I just had the opportunity to try the iPad out yesterday... OH MY GOSH!!! That thing is an ingenious invention. It’s responsive, it’s fast, it’s snappy, it works in the way life feels like it should work, it’s so intuitive that there is absolutely no learning curve at all. Such a polished piece of hardware, I had no idea it would respond like it did. And the screen is amazing. But what I loved most about it is that I feel like all electronics should respond the way the iPad does, I’d love to be able to interact with my computer with my fingers instead of using a mouse or trackpad, it felt like the virtual world became physical with this thing. I thought the keyboard would be challenging like the iPhone, but it’s not... it’s actually big enough that you can type pretty quickly on it. I told my brother, if we got one of those, you would want to find any excuse just to play with it, it’s so nice to browse the internet and interact with. I didn’t have a lot of time to go through all the apps, but I loved the way the apps interfaced with the iPad.
The screen is nice and big, it feels like you are holding a HD TV in your hands, everything is crystal clear and bright, text is so nice to read on this thing, it would actually make me want to read books (and I’m not much of a book reader), for the musicians, it could make a good piece to take with you to gigs, instead of the giant binders full of music, you could pull up any piece in your library, that would make for those “play freebird!” requests possible.
You probably don’t want to write a book or type very long e-mails on this thing, as nice and big as the keyboard is, it’s still not going to replace a full-size physical keyboard with plenty of space for your fingers. It would be great for consuming a lot of content on, and interacting with data and information, but I don’t think we’ll see a serious Photoshop type of application on this, but it would be great for finger artists to try painting with it.
I didn’t try any movies, but I’d love to try it, I have a 17” laptop and it’s great for serious work, but sometimes you don’t want to pull out a full-size laptop to look something up, with the iPad, you could walk around the Mall and interact with it while shopping, you wouldn’t want to (and obviously don’t) do that with a Laptop, but it could change the way a lot of people work, especially those who want something bigger than a smartphone, but more portable than a laptop.
It’s not going to replace laptops, it’s much too different, you can’t do the things on a laptop that you can do on the iPad, and vise-versa. For a lot of people, I don’t think the iPad will replace their laptop, but that depends on what they do with it. If you mostly read e-mails, view content, and read books, then yes, an iPad would probably be a much better option. If you do a lot of programming, photoshop, etc, you want a laptop.