29 July 2011

What's the use of an iPad?

John Naughton quotes Andrew Orlowski's review of the HP's Touchpad:
'After just one year, the iPad is making more revenue than Apple's 30-year-old personal computer division. It's almost bringing in as much as Dell brings in from PCs. This is a huge business, already. And nobody can quite say what their iPad is good for. If ever a computer was a means to an end, then the iPad is it – rather than doing anything uniquely iPad-ish, it takes lots of "ends" a laptop (or Kindle, or smartphone) gets you to, and just gets you there slightly more conveniently. PCs are going to be around a long time; the iPad will be right there alongside them.'
Reminds me of Clayton Christensen's assessment in The Innovator's Dilemma of Apple's early abandonment of the Newton:
'...when they initially emerge, neither manufacturers nor customers know exactly how or why the products will be used...Building such markets entails a process of mutual discovery by customers and manufacturers - and this simply takes time.' (p.135)
Times have certainly changed.

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