After 7 months of using Apple’s most significant device since the iPhone, the Apple iPad, I can attest without a doubt that it has really set a new standard in mobile productivity and entertainment. It’s a true-blue game changer, which just recently plunged the sales of netbooks and probably inspired the “birth” of the Samsung Galaxy Tab.
The iPad comes in Wifi and Wifi+3G versions. The Wifi+3G version requires an iPad SIM, which Globe Telecom and Smart currently offer here in the Philippines. The iPad Wifi is currently officially available at Power Mac Center.
Today, allow me to give you my extensive review of the Apple Ipad I got a few months back. I will delve into its external and internal core factors, which brought it to the spotlight as one of the world’s bestselling device in history. I’m just so proud that I’m one of the few who owns one.
With big screen comes great future.
Dubbed as a “gargantuan ipod touch” and works almost exactly the same way, this wonderful device truly gives better use and enjoyment to its end-user. Thanks to its 9.7 inch LED-backlit glossy widescreen Multi-touch display with IPS technology. Its 1024-by-768-pixel display is similar to the screens found on current iMacs.
The generous screen size of the iPad is housed in a large bezel aluminium back casing with a thumb-sized piano-black apple logo. Its overall look is reminiscent of all the iPhone versions from 2G to 3Gs but this time it’s bigger. The iPad’s back casing’s texture is similar with the iPhone 2G; and its curved and rounded corners are similar with iPhone 3G and 3Gs models.
Apple generously included physical buttons in this device although not flamboyantly displayed. The only button that appears so evidently is the Home button similar to all lines of Apple devices with iPhone operating systems. The Sleep/Wake/Power button sits on the upper right edge of the devices. Slide down to the side of the device and there you will find 2 more physical buttons – the orientation lock and the volume up/down rocker switches. The headphone jack is placed on the upper left edge of the device and beside it lies a small internal microphone. The usual dock connector port can be seen at the bottom part of the device and the laser beam can be seen nowhere.
iPhone applications may be installed and used, but some would mind the distorted graphics plus the annoying popup of the iPhone keyboard in all its pixelated glory. It is such a good thing that Apple encouraged application developers to port iPhone applications to become compatible with the iPad.
There are currently thousands of Apple iPad compatible apps available via Appstore. Games like Plants versus Zombies, Diner Dash, Angry Birds, Read Racing HD, Rage HD and Infinity Blade are readily available for purchase at an average cost of $4.99 per application. Meanwhile, productivity applications like Apple’s iWork (Pages, Keynote, Numbers), Penultimate, Goodreader and Bento Box are also available at an average cost of $3.00 per application.
You may also download free applications via AppStore like iBooks, Jumbo Calculator, Kindle, GodFinger, etc.
To Jailbreak, or not to Jailbreak
The iPad’s OS, iOS 3.2, is designed with restrictions that prevent from running applications obtained from sources other than Apple’s own iTunes App Store. This is one way for Apple to control its application distribution and properly reward the developers who worked hard in creating their applications.
There are however some cool application that were rejected by Apple for some reasons. Jailbreaking allows you to download and install these applications. Such process allows you to “read” and “write” to the iPad’s operating system’s partition, thereby freeing your iPhone from the “jail” that Apple had set up.
There is a debate however in the legality of jailbreaking the iPad/iPhone. According to Docket No. RM 2008-8 of US Copyright Library of Congress, Apple Inc. (“Apple”) provides the following responses to the questions submitted by the Copyright Office on June 23, 2009 relating to proposed exemptions 5A and 11A (Class #1) concerning “jailbreaking” of smart phones.
Jailbreaking does violate a license agreement between Apple and the purchaser of an iPhone. All purchasers of iPhones must accept the terms and conditions of the iPhone Software License Agreement (“IPSLA”) at the time of purchase of the iPhone (and any later updates of the software). The IPSLA governs use of the software resident on or included with the iPhone and contains a number of conditions and restrictions governing such use. There have been four major versions of the IPSLA: ver. 1.0, ver. 1.1.1, ver. 2.0, and ver. 3.0. Copies of each of theseversions of the IPSLA are attached to this response as Attachments A-1 through A-4. Section 2(c) of all versions of the IPSLA provides that the licensee may not “modify, or create derivative works of the iPhone Software” and that any “attempt to do so is a violation of the rights of Apple and its licensors of the iPhone Software.
There are several Apple iPad accessories available via Apple Store and some retailers nationwide like VGA connectivity cable, USB and Card reader and portfolio case. I bought the VGA connectivity cable and I must say that it worked flawlessly with some applications like Keynote and i-Clickr.
If you own a jailbroken iPad, the application called “Display Out” can mirror the iPad screen on a external display. It supports the official VGA connectivity cable, detects orientation and connectivity, has adjustable refresh rate and supports game and video content. This is available via Cydia for $1.99.
The iPad is totally not an oversized iPod Touch as some would call it. It’s a tablet with an unmatched quality and unequaled performance. Yes, the iPad has the same operating system with its kins – the iPhone and iPod Touch, but is different in how it would please you. With it, you can play better and easier, work in more details, and get satisfied with the thought that such an amazing device is in the palm of your hands, helping you with all the things you need with a flick of a finger.
Giancarlo Viterbo is a Filipino Technology Journalist, blogger and Editor of gadgetpilipinas.net, He is also a Geek, Dad and a Husband. He knows a lot about washing the dishes, doing some errands and following instructions from his boss on his day job. Follow him on twitter: @gianviterbo and @gadgetpilipinas.