Romance, Historical, Contemporary, Paranormal, Young Adult, Book reviews, industry news, and commentary from a reader's point of view

10 hours with the iPad: Why the iPad Is Not a...

I’m using the bluetooth keyboard to type this review out. I like the iPad a lot. I can foresee using this device everyday but it’s not the greatest ebook reader. I’m not certain if my frustration stems mostly from the software (the reading applications) or the hardware. I don’t think the iPad is a Kindle killer (or dedicated eink device) because I think the primary purpose of the iPad is not long form narrative reading.

Is multitasking a big thing?

Yes, and no. The iPad is fast. It’s so fast that you don’t always notice that it can’t run more than one program at a time. However, because of the bigger screen size, you wish you could have your email open on side and your browser open on the other. Or maybe you would like a tv app open at the same time you are typing out your emails. Multitasking is missing and it is noticeable.

What about PDFs?

You have to either purchase a third party app to view PDFs or you have to convert your PDF to epub to get a PDF onto the iPad. I have looked at different paid PDF applications but I have not come to a decision on any of them. Right now, it doesn’t look as if there is reflow PDF viewer or one that allows for annotations.

What about books with color photos?

This is one area in which the iPad really shines. I bought Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin in ebook format. The epub version has gorgeous full color illustrations and it looks just as beautiful on the iPad as it looked in paper.

Graphics

Is it going to kill the Kindle?

No. I have three reasons why:

Hardware: The iPad is fairly heavy. It weighs 1.5 pounds versus the Kindle’s 10.2 oz. Plus, it is unuseable in bright sunlight. You really, really need to have some shade to be able to see much of anything. You can see the comparison between the two. The indoor picture is the exact same screen, finger prints and all.

iPad insideiPad outside

 

Shopping experience: While the iBooks app (available for the iPad only) looks nice, it isn’t useable. The shopping space is geared toward readers of the most popular hardcover fiction and non fiction books. The romance section is browsable only by contemporary and historical books. (click on pics for larger image)

ibook romance books

On the up side, you can easily download and read a sample. On every page and at the end of the sample, there is a buy button:

Buy Button

The iBooks app store is heavily geared toward hardcover readers. As stated above, the are only two subcategories that you can browse. There is no paranormal section. Further, when you search for “paranormal romance”, nothing comes up. You have to search “fantasy romance” or “ghost romance”. And even then, you get only a few results.

When I searched “fantasy romance”, I pulled up 42 results. The content is sparse and there is no easy way to browse. Even the categories that they do have – contemporary and historical – is barely populated. This screenshot is of the entire contemporary shelf.

Contemporary Romance Selection

Further, the prices are distressingly high. Hachette, HarperCollins, St. Martin’s Press, and Simon & Schuster have priced all the digital equivalents of the mass market at the same price as the print- $7.99. Penguin has priced the digital mass markets at $6.99, $1 less than the print versions. There is nothing from Random House, Harlequin, Dorchester or Kensington.

The Software: The bookshelf is kind of hideous but its functional and you don’t have to stare at the faux wood shelves if you don’t want to. iBooks allows for a list like option:

Listing of iBooks

You can sort by Date Added, Author, Title and Category. But the categories are dependent on the publishers’ metadata which is pretty awful. Take, for example, Soulless by Gail Carriger. The “category” is FIC027030.

Categories

You can change the metadata using the “Get Info” menu option via iTunes:

Metadata screen for iBooks

Inside the App, however, the design is lovely, particularly reading in the landscape mode. The visual image mimics a two page book and I like that a lot more than I thought I would. Apple put some effort in the details. At the edges of the book, it appears as if there is a dust jacket covering a hardboard binding.

full page ebook

You can change the font size and are allowed five choices of font style. The brightness can be changed from within the app itself (this is a departure from the iPhone). In the bottom right hand corner, it tells you how many pages you have left in the chapter as well as telling you at the center bottom what page you are in the book.

You can highlight, use a dictionary, and copy if the publisher allows this but you cannot add notes. This is a big frustration for me. You are able to add your own, unencrypted epubs but no other format.

In summary, the iBooks Store is sparsely populated and unbrowsable unless you only want to read and buy contemporary and historicals that Apple or the publisher have determined should meet your gaze. Organization is hampered by the publishers failure to provide good metadata resulting in odd names, missing covers, and inaccurate tagging information. The App itself is crippled by the lack of annotations. Thus, the iBooks Store and App won’t kill off the Kindle, nook, Kobobooks. There is a place for them, but I think the right price is $150 or under. The real drawback for eink readers is a) the time it takes for the pages to turn and b) lack of an integrated light.

