iPad: What Is It and How Would I Use It? Anyone?

This might be the most difficult post I have ever written. I am literally forcing myself to write these words. The reason I am finding it so difficult about the iPad is two fold. For starters, I do not know my own opinion yet. On the one hand, there is no denying it is a beautiful product like only Apple knows how to make. On the other hand, did they really reinvent the wheel here? Does it include anything particularly exciting on the technology side of things? I think not. I am sorry to be the millionth person to say this, but with the addition of a faster processor and some new software capabilities, the iPad is a giant iPod. But is that really so bad? You starting to get why this is a challenging topic for me?

 

My iPod Touch Apps

Just thought I would share a rundown of the current apps installed on my iPod Touch. The list is always changing as new apps come out that are more useful.

Easier than a PC

Easier than a PC

  • EasyWriter: Great app that provides a landscape keyboard to type on. I find it much easier to type in landscape mode. After you type the text, you can click on the Mail icon and export the text to an email. Very useful app. I give it a 4/5 just because it is not embedded in the mail client, that would be amazing.
  • Facebook: Very useful app that, after comparing it to the iPhone Facebook website, is a lot more user friendly. I was a little disappointed you could not edit your profile, but all in all, a great app. I give it a 4/5 because it is pretty much read-only.
  • Fring: No question Fring is one of my all time favorites. You can Skype, AIM, MSN, GTalk,Twitter, Yahoo, and ICQ from your iPhone and iPod. Very user friendly interface and a great app. Nothing beats being able to call someone from your iPod via Skype. However, it also gets a 4/5 because of the lack of Facebook chat and landscape keyboard. That would make it the perfect app.
  • So Close to Perfection

    So Close to Perfection

  • Google Earth: Probably the app that blew my mind the most. The graphics on this app just emphasize how truly revolutionary the iPhone’s display really is. Nothing more to say about this app, you know what Google Earth is, I think the iPhone version does everything the desktop version does. Amazing! However, and this is a big however, Apple left out Street View for the iPod Touch, so out of protest, I am giving this app a 3/5. TAKE THAT, APPLE!
  • IM+LITE: Another IM app that allows you to chat in AIM, MSN, GTalk, Yahoo, ICQ, Jabber, and MySpace IM. Why do I need this if I have Fring you ask? One huge advantage in this app is the ability to type in landscape mode. Huge plus for me. However, no Skype and no Facebook chat. 3/5 sounds fair to me.
  • iTalk: Cute little voice recorder app made by Griffin. I have used this on numerous occasions, like when you are on the road or in bed with no pen and you need to jot something down, just record a voice note. Useful app with a great interface including a huge record and stop button. I guess 3/5 as it does not do very much.
Very Not Cool, Steve!

Very Not Cool, Steve!

  • Palringo: Yet another IM app that includes iChat in it’s list of IM services. So why do I need this if I have Fring and IM+Lite? Good question, maybe I will delete it. No, I’m kidding, what this app brings that no others have, is the ability to send pictures to your contacts as well as a voice recording, kinda like a walkie talkie feature. It is actually kinda cool, the thing is,¬† I found that when I send these audio clips to contacts, they get it as a link and 99% of the time, they are afraid to open it because of the common issue of IM spam. I give this app a 3/5, no Facebook, no Skype, and no landscape mode, but still a nice app.
  • RTM: I know Aryeh loves this app, but after a few days of use, I do not share his excitement. Yes, it is probably the best task manager (by the way, I have yet to find a task manager in the traditional sense of the word, you know like the Windows one that shows which processes are running etc.), and it syncs nicely with the Web, but I just do not love the interface, nor do I love the fact that it has a limited license, and after the trial period, you need to pay for it. It’s big advantage as opposed to the other task managers is the ability to write in landscape mode. I give RTM a 3/5.

OK I am going to wrap things up with two great games:

  • Labyrinth Lite Edition: This game is without a doubt the number 1 most addictive game on the iPod/iPhone. Using the accelerometer, you need to get the silver ball into the hole at the end of the maze. The graphics are awesome and it blows my mind how it picks up on your every move with great sensitivity. Disclaimer: Play this thing at your own risk, there is a major risk of wasted time and addiction. This game gets a 5/5.
Highly Addictive

Highly Addictive

  • Mini Piano: A great app that simply puts a piano on your screen and lets you play. Very cute and simple. Nothing else to say about it, watch a demo in the video below. I guess 4/5 due to lack of sophistication.

