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Figuring Out the iPad's Place

Soulskill posted about 5 months ago | from the glued-to-the-ceiling dept.

Handhelds 333

An anonymous reader writes "One of the most interesting notes from Apple's recent quarterly report was that iPad sales are down. Pundits were quick to jump on that as evidence that the iPad was just a fad, but there were still more than 16 million units sold. iPads, and the tablet market as a whole, clearly aren't a fad, but it's also unclear where they're going. They're not convincingly replacing PCs on one end or phones on the other. Meanwhile, PCs and phones are both morphing into things that are more like tablets. New form factors often succeed (or fail) based on what they can do better than old form factors, and the iPad hasn't done enough to make itself distinct, yet. Ben Thompson had an insightful take on people demanding desktop functionality from the iPad: 'This sounds suspiciously like the recommendation that the only thing holding the Macintosh back was its inability to run Apple II programs. It's also of a piece with the vast majority of geek commentary on the iPad: multiple windows, access to the file system, so on and so forth. I also think it's misplaced. The future of the iPad is not to be a better Mac. That may happen by accident, just as the Mac eventually superseded the Apple II, but to pursue that explicitly would be to sacrifice what the iPad might become, and, more importantly, what it already is.'"

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Secretive Democracy Alliance Meeting (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46900911)

http://freebeacon.com/politics/security-tight-at-secretive-democracy-alliance-meeting/

"Democrats have long railed against the lack of transparency in political funding, but security was airtight this week as a hush-hush network of progressive moneymen and activists held a closed-door conference to map out their plan to shift U.S. policy to the left. ...
Partners in the Democracy Alliance are reportedly required to contribute a minimum of $200,000 per year to activist groups approved by the organization and pay annual dues of $30,000. ...
David Axelrod dined at the hotel’s restaurant Deca, which had a sign outside advertising its $100 grilled cheese sandwich filled with “40-year aged Wisconsin cheddar infused with 24K gold flakes.”

So Slashdot socialists, tell me again how the Republicans are the party of the rich and that the Democrats are the party of the little guy?

You sheep will buy anything, anything at all.

Disgusting.

Re:Secretive Democracy Alliance Meeting (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46900993)

Speaking of elite lying Democrats, How Did Harry Reid Get Rich?

http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/314025/how-did-harry-reid-get-rich-betsy-woodruff

"When Harry Reid entered the Nevada legislature in 1982, his net worth was listed as between $1 million and $1.5 million “or more,” according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. So, since inquiring minds inquire, let’s try to figure out how Reid’s career in public service ended up being so lucrative. He hasn’t released his tax returns, which makes this an imperfect science, but looking at a few of his investments helps to show how he amassed his wealth.

In 2004, the senator made $700,000 off a land deal that was, to say the least, unorthodox. It started in 1998 when he bought a parcel of land with attorney Jay Brown, a close friend whose name has surfaced multiple times in organized-crime investigations and whom one retired FBI agent described as “always a person of interest.” Three years after the purchase, Reid transferred his portion of the property to Patrick Lane LLC, a holding company Brown controlled. But Reid kept putting the property on his financial disclosures, and when the company sold it in 2004, he profited from the deal — a deal on land that he didn’t technically own and that had nearly tripled in value in six years.

When his 2010 challenger Sharron Angle asked him in a debate how he had become so wealthy, he said, “I did a very good job investing.” Did he ever. On December 20, 2005, he invested $50,000 to $100,000 in the Dow Jones U.S. Energy Sector Fund (IYE), which closed that day at $29.15. The companies whose shares it held included ExxonMobil, ChevronTexaco, and ConocoPhillips. When he made a partial sale of his shares on August 19, 2008, during congressional recess, IYE closed at $41.82. Just a month later, on September 17, Reid was working to bring to the floor a bill that the Joint Committee on Taxation said would cost oil companies — including those in the fund — billions of dollars in taxes and regulatory fees. The bill passed a few days later, and by October 10, IYE’s shares had fallen by 42 percent, to $24.41, for a host of reasons. Savvy investing indeed.