If it isn’t a great ebook reader, why do you like it?

Because it does other things so well. As an internet browsing and email machine, it’s far superior than the netbook. As a video viewer, its more comfortable than my netbook or my iMac. The on screen keyboard in landscape mode allowed me to tap out an entire review as I waited in line today at various locations running errands. The battery life is hella good. I had the iPad running from 10:00 am to 7:30 pm before I hit a 20% battery warning.

I love the Epicurious App and think that the iPad will make a great kitchen device. I even took it with me when I went to clean the bathrooms and watched/listened to Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution on the ABC App.

I think that there will be more Apps that will utilize the fast processor and it will totally replace or be a first computer for some people. My mother in law, who has never wanted a computer, believes that she would like one because of all the different things it can do for her. But for just ebook reading? I’m not convinced that it’s the right device for those who JUST want to read ebooks.

Conclusions: If you buy a dedicated ebook reader, I think it is more important than ever to get one that is cross platform compatible. Right now that means nook, Kindle, and the forthcoming Kobo Books reader. At $149, I can see the Kobo being a huge winner. The problem with the Kobo books reader app is you cannot add content yourself. This is a misstep that I hope Kobo corrects.

If you want to buy the iPad solely as an ebook reader, I would advise against it. It is heavy. You can’t read outside and will cause more eyestrain than an ink device. The iBooks store has meager romance offerings at high prices.

If you are looking for a true multi function device that allows you to cruise the web, send emails, watch videos, do any number of things via the third party apps, and read, then iPad is a good value. If your primary thought is to get this to read digital books, I would tell you this. I plan to get a dedicated ebook reader, either a Kindle or the Kobobooks within the next couple of months, even though I am thoroughly enjoying the iPad.

(more on the individual iPad reading apps later).

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

83 Comments

  1. Sarah Mayberry
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 03:41:32

    Thanks for this, Jane. I have been gagging for the iPad to come out, being a semi-recent Mac convert, but as soon as I saw it had the same LED screen as the iphone I knew I probably wouldn’t get one, and you have just confirmed my suspicion. I have a laptop that gives me portable computing – portable enough for me, anyway – and I have an iphone. Now I want a dedicated e-reader that will allow me to download ebooks easily from wherever I am in the world. I want an e-reader that is easy to read after I have spent all day staring at a computer screen. I want something that is easy to take with me when I travel. And I want an e-reader that doesn’t commit me to buying from only one retailer. It doesn’t sound as though iPad is the solution I was hoping it would be. So… I guess the search continues. But your willingness to take one for the team and splash out on an ipad to review it for the rest of us was very much appreciated!

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  2. Teddypig
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 05:10:54

    Try the Good Reader App see if that meets some of what you want…

    http://www.goodiware.com/goodreader.html

    ReplyReply

  3. Jayne
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 06:01:53

    I’m wondering what “English Light Romance” and “American Light Romance” mean. Less calories? Diet Romance?

    ReplyReply

  4. Aislinn Macnamara
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 06:31:48

    It’s really bizarre seeing Winnie the Pooh listed directly under a Lora Leigh novel.

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  5. Shannon Stacey
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 07:03:51

    The problem with the Kobo books reader is you cannot add content yourself.

    So you can only read content bought directly from their site? Even for $149, that wouldn’t work for me. Since buying the nook, I think I’ve bought maybe four titles directly from B&N. The majority of the books on it, I bought elsewhere and sideloaded.

    I love seeing the iPad reviews, but I’m still committed to saving my pennies for the iPhone’s rumored arrival at Verizon Wireless.

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  6. Jane
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 07:16:45

    @Shannon Stacey: I know Kobo Books App doesn’t allow you to add in new content but I don’t know if the dedicated reader is restrictive.

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  7. Mireya
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 07:29:27

    You pretty much confirmed what I was thinking of. I had a discussion with a friend and he pretty much told me that, as of right now, the iPad is very good, but reading is not it’s main purpose.

    I think it looks really cool, I may even get one when I start working again, but as you recommend, for reading, I’ll stick to what I have, my trusty Sony eReader or my Axxim Pocket PC. When other, better dedicated reader comes into the picture, I’ll “upgrade”.

    Thanks for the detailed review from a romance reader’s perspective, Jane.

