I've read a number of complaints, and the web is already abuzz with naysayers shoveling their reasons for why the iPad is a bad thing. Here's what I have to say to them.
[Advisory: The following is mean. Very mean. If you get your feelers hurt easily, do not read.]
1. Closed App, 3rd Party Access
Apple is screening the Apps that they wants sold to their consumers? They are making sure I don't get buggy rip-offs flush with viruses? Apple is actually making sure that extraneous means of communicating off-the-grid are not being circulated on their devices protecting the revenue of their partners and allies? Oh no, say it isn't so! How dare they!
2. Too many Adapters
It would have been better if the thing was riddled with every port under the sun? That just opens people up to making yet more 3rd party devices, sort of defeating complaint #1 in the hardware end of the pool. Not everyone needs an SD card slot, or USB port on their tablet. Therefore, it doesn't need to be included as a built in port. Funny, the only ports the iPad has... are those needed by every user of the device... no more, no less. Like someone really thought about this issue.
3. It's not Widescreen
So what? That's why I have a TV, an iMac, or a laptop. If I'm watching video on the go, that's not really my concern. This wasn't meant to replace a home entertainment setup by any means. People actually thought this was going to be a 16:9 screen setup? With a tiny 1GHZ processor? It has nearly 30FPS for $500, I'll take 4:3 and smile about it.
4. No HDMI out
This complaint is simply proof that people are stupid. I mean really. Really? If I'm Apple, there's no way I'm going to put something into the iPad that wouldn't be useful to every single user. Such raises the price point losing more buyers than gained. This complaint came from the same mook that says the device has too many adapters.
Like no third party manufacturer isn't dreaming up a home theater docking device with HDMI out? Let em'! For the people who actually want it.
5. Touch Keyboard
People complained this was the same big ol' clunky on-screen keyboard every other device has. In this, they are absolutely correct, until you turn it around from landscape to portrait. Then it shrinks up nicely at the bottom of the screen. A professional reviewer missed this little fact.
6. No Flash
Yet more proof people are stupid. Claiming the iPad sucks because it doesn't have Flash Support is pretty standard. It's the same logic that allows people to blame the Police for writing people tickets. Cops don't make the laws of the land anymore than Apple writes the software for Flash. If people are mad there is no Flash Video support, they need to hold Adobe responsible. (It's their baby, let them teach it new tricks.)
(I'll refrain from mentioning the security issues with Flash at this time. Oops!)
When Steve held it up, the icon showed that it knew it needed Flash support for a given item on the webpage. This means the device knows what Flash is. One could then assume Adobe was waiting to develop this sort of support until the SDK was released.
7. Doesn't Support T-Mobile 3G
I use AT&T. I can get a cheap data plan. Nyah-Nyah-Na-Na-Na-Nyah!! While I don't generally delight in laughing at the misfortune of others, this is one of those times where I feel it is appropriate. This is like being mad because you can't get a tree that'll grow pink poke-a-dotted oranges.
8. No Multitasking
My iPod accepts pushed data from various apps (Facebook, Mail, etc), plays music, and allows me to surf the web/play games at the same time. However, because the iPad is larger, more powerful, and operating on a hybrid OS it somehow... can't? Oh, that's right... Apple would put out a more powerful device that can do less in situations critical to the consumer where they might be competing with themselves? Riiigghhtt...
9. Big ugly Bezel
Uh, what? Hello!? You need SOMEWHERE TO PUT YOUR THUMBS WHILE YOU ARE USING THE DEVICE! I HAVE BIG THUMBS! Not everyone is a geeky 99 lb. tech reviewer. It's a multi-touch device. For people who don't understand English, that means it reacts to your fingers. For those of us who aren't inbred mutants with suckers on our fingers, it means our thumbs will likely rest on the front of the device. They'll need somewhere to go where they won't trip off the sensors.
10. No Cameras
Good! This would have raised the price point for a feature most people would have no real use for. See complaint #4. Anything that discourages people from video conferencing in public places, such as my coffee shop, is on my high on my list of 'good'. Then there's the thought of turning to look at someone in traffic and seeing them talking to their crotch... while it was glowing. Yep... people using Skype while driving. People are already stupid enough to text and drive, why not?
11. The name iPad
Yep, the name is extremely silly. Just like every other device Apple sells making them the #1 supplier (by revenue) of mobile devices. I'm sure Apple is laughing too... all the way to the bank.
12. All the things people should grouse about
It's probably difficult to replace the battery on this thing. Lots of people take long trips where this thing would be really handy to have, and in particular, the ability to swap batteries. That's a standard complaint on the newer Apple Laptops too. I mean, no one is going to make money by developing a 3rd party car/airplane adapter right? Huh-huh-hu-huh-huh...
Also, it doesn't make coffee (not even hot chocolate) or remotely destroy idiotic tech reviewers.
Finally, it doesn't have a 3.5 Floppy Drive. How am I going to load up King's Quest II or Sentinel Worlds 1? I mean seriously Apple? What the hell were you thinking?
13. All Crankiness Aside
The iPad isn't for everyone. For people who already have a Laptop or Netbook they're happy with, there isn't much of a point to this device. If you have an eReader and an iPod touch already, there seems to be no point. Yes, there are lots of people who DO NOT need this device and for which it would serve no ready purpose.
Apple makes a decent living only being like 8% of the market share when it comes to computers alone, and they have a specific target audience. The make or break for me, and many people I imagine, is the relative success of the iBook store, its relative access to the market, and the pricing associated with it. If it turns out to be an awesome eBook reader and lets me check my email without reaching for a second device, I'll be happy. More than anything it is the storage that really intrigued me. It has twice the maximum storage the other device I'd been looking at had.
There are lots of reasons to avoid the purchase of an iPad.
I'm with my uncle Mike though, it's thin, shiny, and I must have one.