Here’s another example: The Los Angeles Times reported in November 2006 that when Reid became Senate majority leader he committed to making earmark reform a priority, saying he’d work to keep congressmen from using federal dollars for pet projects in their districts. It was a good idea but an odd one for the senator to espouse. He had managed to get $18 million set aside to build a bridge across the Colorado River between Laughlin, Nev., and Bullhead City, Ariz., a project that wasn’t a priority for either state’s transportation agency. His ownership of 160 acres of land nearby that stood to appreciate considerably from the project had nothing to do with the decision, according to one of his aides. The property’s value has varied since then. On his financial-disclosure forms from 2006, it was valued at $250,000 to $500,000. Open Secrets now lists it as his most valuable asset, worth $1 million to $5 million as of 2010."

Must be nice to not have to follow the rules us little people have to follow, to be rich and powerful and to continually rail on and on about how we need to raise taxes to take from the rich (except Harry Reed) and give to the poor (after taking our cut, which is like most of it anyway).

And fess up you internet assholes, how many of you support the Democrats? How many of you support crony capitalism, keeping your boot on the throat of the american people, stifling freedom and liberty all the while chomping down on $100 grilled cheese sandwiches, ourselves and our families protected by men with guns and an immunity to the law, while at the same time using the law in arbitrary ways to defeat opponents, ridicule the Tea Party and tax the people ever more and more and more?

Must be nice to be a king.

Re:Secretive Democracy Alliance Meeting (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901105)

You sheep will buy anything, anything at all.

Did you even read what you wrote? Sigh.

Re:Secretive Democracy Alliance Meeting (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901207)

Of course I read it, I wrote it. Shasldot is socialist central, support here for the Democrat party is in the high 90%, Barack Obama is universally loved, any conservative or Republican is universally hated (just try and mention Sarah Palin!). And yet, we see the Democrat party here schmoozing with their corporate pals, enjoying the finest of foods and basically having a great old time, all paid for on the backs of the "litle guy".

Obamacare! Great and happy solution to the problem of poor people having access to healthcare, *but*, people across the country are having their rates skyrocket, plans cancelled, treatments denied and to boot this is generally screwing the economy and ... wait for it,.. the Democrats in government are all EXEMPTED from their wonderful socialist plan.

Socialism is for the people, not the socialists!

But go on then, keep bashing Republicans and voting for tyrants like Obama.

Re:Secretive Democracy Alliance Meeting (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901441)

Of course I read it, I wrote it.

You wrote:

David Axelrod dined at the hotel’s restaurant Deca, which had a sign outside advertising its $100 grilled cheese sandwich filled with “40-year aged Wisconsin cheddar infused with 24K gold flakes.”

And then you wrote:

You sheep will buy anything, anything at all.

Want to point out that item off the menu [decarestaurant.com] ?

I imagine that the irony is lost on you.

Re:Secretive Democracy Alliance Meeting (-1, Offtopic)

Grishnakh (216268) | about 5 months ago | (#46901193)

WTF does this have to do with iPads?

Anyway, the Koch Brothers are the poster boy for the Republicans, so I'll tell it to you in a simple soundbite you can hopefully understand:

Republicans are the party of the rich (esp. those involved with oil and defense contracting).
Democrats are the party of the rich (esp. those involved with finance, Hollywood, and health insurance).
There is no party for the little guy.

Re:Secretive Democracy Alliance Meeting (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901301)

"There is no party for the little guy."

So why then do we constantly see around here nearly overwhelming support for Democrat politicians, policies and near universal hatred for the Republicans?

Obamacare is destroying our healthcare system, but it is supported here by people in huge numbers.

Simple conservative ideas such as removing barriers to cross state insurance sales, not taxing healthcare spending, tort reform etc, are dismissed as evil Republican plans and Obamacare is given a pass.

How do you explain that then?

Re:Secretive Democracy Alliance Meeting (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901455)

Obamacare is destroying our healthcare system

You had a healthcare system?

Re:Secretive Democracy Alliance Meeting (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901587)

It's all very simple

The social agenda of America's right is downright awful, even if their economic policies have some sense to them.

American right wing social policies is what most sensible people hate, while some American right wing economics are very good and others are very bad. Assuming politics can be easily divided into social policy and economic policy, then 75% of what the GOP stands for is not welcome by Slashdot.