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  8. Sandia
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 07:34:38

    Jane – what’s the iBookstore’s policy on downloads? In iTunes, I an download the digital content on the 5 different computers that I’m registered to, I hadn’t read much on what the iBookstore’s content policy was? I think you mentioned it can only be read with the iBookstore app on the iPad? Can you share with someone else who’s also got an iPad, or maybe download the app on you iPhone?

    edit… and did you say that you could already get Changeless in the iBookstore???? Ugh – they pulled the release date from the Kindle bookstore back by a week and made it available for Apple?

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  9. Jane
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 07:51:40

    @Sandia: There is no iBooks app for the iphone. I think you are allowed to share the books if they are on your same network but you can’t hook up an iPad like you can hook up 6 Kindles to one account.

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  10. Sandia
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 07:54:52

    @Jane: Thanks! So potentially I can still go between my iPad and iPhone if I’m reading one book and didn’t bring one or the other with me?

    Do you think that from a portability point of view, you’d carry this around in your bag with you as often as you do your other readers?

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  11. sandyl
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 07:58:53

    Thanks for the very good review of the iPad. I bought a nook and I really like it. On Saturday, all the new mass markets (at least those I were interested in, including Changeless)were finally available. Unfortunately, I still cannot purchase the Ariana Franklin from B&N. The mm were all at full deadwood price. A little unfair, if you ask me.

    I wonder why you didn’t mention Sony. Sony was simply too expensive for what I wanted, but I know other people really like it.

    I do not like the way Apple became the leverage that publishers used for their pricing. Especially as the iPad is not really a dedicated ebook reader.

    Again, thanks for the iPad review and all the other information you’ve provided about the publishing industry and ebooks.

    ReplyReply

  12. Keishon
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 08:17:59

    That thing is way too heavy to just hold and read. The iPad is excellent for other things but reading ain’t it. I think it was TP who said that the iBooks app seems to have been thrown in as an afterthought. Love the color illustrations. Kids would get a kick out of that. Prices, not surprised at how high they are at the ibook store. I’m thinking that the iBook store will be more populated as the days move forward? Surely that cannot be their only inventory of books. At launch, the choices were few and far between. Good review. eInk still lives for now looks like (looking around nervously for Mike Cane)

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  13. Bonnie
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 08:28:12

    Thanks for the review. And it was so much fun following you on twitter yesterday.

    I want one, but I don’t need one. Can’t justify it. But I am heading over to the Apple store today to play. That place is like Disney World for adults.

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  14. Jane
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 08:29:16

    @Sandia: To switch between the iPad and iPhone, you would want to use one of the other ebook apps like Kobo Books or Kindle. BN has an iPad app but it hasn’t been approved. You can’t sync your content between your iPhone and iPad using the iBooks app.

    As for portability, yes, I would carry it around. All my handbags are fairly big because I’m used to carrying around my daughter’s handbag, sweater, and various stuffed animals, etc. along with snacks.

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  15. Jane
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 08:30:45

    @sandyl: I didn’t mention the Sony because it doesn’t have cross platform capability. I really like the Sony Pocket reader as a dedicated device. It’s quite portable, easy to use with one hand, and the screen is of good quality. Sony’s read epubs. But there is no way to start reading on the Sony Reader, go to the iPad, and then read on your laptop, and then read on a smartphone like an iPhone or a Blackberry. I see cross platform devices are more future proof.

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  16. Christine M.
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 08:44:21

    @Jane: Thanks for explaining what you meant with cross platform capability. Personally, this is not something I was looking for when I bought an ereader, but then I’m in Canada and our options are more limited.

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  17. Suzanna Medeiros
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 08:56:30

    I preordered the Kobo eReader a few days ago and your comment concerned me. I looked up the FAQs on the eReader site and found the following (I can now breathe easy again):

    “How do I buy books for my Kobo eReader?
    Simply click on the Store button in the Kobo Desktop Application to search or browse our extensive catalog of titles. Plug in your eReader to your computer to download your new book onto the device.
    You can also use the Desktop Application to load eBooks purchased from other vendors, provided that they support Reader® Mobile Technology from Adobe Systems Inc.

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  18. Melissa
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 09:26:21

    Thanks so much for the review, Jane. I’m a techno geek and wanted the iPad to play with, but couldn’t justify it as a unique device that isn’t already served by my eReader or netbook. I just don’t do much with portable video or apps.

    Glad to know my decision not to buy right now was a good one.