OK, that sums up my first home screen. I try to keep no more than 4 home screens worth of apps so generally when I download a new app, I delete something from the previous screen. I will post again about the other 3 home screens, but the above apps are most definitely my favorites, hence the fact that they are on the first home screen.

It is also important to point out that I have yet to pay for an app. I simply have not come across an app that was worth paying for or alternatively one that did not have an almost identical free app. When I do, you will be the first to know.

-Hillel

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iPod Touch Users Get Compensation in the Form of CPU

Sorry iPhone-ers

Sorry iPhone-ers

Just as iPod Touch users were starting to feel anger towards Apple and their discriminatory decision to leave Street View out of the Touch’s firmware upgrade, we discovered a little piece of news that changes everything completely. It turns out that the 2nd gen iPod Touch is running a faster processor than the original Touch and… (if you have an iPhone, stop reading here) even the iPhone 3G.

While the original iPod Touch and both iPhones run a 400 MHz CPU and a 100 MHz bus, my baby is packing a 532 MHz CPU and a 133 MHz bus. In English? The new iPod Touch moves faster than the original Touch, as well as both iPhones. So it turns out the built in speaker and the hardware volume controls are not the only enhancements to the new iPod Touch. Nice!

In other big news, Apple is going green. They just released an ad showing how the new Macbook is the greenest Macbook ever. It is so green that it runs on a quarter of the power of a single light bulb and its enclosure is completely recyclable. It is so green that even the arrows in its ad are green. Watch the video below.

Lastly, Gizmodo shared their full review of one of the nicest Windows Mobile touchscreen devices out there, the Samsung Omnia. Just a quick reminder, the Omnia packs a 3.2″ touchscreen display, 3.5G, WiFi 802.11b/g, A2DP, a 5MP cam, all in a sleek12.5 mm thick package. Not bad, right? Gizmodo does not seem to agree. Watch the video here.

You cannot deny the beauty

You Cannot Deny the Beauty

Bottom line is they believe the Storm to be a more “compelling and usable device”. Well, being as the Storm did not do so well itself and is apparently full of bugs, that does not say too much for the Omnia.

-Hillel

If Only its Software Matched up

If Only its Software Matched up

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iPhones/iPod Touches Keep you Busy

touch_horz_34-screen-9509e8aa62916bc025efd06f76774892

I know I have not posted in a few days, but there is a totally logical explanation for that and it is not laziness. My wife bought me a 32GB 2nd generation iPod Touch for my birthday, and I have not been able to put it down since. The Apple integration with the app store is like nothing else, and with all my excitement about various Windows Mobile phones, there is no question in my mind that my next cellular handset will be a phone manufactured by Apple inc.

In addition to the amazing app store and its simple integration, the entire Apple interface for the iPod Touch is seriously unbelievable. I have used Windows Mobile and Symbian devices before (hopefully soon to use Google devices too) and not only do these operating systems not compare to that of Apple’s, we are literally talking Apples and Oranges here. Did I confuse you just now with that expression? What I am trying to say here, and I guess we all know this already, is that Apple’s OS is leagues above its competition’s. Sorry Touch HD, sorry 5800, but the truth must be told. Apple did in the software world what the HD did in the hardware world, i.e kicked everyone else’s butt!

I have been spending a lot of time in the app store downloading totally useless and truly entertaining apps, so if you have any recomendations for me, post em in the comments. One app that sticks out is Firemail, which enables you to send emails using a landscape keyboard, very useful and well done.

ipodtouch_image5_20080909

The input method on the iPhone and iPod is not perfect, I make a few mistakes while typing, but with Apple’s correction software, it is pretty darn close to perfect. I know there are endless posts on the Web on this topic, but for what it’s worth, I need to say that in my opinion, the screen on the iPod Touch is freakin amazing. What else can I say? Until you have held one of these things in your hand, you cannot understand how unbelievably thin it is, not to mention how solid and beautilfully designed the Touch is.

There is one problem I can think of. I need to find a good enough case that will protect my baby on one hand, while not ruining the looks with some bulky ugly looking plastic on the other. Ideas?

Bottom line? I love my iPod Touch and I LOVE my wife!

-Hillel

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Which Color is Your Color?

Choose your color, and Technmarketing.com will have it sent to you.

Na, I’m kidding (maybe if we got a few more readers and some sponsered ads). I am just curious which¬†color does it for our readers!

I am on the fence between the silver (first on the left) and the green (in the middle).

Comment to vote!

-Hillel

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