The democrats on other hand, have economic policies that are 50% loved and 50% hated, but their social policies are more favourable in general.

In other words, american slashdotters are simply forced to pick between bad and worse, and since we're all supposed to be smarter than the average bear, it's quite clear that picking bad over worse is the sensible choice.

What you don't realize you're doing, is exposing the flawed democracy that the US currently enjoys.

Re:Secretive Democracy Alliance Meeting (-1, Offtopic)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 5 months ago | (#46901577)

There is no party for the little guy.

Alan Eggleston would disagree.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A... [wikipedia.org]

It already found its place. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46900913)

It exists already in the niche that exists between the full computer experience, and the phone experience. Why the hell would it have an infinite growth and replace computers and phones?

Market saturation (5, Insightful)

danceswithtrees (968154) | about 5 months ago | (#46900931)

Perhaps sales are slowing down because of market saturation. The iPad was the first of its kind (that people actually bought, used, and liked). Almost everyone who wants one has probably bought one and the slowing rate reflects market saturation. A diminishing pool of new buyers and a steady pool of people replacing older models would help to explain the "dwindling" sales.

Re:Market saturation (2)

Lumpy (12016) | about 5 months ago | (#46901037)

Exactly, My wife has no interest in replacing her iPad 2 and my iPad 4 is perfectly fine. Maybe in a couple of year's I'll replace mine.

Same with the Nexus 7 I have, no burning urge to go get the latest shiny that is exactly the same as my current shiny.

Re:Market saturation (4, Insightful)

lagomorpha2 (1376475) | about 5 months ago | (#46901245)

So what you're saying is, the feature that is ultimately lacking from modern tablets is "planned obsolescence".

Apple, Intel, ARM, and all screwed up when they designed systems that would still work 2 years down the road.

Re:Market saturation (4, Insightful)

MBGMorden (803437) | about 5 months ago | (#46901393)

That's the computer market as a whole. From the early 80's up until about 2005 computers were always slow. Slow to the point where people got frustrated, and the never ending progression of speed made upgrading every 2 years (or even faster) the norm.

Then sometime around 2005-ish things seem to get to a point where people weren't waiting on the computer anymore. An upgrade meant little because outside of gaming the computer likely wouldn't "feel" any faster.

Heck I used to build a new computer annually, but I just rebuilt my computer about 2 weeks ago that I had been running since 2009. Not because it was too slow, but because half the USB ports had died on the motherboard.

At this point its gotten to be about like a car. I don't buy a new computer because I want something "better" anymore. I buy when the old one is broken or has more problems than are worth fixing. Tablets are the same way. Honestly I think phones would be too except that due to the way they're carried they suffer a lot more wear and tear and simply break more frequently.

Re:Market saturation (0)

nickittynickname (2753061) | about 5 months ago | (#46901655)

There is, it's why you have to pay a $150 service charge to replace the battery. The planned obsolescence is the lifespan of the battery. Which should be around 2 - 3 years.

And longevity concerns? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) | about 5 months ago | (#46901347)

Maybe in a couple of year's I'll replace mine.

I wonder whether part of the problem is that after having one of these devices, people aren't so keen to replace them. Our third gen iPad is about two years old, and already we have problems with app upgrades breaking things, and of course Apple themselves pushing us to upgrade to a new version of iOS that gets terrible reviews. Plus the general closed ecosystem isn't an obvious downer for most people when you buy the first time, but after finding all the little frustrating things it can't do, I can see that at least some significant proportion of users might be put off.

Tablets as a format seem to be useful for a certain niche: basically, they're good for receiving information and some basic interaction, but not serious interaction/content creation. But there are more tablets than just Apple's, and Android tablets seem to be increasing their market share at Apple's expense. So it might be a market saturation issue with the tablet format, but I suspect there's more to it than just that in the specific case of iPads.

Re:Market saturation (4, Insightful)

InsultsByThePound (3603437) | about 5 months ago | (#46901149)

After the bump in resolution, I just don't think there's much reason to upgrade. Speed is okay. The tech industry increasingly has to look at a future where it sells products that will be "good enough" for most people for a decade instead of 2 years.