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  19. Chicklet
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 09:55:02

    How would the iPad be for textbooks? It sounds like it’s too heavy to hold onto and read while standing on a bus or a train, but if it’s light enough to hold with both hands while sitting down, it could work for textbooks. Prop it up on its stand and you can have it on a table while you’re taking notes. The full-color display looks amazing, especially considering even the Kindle DX is still black-and-white only.

    If Apple tweaks the iPad and allows for note-taking, I could see it taking off as a textbook device — just download your semester’s worth of books. You could even opt to pay a lower price for the file and “rent” it until just after finals.

    ReplyReply

  20. DS
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 10:09:26

    Good review, answered all the questions I had– I’ve been back and forth on ordering the iPad because on one hand I could get the company to buy it, on the other hand I already have things that do all of this and more.

    It it had been possible to read it in the sunlight I might have bit though.

    P.S. Did you get folders?

    ReplyReply

  21. Jane
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 11:30:47

    @DS There is a document transfer but it is app dependent as far as I can see.

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  22. Jane
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 11:34:00

    @Chicklet I think it would be great for textbooks. The screen is beautiful and big and it is easy to take notes either using the on screen keyboard or a bluetooth one.

    ReplyReply

  23. AmyW
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 11:38:48

    You and me both @Suzanna Medeiros! Considering I preordered a kobo reader yesterday, I was 99.9% certain I had made sure I could put files from other sources on it but I had to go double check just now.

    ReplyReply

  24. El
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 12:12:38

    Good to hear the Sony’s reason for being off the list is one I don’t care about–was worried there for a minute. I’m leaning toward a Sony Pocket eReader. By the time I can actually buy it, though, the market will probably have changed considerably–with the Kobo, it already has. Didn’t know about that one.

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  25. Julia Rachel Barrett
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 12:41:54

    Great review. Thanks. I was interested because of the many apps, but my husband and I were just discussing the ebook store and wondering how it would compare to the many books he has access to via his Kindle – which he loves. You answered that question!

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  26. Beau
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 14:41:36

    My understanding of ibooks was that they were only readable on the ipad and not the iphone/ipod. Has that changed?

    ReplyReply

  27. Eva_baby
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 15:18:32

    Nice review. It pretty much verified all that I been reading around the web in the past few days.

    I might like one because I am a tech head. But I never buy 1st generation anything and there is still the whole flash incompatibility with some websites.

    What’s the battery life like, though?

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  28. Mike Cane
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 15:23:05

    I will defy your advice and buy it as my only eBook reading device anyway. So there.

    Otherwise, excellent writeup and I particularly loved this bit:

    >>>The bookshelf is kind of hideous

    HAHAHAHAHA. Bingo!

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  29. Jane
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 16:06:43

    @Teddypig: I looked at goodreader today and I would want something that allows annotations. The iAnnotate is nice but it currently does not allow syncing of PDFs so nothing is perfect yet.

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  30. Jane
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 16:07:09

    @Beau: No, iBooks is only available via the iPad. Can’t even browse/buy books via iTunes.

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  31. Jane
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 16:08:01

    @Eva_baby: Battery life is very good. I was able to use it nearly non stop for close to 10 hours before I got a low battery warning. I should add that it takes a long time to recharge as well. Definitely something that should be plugged in overnight.

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  32. Janet P.
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 16:09:03

    Thank you so much for your review. I have been interested in the iPad as a portable internet device — not so much an eReader.

    I agree with your opinion of the Sony Pocket. As a stick in your purse on the go type of eReader it is fab – especially at the new price. My High School age son carries his with him everywhere.

    I’ll probably own an iPAD eventually it is just hard for me to justify the price right now. We have a Plastic Logic Que scheduled for delivery this summer, 2 Kindles and the Sony Pocket… not to mention everybody in the family already owning laptops and iPhones and/or iTouches.

    Wow I love technology. Keep coming up with better and better I say. I have a feeling Amazon is planning good things for the future of Kindle.

    ReplyReply

  33. iPad Links: Monday, April 4, 2010 « Mike Cane's iPad Test
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 16:47:48

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    Apr 04, 2010 @ 16:50:48

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  35. Elaine
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 17:21:06

    A partial solution is to use the Kindle App for the ipad. The ipad app was released Friday. This lets you move between platforms. I don’t know if the apps support all of the formats that Kindle does, and I know that it is more difficult to put non-Amazon purchased content on the app than it is on a true Kindle. However, I do know it can be done — at least with Kindle for PC.

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  36. readerdiane
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 17:25:15

    I thought that there was going to be Kindle for the Ipad.

