Steve Jobs today unveiled the all new iPad tablet which, to quote him, is a "mobile video-watching, book-reading, game-playing, photo-perusing, music-listening, web-surfing, and email-emailing device."

Perhaps the biggest surprise is that its base price starts at $499, which is much lower than the ~$1000 price point industry watchers predicted. At this price it is likely to give dedicated e-readers such as the Kindle and Nook serious competition, and also significantly impact the market for smaller computers known as netbooks.

You will find a thorough description of the new device, as described by Jobs himself here

And for more about the likely pricing and availability of e-books on the iPad click here

Lastly two particularly salient paragraphs lifted from Rik Myslewski's article in

"And speaking of Amazon's Kindle, Apple clearly is in a gauntlet-throwing mood when it comes to ebooks. But putting aside the epaper-versus-backlit display debate, it's difficult to compare the iPad and the Kindle. The Kindle, for example, can download books from (sorta) anywhere at anytime over Sprint's wireless Whispernet service. To accomplish the same degree of convenience, an iPad owner will not only have to pony up the extra $130 for 3G connectivity, but also pay AT&T $14.99 for 250MB a month or $29.99 for an unlimited data plan.

That said, however, the Kindle is merely a monochrome reader for ebooks (and enewspapers and emagazines and blogs), while the colorful, oleophobic, LED-backlit, 1024-by-768 iPad includes a range of entertainment, creative, and productivity software, plus access to those aforementioned 140,000 iPhone apps. If you're already an iPhone or iPod touch owner, by the way, the iPad will also run all the apps you've purchased for those two handhelds. Another bonus: when docked, the iPad can double as a full-color digital photo frame."

I was a bit underwhelmed at the product launch, as I guess I was expecting something more groundbreaking. It's just a big iPod Touch! I haven't decided whether or not it's something in which I'll invest. I'll have to see one in person first. I'm thinking maybe I'll be ready to purchase one when the second generation is released. I was impressed with the low price on the entry-level device, as well as the low-priced, month-to-month data plans. If I got one, I'd want the G3-enabled device for sure.
# Posted By PDXReader | 1/29/10 10:34 AM
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