Product Review: Your Cheat Sheet to the Apple (AAPL) iPad

On April 3rd, 2010, the publishing industry as we’ve known it changed forever. The iPad, an evolutionary game-changer, hit the hands of the consumer for the very first time.

Since launching one of the coolest, groundbreaking technological devices in history, Apple (AAPL) is selling over 1 million iPads a month. We were able to get our hands on an iPad just a few weeks after Steve Jobs gave his presentation and Apple began selling it to the public.

First-Mover Advantage Wins Again

From the iPod to the iPad, Apple (AAPL) understands the most vital ingredients necessary to deliver new product innovation to consumers. That is why to date Apple still cannot satisfy demand for the iPad.

The iPad was the must-have device once it was released because there was nothing else like it in existence. Now, it’s back-to-school Summer shopping season, and all I see everywhere is free marketing for the iPad (e.g., sign up for [enter the service here] and enter your chance to win a free iPad). Simply put, the word-of-mouth marketing for the iPad is reminiscent of the iPod days. The iPad is the new hot tech gadget on the block that is cool for just about any co-promotion out there.

Here is your Cheat Sheet Review of the iPad:

The Screen is Superior

The iPad possesses the sleekest 9.7 inch touch screen on the e-reader/tablet market, easily surpassing the Nook (BKS) and Kindle (AMZN). The screen is color, visually displays a crisp picture, and allows for very easy navigation.

When surfing the web or reading a book from the Apple store, the text is super easy to read. You can manually enlarge or minimize the screen with your finger on the touch screen based on your visual preferences. Additionally, the iPad acts as a mobile photo album with a digital picture frame. Standing on its own, the iPad is a half-inch thin and only 1.5 lbs.

The iPad is Also a Bigger iPod

Whether you are sitting pool side this Summer and need some tunes or you’re inside and want to hook your iTunes playlist into your speakers, the iPad serves as a mobile modern day boom box — only smaller, lighter and thinner. The audio quality and sound output on the iPad is as clear as a sunny day at the beach.

The Durability of the iPad Case is a Must

One of my major concerns with the device was the fragility of it while being mobile. I always felt I had to be extra cautious with it so I did not scratch the screen or get any dirt particles on it. All worries of device protection were alleviated with the iPad case. The flap covers the screen so the case opens like a book. If you are going to own an iPad, I highly recommend this case:

Other Key Positive Attributes:

– The App store is incredibly large and diverse in its offering.

– With the use of Dictation, I could speak to the iPad and it would convert my voice to text. Then, I could email myself notes I recorded, never having to type one button on a keyboard.

– Browsing the web was just as a easy as being on a laptop. Personally, I think the iPad gives laptops/netbooks a run for their money sooner than later. The mobility of the iPad is one of its greatest features. With a laptop, you need to pick it up and carry it around and set it down to begin typing. I could be standing up and easily type or surf on the iPad.

– The battery life was better than the Energizer bunny. I could spend all day, at least 10 hours, using the iPad and it still had remaining life. Whereas, with my MacBook, after just 3 hours of use my battery is signaling shutdown.

A Few Missing Links We May See in the Future

– Unfortunately, I could not multi-task on the iPad. But then again, it’s probably a good thing to stay focused on the task at hand. It would be beneficial down the road to be able to have a document open and also browse the web simultaneously.

– There is no video camera for web video conferencing. With such an incredible screen, it seems a future development could come in the form of more “Facetime” similar to the new iPhone 4.

– Eventually, I would also like to see Flash support. There’s nothing more frustrating than visiting a site on the web and not being able to load the video when you want it.

For additional suggestions for the future iPad, check out Tech Cheat Sheet Editor Elliot Turner’s latest list.

The Real Result: Apple Sold 3.27 Million iPads in 3rd Quarter

According to Apple’s 2nd quarter earnings report, Steve Jobs is saving technology with a major catalyst during a “steep uphill climb” in this economic environment. The truth is always in the numbers and the consumer is always right. In Apple’s case, the iPad is officially a hit and exceeded everyone’s expectations on innovation and first generation capabilities.

Recently, I spoke with an anonymous Apple retail distributor and they said, “Apple is rationing iPads to retail locations. We have a laundry list of interested iPad buyers who put their name down at our store. We anxiously await iPads from Apple and customers anxiously await iPads from us.”


Do not underestimate the powerful capability of Apple’s efficient and methodical planning to yield successful sales. Apple continues to prove to all the sideline observers, fans, skeptics, and analysts alike, there is no ‘economic slowdown’ or ‘jobless recovery’ or even ‘Great Consumer Recession’ at Apple … just a brewing American capitalist economy success story in its prime.

How many iPads did Apple sell in 110+ days? We’ll have to anxiously await the next update … stay tuned! Let us know if you are going to be one of those new iPad owners. Or, if you have an iPad, share your review in the comments below.