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  37. Ridley
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 18:31:52

    I know it’s graceless of me, but I was really hoping the iPad would suck.

    Knowing it’s a poor ereader is a decent consolation prize.

    I’ll grow up someday. Maybe.

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  38. MariaESchneider
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 18:54:09

    Really great review, especially from the e-reader perspective. Also greatly appreciated the comments on what is available in the actual iBookstore/pricing.

    Maria

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  39. MariaESchneider
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 18:54:50

    @readerdiane: There is a Kindle app for the iPad available. I saw the notice on the Amazon forums.

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  40. MariaESchneider
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 18:56:58

    Maybe you can get the Entourage Edge and review it next? I’ve been wondering about how well it works, but it’s priced way up there…

    :>)

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  41. Ann Bruce
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 19:14:34

    Jane, how’s the virtual keyboard for extended use? Still don’t have mine since it’s not out yet in Canada. :(

    ReplyReply

  42. Lynn
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 20:20:09

    Thanks Jane. Very nice review. I thought about buying one right out of the gate and I’m glad I waited. Too bad about the iBook store. It has potential though.

    I have a netbook and don’t like it as a ereader due to the glare on the display in the sunlight and it’s weight. My Nook is perfect size and weight, but sadly it lacks a lot of things I do want.

    I’m still on the lookout for my perfect ereader. It HAS to read pdb, epub, html, pdf, doc, rtf, audiobooks, bmp, jpg, tif,gif, and any other formats they want to toss at me would be fine. Wireless access a must for browser and email. I would also like to be able to take notes and mark a book as read and add comments. Just haven’t found if it exists or not…and I’ve looked. Hard. If someone knows of one, let me know please.

    I’d gladly give up my Nook for my dream machine and pay some big bucks for it.

    Thanks again for the review.

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  43. XandraG
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 20:40:33

    Ten other hours with the iPad.

    ReplyReply

  44. Ridley
    Apr 04, 2010 @ 21:50:45

    @XandraG:
    That didn’t take long.

    ReplyReply

  45. HeatherK
    Apr 05, 2010 @ 06:33:28

    Ok, having read this, I want the iPad even more than I already did. However, I still have to wait until next year. I’d prefer a second gen version, to be honest about it, to see if they get any of the kinks worked out. Plus, just can’t afford the thing right now.

    I’m not looking at it as an ebook reader, since I already have my PRS-505, which I adore, and I sometimes use the Kindle, B&N, and Kobo apps on my iPod Touch. I’m looking at it as more of a portable word processor/digital notebook, since I refuse to write on a Windows device anymore. Been there, done that, and I’ve been burned by Windows way too many times to ever go there again.

    The screen size on this baby is a huge plus as my eyes aren’t getting any better. Sucks about not being able to see it outside, but then again, I’m not really outside all that much so it shouldn’t be too much of an issue. I’ve also go digital copies of a few movies (they came free on the DVDs) that I’d love to use this to watch. I haven’t tried them on my Touch yet, primarily because of the screen size. The five font sizes in the books is another winner, IMO, because the three sizes on my Sony just aren’t enough sometimes-’I really wish my 505 had more font sizes to pick from.

    I’ll also be interested to see how well some of the games play on the iPad as well as what other Apps are available for it. My primary needs for it would be email, web surfing, writing, gaming, and writing related stuff (note taking, etc) in no particular order.

    My electronic devices vie for space against my ever growing population of medications in my purse. I LOVE my iPod Touch, so I’m pretty sure I’ll end up loving the iPad as well, whenever I do manage to get one. Is it next year yet? :p

    ReplyReply

  46. 10 hours with the iPad: Why the iPad is not a Kindle killer | The Digital Reader
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  47. Angel
    Apr 05, 2010 @ 07:04:42

    I’m typing this on my iPad. I bought the iPad on Saturday and after using it on a 5.5 flight to Vegas, text messaged a friend and sold her my Kindle. I love my Kindle but it’s no point in having both. I like that I can use the iPad to read at night and the weight is not a big deal since I just prop it on my lap in its case. I have all my Kindle books available through the Kindle app which will also sync with my iPod touch. It’s weird that the Kindle app wasn’t really mentioned in this review.

    Someone mentioned earlier that the iPad was a poor ereader. I disagree wholeheartedly.

    ReplyReply

  48. Jane
    Apr 05, 2010 @ 07:13:38

    @angel I want to do a separate post on the Kindle, watt pad, and kobo books app. I mention that at the very end of the review. I hope to have that done by tomorrow.

