[NTLK] OT: Mossberg gives thumbs up to iPad

James Fraser wheresthatistanbul-newtontalk at yahoo.com
Fri Apr 2 18:40:36 EDT 2010


--- On Fri, 4/2/10, Ryan <newtontalk at me.com> wrote:

> The point about shakey video relates to video conferencing on things like > Skype.  But also, most people would not use the iPad as a
> camera to take pictures of things, or a video recorder to
> record video. It's the wrong form factor.

> So looking at this, a camera does not appear to be a good fit for the 
> iPad, except those times when it's docked for video conferencing. It's a
> better fit on the iPhone or their laptops and desktops. This is why 
> criticisms of no camera are sort of moot for me. I wouldn't say no to a 
> camera, but it's clear the platform is not very compatible with
> a one.

Microsoft doesn't seem to share that same view, as (apparently) a 3-megapixel digital camera with 4x zoom has been integrated into the prototype for the Microsoft Courier.

Granted, the Courier has not hit the market yet, but I mention it because it may be that Microsoft perceives a demand for a camera-equipped handheld computing device whereas Apple does not.

As far as the iPad being the wrong form factor for a camera, I'm not convinced there is any way to know this until Apple decides to incorporate a camera into it (if they ever do).  Consumers seem to have a funny way of using (or expecting to use) products in ways that the manufacturer never foresaw (our Green Friend being an excellent example of this phenomena). 

Perhaps I'm demonstrating my own short-sightedness here, but I never would have guessed that cameras would eventually be incorporated into cell phones (of all things) a decade ago when I got my first phone.  Alas, the commercial advent of camera phones was still a good two years off, (2002) so apparently there *was* a demand for such functionality, even if I didn't seen it myself at the time.

We'll see if Apple has guessed right on this one or not.  I have to wonder if the Microsoft Courier will benefit from the iPad going to market first and showing what ideas do/don't work (à la the Newton and Palm) or if Apple will dominate the market simply by being the first to make their device available. [muses thoughtfully]


James Fraser

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