VLC syncs movies, Stanza syncs ebooks, I have at least three apps that sort and sync folders (e.g. Filer), even my web browsers sync their downloaded files and bookmarks.
The difference which you could have picked up on if you had learned to read in whatever 3rd rate school you attended, is they *only* sync via iTunes. You can can even export directories from the iTunes sync store to elsewhere on disk.
The developers of the apps you are using don't support this because they want to sync filesystems, not just files which is a different thing altogether.
Check http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1386 which tells you all about syncing straight from the source - you could have googled it, if you didn't have the IQ of a lima bean.
Now I do agree that its horribly stupid that iDevices don't give you access to their filesystems unless jailbroken.
But not as stupid as you for going apeshit, just because your little app doesn't play the way you want. Your guy could have figured out a way to get his documents into his PC using iTunes, he could installed another office suite, or hell just jailbreak the damn thing and do whatever you want with the filesystem.
Since you don't want to do this and you DO want to make your users' life easier, how about YOU STFU and stop wasting our time with your b*tching?
I dislike defending apple but aggressive twits like you just need to be put down.
Talk about people who shouldn't breed - that clearly applies to your parents but sadly it's too late for that now.
the irrelevant crap, bluster and obfuscation from your post:
1. I was right and you were wrong about third party apps being restricted from using USB to synch.
2. I was right and you were wrong about WiFi being not only supported but required for synch in such circumstances.
3. I was right and you were wrong about it being an Apple restriction.
In fact, on every substantive point of fact, I was right and you were wrong.
4. Calling me an aggressive twit is the utterest height of hypocrisy, and leads me to another substantive point
5. I'm right about you being a tool as well.
Oh come on...
It really isn't so bad. Apple do what they do best and that is producing an integrated solution. The competition really has not caught up yet, if it ever will. Naturally you'll find a few people who will buy other company's tablets, just as some people bought Zunes? Just as John Molloy says its not about spec. Its not about whether the camera is better or worse than the others? It is what you can do with it, and how easy it is to use its "output" Some people just want to use a product, not constantly fiddle with it's workings.
"...assuring better performance on apps that can take advantage of that extra core."
If it's up to the application to make use of the extra core, then that is a massive FAIL for iOS. Even the 'obsolete' Symbian OS can manage multicore effectively and efficiently without any real changes to the application code.
Symbian and multicore? You gotta be kidding, Symbian hasn't even been shipped on any multicore device and they started implementing SMP support just a couple years back, when OS X and Linux have had it for a decade, and it's something that is not easy to get right.
Multicore support in OS X, just like in Linux, does not require the app to support it directly. The kernel will evenly distribute threads (kernel and user space ones) between cores, so if two apps are running, or an app and a kernel task, those will make use of the multiple cores automagically. If your app uses more than 1 thread, those will also be load balanced between the cores, and even if it only uses the single runloop thread, other threads in the system will make use of the other cores.
There is this little thing called "Grand Central Dispatch" which was introduced to iOS in version 4.0 (and OS X 10.6 prior to that). Many of the API functions were modified to make use of it. At the same time, developers were encouraged to begin using "blocks" to encapsulate code that can be run in the background.
As such, even old applications that don't use "blocks" may still see a benefit simply because of the updated API code. This is in addition to any apps that will have been explicitly multi-threaded (i.e., most, if not all, games).
3rd party suppliers
"Not that Apple has ever worried too much about pulling the rug out from under it's third-party partners"
indeed.. from Bloomberg: "Zagg Inc. which sells accessories such as iPad cases, plunged 24% after Apple introduced its own magnet case for the tablet."
Eat more Kebab
The Apple case wont appeal to all, sure it looks nice. But most people want to protect the whole device not just the front.
Zagg probably didn't have anything new in the pipeline for iPad2.
I guess the trolls needed /something/ to criticise about the new iPad - "it's not different enough" will have to do I suppose.