    ReplyReply

  49. Carolyn Jewel
    Apr 05, 2010 @ 08:08:14

    Thanks for the great review. I enjoyed your tweets yesterday, too. I don’t know yet if I’ll get one. Probably not, but it depends on how easy it would be to write and edit on it.

    ReplyReply

  50. Andrys Basten
    Apr 05, 2010 @ 08:35:39

    Enjoyed your review and photos. Since a big interest of yours is annotations for the books you’re reading and since you’ll be reviewing the Kindle and the kobobook readers, here is something most people don’t know about the Kindle annotations feature.

    With the Kindle you get a private, pass-word protected webpage showing your annotations for each book and there is a way to show all annotations for a book on one scrolling page.

    See Web Kindle Notes and the sample screen of this from one of my Kindle books with only a few annotations.

    – Andrys

    ReplyReply

  51. Caro
    Apr 05, 2010 @ 09:26:04

    Thanks for the review on the iPad, and especially the comments on it as an eReader. After having a chance to play with one on Saturday, I’m definitely in the “buy” camp, though not primarily for eBook reading. I cart my MacBook to work nearly every day to get work done at lunch; the iPad will be lighter and easier to carry, plus allow me to do web surfing and email, while minimizing wear and tear on the laptop. That’s it’s primary appeal to me, but I had been looking at it as my first eReader. From your reviews and a few others, it looks like I will likely consider another device for that function.

    ReplyReply

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    Apr 05, 2010 @ 09:26:48

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  53. LR
    Apr 05, 2010 @ 12:08:37

    I can’t take any “writing” seriously that uses the phrase “The battery life is hella good.”

    Are you a fucking moron?

    ReplyReply

  54. Kate Pearce
    Apr 05, 2010 @ 14:38:52

    There is a really good case you can buy with the ipad which when open, allows you to bend the top cover backward to form a little wedge support which makes it easier to type and read if you’re sitting, in bed, or at a desk. You can also stand it up using the same case.
    I too found the cataloging of the ibook store rather lacking, but comparing the look of the pages on the ipad to the kindle side by side was very interesting-the ibook flick over and back. the double page spread, clarity of the print and the size of the page won me over completely.

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  55. Bonnie
    Apr 05, 2010 @ 16:28:52

    @LR:

    Nice.

    Who pissed in your cornflakes this morning? Jesus.

    ReplyReply

  56. mykoffee
    Apr 05, 2010 @ 17:42:54

    Thank you very much for such an informative review! It pretty much summed up what I’ve been thinking, for an ereader I’ll stick to my nook, but perhaps for other things the ipad would be pretty cool. OMG, look at those fingerprints though! That might drive me bananas.

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  57. Jane
    Apr 06, 2010 @ 01:58:14

    @mykoffee: Yes, the fingerprints currently disgust me! I keep trying to clean it but the fingerprints are back within minutes.

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  58. Jane
    Apr 06, 2010 @ 01:59:01

    @LR: I wouldn’t say I’m a fucking moron but I’m certain that the phrase “hella good” could be viewed as too colloquial for some.

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  59. Jane
    Apr 06, 2010 @ 01:59:35

    @Kate Pearce: I have that case. It’s the Apple branded case and I love it. I don’t think you want the iPad without a case that can also serve as a stand.

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  60. Jane
    Apr 06, 2010 @ 01:59:49

    @Andrys Basten: That is really cool. I had no idea.

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  61. Jane
    Apr 06, 2010 @ 02:01:32

    @Carolyn Jewel: I worked with the iPad tonight with the keyboard attached (via bluetooth) and it types beautifully. I was waiting for my daughter over at the local college and someone commented that they had never seen a computer like mine before and I told her it was the iPad with the keyboard and she was so fascinated. I think that for basic word processing documents, it could easily replace a netbook. The one thing I perceive it needs is a better, more portable bluetooth keyboard or at least a decent carrier for the apple one.

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  62. DS
    Apr 06, 2010 @ 05:59:50

    I’m starting to become fascinated by the little book-like but useless things software designers are putting in to make book readers feel comfortable.

    It reminds me of the work done by the archaeologist, Flinders Petrie on the development and dating of clay pots. At first there were handles on the pots and with time they devolved into a mere decoration on the pot. The picture showing the representation of two pages with the design of a cover edge, a gutter and edges of the text block is fascinating me.

    Future social historians take note.

