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Monday, June 21, 2010

Life with an Apple iPad – Day 1

I have been using an iPad 16GB WiFi/3G since Thursday – doing the math on my fingers that is 5 days. To put this in real world terms, that is the amount of time for the Chia Homer on my desk to grow almost 2 inches. I have made some strides figuring out how to use the iPad for work, but I find myself going down rabbit holes as I download different apps. Take note, I turned to the dark side, Windows PC’s, about 15 years ago and since then the only two Apple items that I used are 2 iPods and the Safari browser for Windows. If I was a Mac user I might be more familiar with the Apple products and figuring everything else might be easier.

Day 1 – Thursday Night
I unpack the iPad in 30 seconds – packaging is good, but not the same coolness of the first generation iPod. BTW – I still use the first generation iPod. Turned it on and had to hook up to PC and sync with iTunes before I could use. This would have been annoying if I was not already a iPod and iTunes user. The registration and setup took under 5 minutes. I then picked some podcasts, music, TV shows, and photos to sync to iPad and 10 minutes later was ready to start playing. I could not sync a TV show from my Tivo – bummer, but I will get back to this.

Start by hitting the video icon and play an episode of Bones. I am blown away by the video quality and sound through the speakers. Move on to the iPod button and start up a Podcast. While Podcast is playing I hit the home button and the Podcast stops. I had heard about this issue, but don’t fret, later this year Apple says there will be an update that allows Multitasking.

I then hit the Mail button and try to setup email with my Gmail account and get an error. Operator error on my part, I have not setup wifi. I put in the network key and the wifi is connected in under a minute. I go back to the email and I am viewing my Gmail in less than a minute. I am a little disappointed at how limited the features are in the built in email app, so in the future I will have to look through the app store to find something better.

Setup iBooks and am greeted with a free copy of Winnie the Pooh. I hate Winnie the Pooh, but I move on. Grab a sample of the Idiots Guide to Getting Things Done to see how the books look. Then I run across the iPad User Guide, which is Free. I recommend grabbing this as a reference, but it does not help me with my Tivo show issue. Get iBooks by Apple Inc.

With mail setup and the manual at my finger tips, I spend the next few hours surfing the Internet on the iPad for info on apps and then going to app store and setting up the apps:

1. Evernote – I have this App on my Blackberry Storm and Laptop. It is great for making To-Do lists and they sync through the Internet so you can see the latest list on each device. The only problem I have with the iPad version is that I can change the font to cross out to show I have finished an item on a list. Get Evernote Now

2. USA Today – I only read this paper when I get it free at a Hotel on the road, but I download app and I am surprised at the quality of the app. App has same for sections as paper and one you get used to the quirky navigation find it easy to use and have used it every day since. Get USA TODAY Now.

3. ABC Player – want to see how streaming video looks, so I download this App, but I am disappointed at the shows available – the prime season is over. I watch an episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live and once again I am impressed by video quality and sound through speakers. Get ABC Player Now

It is now 11PM and time for me to shut down for the day. What I got out of my intro to the iPad:
1. It is easy to use and addictive.
2. Having to move files through iTunes is cumbersome
3. Already looking forward to multitasking
4. From a work standpoint I can view my to-do lists through Evernote and send email with my Gmail account
5. Video quality is great and audio quality of onboard speaker is surprisingly clear.
6. My thumbs are already sore from typing - need to get keyboard, but not sure about doc because who wants to site at a desk...

I will post Day 2 soon. First I have to migrate this blog since Blogger stopped supporting FTP.

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