Why I didn’t pre-order the iPad

Brad Willis

Brad Willis is a writer based in Greenville, South Carolina. Willis spent a decade as an award-winning broadcast journalist. He has worked as a freelance writer, columnist, and professional blogger since 2005. He has also served as a commentator and guest on a wide variety of television, radio, and internet shows.

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12 Responses

  1. Jay says:

    The iPad is a content consumption device – watch tv, read a book, etc. The problem is that we are now all content creators (you more than most) as well as consumers and I don’t think the iPad will be good for that.

    Besides Apples closed app development and lack of transparency is crap and will backfire as they screw developers.

  2. I’m getting one to wear as an accessory (think: Flava Flav’s clock). Pretty sure it’ll up my chance of getting laid more often.

  3. BadBlood says:

    As soon as the iPad went with the App-Store model vs. the install anything model (like a MacBook), it became irrelevant to me. My iPod touch is just as handy for the few additional things I want it to do besides play music.

    I REALLY was hoping I could take an iPad, and install online poker clients to it and have a luxurious and portable online poker machine, but that’s not going to happen.

    So that’s where my Netbook comes in handy.

    Oh – and get the Mac Book Pro as soon as you can. That way, myself and T can stop chiding you for using a dinosaur. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. DrHogie says:

    Long-time lurker of RER, but I had to post a comment about the Kindle:

    Something you may want to look into is a piece of free software called Calibre: http://calibre-ebook.com/

    In short: Calibre’s best described as iTunes for your Kindle. You can use it to manage other non-Amazon.com books and convert them for your Kindle — it’ll even send them over-the-air to your Kindle if you don’t want to connect your Kindle via USB.

    The biggest thing I use Calibre for is it will spider different websites (big ones like CNN, and as small as my local newspaper’s website), collect all new articles over the last XX days, and create a “magazine” with all the articles and pictures for your Kindle. It can be setup to run this weekly, so you’d always get weekly updates from any newssites you’d like to watch — and it does it free (well, you’d get the over-the-air charge if you send it that way).

    Anyway, you’ve given a lot to me with your incredible posts over the years, and I saw a chance for me to give something back.

    Thanks Otis,

  5. otis says:

    Thanks, DrHogie. That’s some great information.

  6. Maudie says:

    ” itโ€™s pretty nice to be able to prop the Kindle on a pillow and only touch it when I have to turn the page.”

    So very nice on a cold night.

    I didn’t even realize today was launch day for the iPad. You summed it up beautifully.

  7. BJ Nemeth says:

    Technology is not one-size-fits-all, nor should it be. What works for you may not work for me, and vice-versa. I’m only describing my wants, needs, and unhealthy addictions.

    If I wrote a blog entry like this, mine would be titled, “Why I Didn’t Purchase a Kindle.”

    I love reading, and spend several hours each non-tournament day reading a lot of different things. However, most of the things that I read aren’t the purely text-based books that the Kindle was designed for.

    I have wanted a book reader for years, and carefully studied the Sony eReaders (and others) to see if they would fit my needs. They looked like they were close, but they weren’t there yet. When the Kindle came out, I think Amazon finally got it right. Being able to download books without connecting to a computer is a big, big convenience factor, and the eInk does look impressive. But it would still be useless for 95% of the things that I read — I’d still need to use my laptop.

    I know the Kindle has an experimental web browser, but the reviews I’ve read describe it as frustrating, which is not the experience I’m looking for.

    When the Kindle 2’s price dropped in 2009, I was willing to pay that price for the functionality it offered. But by that point, all signs pointed to Apple releasing a tablet-like device that would overlap the Kindle’s functionality. I knew i’d have to wait a year, and perhaps 18 months, but I had confidence (based on the iPhone) that Apple’s implementation would give me much more of the functionality I’m looking for.

    I still plan to use my laptop for work, and I still plan to use my iPhone for listening to music. But I expect to use my iPad several hours each day, whether I’m at home or travelling, reading news, blogs, magazines, and books. As a bonus, it can also do countless other useful things.

    When books, magazines, and blogs are formatted for the Kindle, it is reduced to mostly text, possibly with a few black-and-white photos. And while I appreciate that eInk is easier to read than an LED screen, I’ve already spent several hours (or more) each day for the past decade reading an LED screen, and I haven’t been frustrated or suffered any ill effects.

    I also look forward to seeing the evolution of eBooks when they are designed for full color and a fast processor. Kindle books are just text files; iPad books have the potential to be more than any printed book could ever hope to be. (I plan to design a fully-functional iPad book myself this year, in a way that would be impossible on a Kindle.)

  8. otis says:


    All really good points. I think it’s a matter of time more than anything. The iPad’s price point was a little high for what I would end up using it for. It will be very interesting to see how the next five years treats the e-book market.

  9. BJ Nemeth says:

    One more thing — we are also facing yet another format war. The books you buy for the Kindle will almost certainly be usable on an iPad (if you were to switch in a few years), because Amazon already has a Kindle app for the iPhone that will presumably be updated for the iPad. You may have separate virtual libraries for Kindle books and iPad books, but they would all be accessible on an iPad. (I have already paid for 2 Kindle-formatted books that I have read on my iPhone.)

    The reverse may not be true, however. If I buy iBooks from Apple’s iBookstore, right now there is no way for me to get those onto an Amazon Kindle if I were to switch in a few years.

    I find it extremely unlikely that I will ever switch to a Kindle after using an iPad. Apple is a hardware company, and Amazon is a delivery service. It’s hard to imagine Amazon beating Apple on a hardware product now that they’ve been leapfrogged. Amazon may switch their tactics a bit and try to set up a deal so they’re selling the razor blades (books) and not the razors (eReaders). Apple makes most of their profits on the razors — iPods, iPhones, and now, iPads.

    Anyway, the next two years should be very interesting in the multifunctional eReader market, just as the iPhone sparked a very interesting era for cellphones.

  10. Random101 says:

    I am more of a magazine & newspaper reader due to my limited attention span and mental cpu. Do you have any experience with the more periodic type content on the Kindle?

  11. otis says:

    Random101–I read most mags and newspapers via my computer (sort of a morning read every day), so I don’t use the Kindle for that. I know G-Rob has the NYT pushed to his Kindle every morning and LOVES it.

  12. Sometimes I am really asking myself who is ready to such a high price for an average product. I guess the style of the Ipad is worth a lot of money.

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