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  63. iPad tips: Enjoy PDFs, ePubs other files without iTunes hassles—thanks to transfer tricks and cool e-book apps | TeleRead: Bring the E-Books Home
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  66. Lynn
    Apr 25, 2010 @ 15:33:14

    iPads are hot, but I just want a ereader about the size of a paperback, and the iPad is too big for now. I’ve had my Nook for a few months and think it’s great. I didn’t buy the iPad since I already have a netbook.

    I received my Alex ereader by Spring Design on Friday and have been tormenting it as much as possible. It is around the size of my Nook, but a tad skinnier and a tad longer. It’s also a little thinner and lighter. But it feels a little top heavy when holding it with one or two hands.

    The text display is just as nice as the Nook and easy on the eyes when reading. The dual screen is great. Touchpad is nicely responsive. The browser is good. The YouTube beta app is choppy. I suspect with 3G, it would be much better. The page turn buttons work fine and are nicely placed. Quick too.

    I think with some tweaks it will be a great ereader when 3G and more droid apps are available later this summer.

    One major irritant was the alpha order. It seemed to place all b’s in front of a’s. Oh well. And mine didn’t have a word find.

    I do love all gadgets shiny and new, but IMO, Alex is not worth the $400.00 price Spring Design has placed on it. It really has great potential to be a great ereader, but not there yet. In a few months I might be more pleased. Spring Design, like so many other companies, keep tossing out inadequate products to magpies like me who snarf them up. Just can’t help myself.

    I’m sticking with my Nook for now.

    IF Apple has a mini-iPad in the works, I might try it.

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  67. Tim
    May 21, 2010 @ 11:21:37

    @Lynn: “IF Apple has a mini-iPad in the works, I might try it.”

    They do. It’s called the Touch.

    ReplyReply

  68. Donald Nguyen
    May 31, 2010 @ 23:54:26

    @Shannon Stacey The Kobo app links the Kobo Store to the Kobo but you may also use Adobe Digital Editions (in conjunction with the Kobo app) to transfer eBooks purchased from Sony Reader Store, etc. or borrowed from the public library to the Kobo.

    ReplyReply

  69. Hassan Syed
    Jun 12, 2010 @ 08:54:35

    Quite an apt review. Personally i do think it is a kindle killer. We must bear in mind that “books” come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, specifically, they may contain more than just RTF text. For example course texts and technical content.
    IMO they have pretty much much nailed the hardware side of things. What I mean by this is that this is indeed the “third” category of a mobile computing platform. This device is indeed capable of replacing the paper notepad, a word processor and the Traditional print media; however at the moment us iPad owners are waiting on the “software innovation” to happen.

    To give a taste of what is to come, I suggest they look at reviews of the applications goodreader, popplet, ithought HD,,omnigraffle,iannotate and papers. Personally I want an application that combines the features of all the Applications listed above (with the exception of omnigraffle) so that I can improve my effectiveness as a researcher.

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  70. mike
    Jul 26, 2010 @ 17:38:34

    Nice review! Check mine at the below link..

    Gear Lust (part one) iPad -first impressions

    http://mousejockey.wordpress.com/2010/07/26/hello-world/

    Like so many other Apple users I'm enamored with each deliciously-designed product that they release. But I understand what they are doing to us – they are changing the way we think, compute, consume and buy. As a futurist and early-adopter of most technology I'm ok with these changes. But Apple seems to be single-handedly launching us into new markets long before the public knows what to do with them. On one hand it's the entrepreneur's dream to have a new wild-west to conquer. But as consumers we are easily tricked into putting money back into Apple, AT&T and so many other companies' products to feel like we are on the cutting edge of technology in this brave new age of computing. My first impressions of the iPad are exactly these thoughts. It's not a matter of is it cool (it totally is) or do I want one (couldn't wait.) It does everything I wanted and more. It's got a few limitations I find frustrating. But once I got my hands on it I was drinking Apple's kool aid once again and didn't put it down for about 14 hours. Below is a brief review of the product and some initial impressions of the philosophy behind the technology, some questions about productivity and some excitement about the possibilities.

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  71. Elaine Jo anagnostopoulos
    Aug 09, 2010 @ 19:49:30

    Being in my 66h. Yr,a grandma of. 9,,,,I love my Ipad given to me
    By my yngst.son 29.. Previoulsy tech. Challanged was I …am really
    Learning alot…love Ibook …we have 55 books in the faux bookshelf,
    It’s like built-in bookshelves in the 60′s,,email is alot of fun..and I do
    Find anything I have a question about on Safari (Google)..impressive!
    No complaints..oh, and the endless games, addicting! god bless….

    ReplyReply

  72. Rian R.
    Aug 29, 2010 @ 10:15:58

    Okay, read the article. Good comments Jane and I initially thought the same as you did, that the Ipad would be a novelty item compared to the Kindle. But since getting one and using it for several months, I have found that I love it. I thought it would weigh more but it is incredibly lighter than I thought. I also thought I would not need it daily, but I find that I use it more than my laptop. Mainly for it portability and with the amount of apps, it makes my daily work life easier. Just the fact that I have access to my books, videos, music, and office documents makes the Ipad worth it. Oh, I have yet to pull the kindle out of the drawer, where it has been since May 2010. So my Ipad did in fact kill my kindle.

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  73. Angel
    Sep 13, 2010 @ 11:21:33

    I responded to this post in April after I bought my iPad and declared it a Kindle killer. I sold my Kindle to a friend. Well, on Friday, I took delivery of another Kindle.

    After using the iPad for five plus months, I decided that I liked reading on the Kindle better. I really like the distraction free aspect of the Kindle and I could never really get comfortable in bed (where I do the majority of my reading) with the iPad.

    So now I own the iPad and the Kindle again. I thought it would only be fair to come back and revise my opinion.

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  74. Jane
    Sep 13, 2010 @ 11:31:39

    @Angel Thanks for coming back and giving us an update.

    ReplyReply

  75. Kell Brigan
    Sep 22, 2010 @ 19:16:02

    Sorry, but there’s no way I’m taking advice from anyone who thinks Jamie Oliver isn’t a moronic bigot.

    ReplyReply

  76. Mark Wall
    Sep 23, 2010 @ 10:50:28

    The Kindle App solves all these problems except direct sunlight. Living in Canada, there is only about four months of the year when you might be reading outside in the sun. In the winter the sun goes down early so a lit screen is best for cost of the year.

    ReplyReply

  77. Denise
    Oct 06, 2010 @ 19:05:07

    I received a Sony Reader for my birthday 2 years ago. I thought it was the greatest thing since sliced bread until I read my first book on the iPad I love the format of the books and how the pages actually seem to turn as oppose to blinking,which kind of hurts my head! Here’s my question. How can I get my Sony Bookstore Epub formatted books from my Mac hard drive to my iPad???? I have about 30 books yet to read that I’ve purchased from the Sony Reader Library and I don’t want to go back to my Sony Reader to read them. Help!!!

    ReplyReply

  78. Jane
    Oct 06, 2010 @ 19:24:55

    @Denise: Currently you cannot read your Sony books on the iPad although there is some rumor that Sony may build an app for the iPad.

    if you can crack the DRM of your ebooks, you can read the Sony books using iBooks or Stanza on the iPad.

    ReplyReply

  79. takayo
    Dec 16, 2010 @ 03:14:39

    I returned it shortly thereafter. The biggest annoyance: an imperfect bluetooth connection and oddly responsive keyboard

    ReplyReply

  80. scandalous
    Dec 17, 2010 @ 00:30:32

    just purchased my ipad today really need some information on textbooks can i download any school textbooks on the ipad really wanted an e reader for textbooks purposes but my husband said that i should get it to do more because i will not need it for just textbooks forever.

    ReplyReply

  81. Sharan Demendonca
    May 05, 2011 @ 11:02:02

    Great to be visiting, it has been months a newlyweds of. Well an additional report that could work out just fine. I necessity something prefer that something I am working on, and mine has the same topic as yours. I am relieved which I seen it, stellar give.

    ReplyReply

  82. hani
    Feb 06, 2012 @ 08:03:50

    I just got an ipad i can say that it has brought me back the reading world ,as i do all my reading in this revolutionary device

    ReplyReply

  83. Tommy b
    Feb 19, 2012 @ 04:56:27

    Ipad great for reading. I buy books from kindle store and iBooks. I have kindle app on both iPhone and iPad and if I read a few chapters on the iPhone and then read same book on the ipAd it knows where I got up to. It’s a great combination. Only criticism that is valid from article is bright sunlight is a slight issue.

    New iBooks 2 author allows you to create amazing interactive textbooks (with video audio and interactive graphics embedded in the book) it is free as easy as using Microsoft word to write a letter. So expect an explosion of textbooks created for this to become available because teachers worldwide will be publishing textbooks on the iBooks store.

    ReplyReply

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