What smart phones/tablets went through the last 7 years is what desktop and notebook PCs went through in the 80s/90s/early00s. Now very few people consider seriously getting a new desktop every 2 or even 4 years. And yes there will always be a segment that wants more speed, but as they grew the market for computers, that segment did not increase in proportion with it because most of those power users were already there by the nature of their work. Many of the power users that get added afterwards probably replace the ones that drop off for one reason or another.

And considering ewaste, this is not a bad thing. Except for companies whose stock price depends on them always pushing out more product than they did the same quarter last year.

Re:Market saturation (1)

alen (225700) | about 5 months ago | (#46901185)

yep

i can stream live TV and read books on my ipad 2 just fine even with the glass cracked

Re:Market saturation (3, Interesting)

Mr D from 63 (3395377) | about 5 months ago | (#46901297)

I've found that one to two year old tablet models are the best value when purchasing. No need to spend double for a small step change.

Re:Market saturation (1)

Mysticalfruit (533341) | about 5 months ago | (#46901295)

This is somewhat endemic of PCs at this point. We are not in the dark ages anymore... unless you're playing the latest and greatest FPS, even a 5 year old PC works just fine... At this point your OS is likely to wear out before your hardware!

I think the same can be said with tablets. My iPad 2 works just great. I have NO incentive to buy an iPad X (where X > 2). Hardware has gotten so good at this point that every "old" (i.e. ipad2) is still great.

Re:It already found its place. (3, Insightful)

rudy_wayne (414635) | about 5 months ago | (#46901029)

The future of the iPad is not to be a better Mac. That may happen by accident, just as the Mac eventually superseded the Apple II, but to pursue that explicitly would be to sacrifice what the iPad might become, and, more importantly, what it already is.'"

What the iPad "already is" is an inferior computer. It's great for niche applications. When I hired a plumber he pulled out his iPad, used it to process my credit card payment, tapped a couple of buttons and emailed me a copied of the bill.

But it's not a general purpose computer. The small screen, no keyboard and no external ports make it useless for doing any real work. Except for niche applications, it's strictly a content consumption device.

Re:It already found its place. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901157)

Except that a) it *has* an external port, b) can connect to a physical keyboard if a particular use case benefits from one (usually through bluetooth), c) it has a screen *larger* than many of the first PCs, and d) many people already use the iPad for real work.

The iPad isn't the problem you need to identify. The source of your myopia is.

Re:It already found its place. (2, Informative)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#46901237)

a) it *has* an external port

Whose licensing is controlled with an iron fist, compared to a lot of 1980s PCs that used standard (or at least unpatented) external interfaces.

it has a screen *larger* than many of the first PCs

True, the monitor in the old black-and-white "toaster" Macs (128K, 512K, 512Ke, Plus, SE, SE/30, Classic, Classic II) was smaller than the iPad's screen. But many of the PCs that preceded it had 240p video output compatible with standard-definition televisions. The Apple II and Commodore 64 sure did. And I think even by the early 1980s, televisions had surpassed that size.

many people already use the iPad for real work

Unlike Apple with the iPad, makers of 1980s PCs had no power to forbid particular applications. Developers' imagination and the hardware capacity were the only limits.

Re:It already found its place. (0)

MightyYar (622222) | about 5 months ago | (#46901533)

Screen resolution on the iPad is better than my work computer.

The only valid arguments you are making are ideological, and those can be mitigated by purchasing one of the Android tablets instead. I wouldn't want to program on such a limited device, but I've seen people use them for everything from recording doctor's notes to logging in to remote servers via ssh. They are fantastic for certain types of casual gaming. They are great for viewing videos. And they are superior to PCs for couch surfing. Millions of people edit photos on them. They are fine for personal finance, even something like TurboTax. Stick a keyboard on there and they make fine word processors for the 95% use case.

Again, I'm not suggesting that they can replace most engineers' workstations, but they certainly can be useful tools.

Re:It already found its place. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901255)

Not an iPad fan but I would say that your plumber is using it for real work. Billing and Receipt of Payment is an awfully important part of any small business.

Re:It already found its place. (2)

MBGMorden (803437) | about 5 months ago | (#46901489)

I think it really depends. A lot of people who always used a laptop seem to be better served by keeping the laptop. I personally have always hated a laptop for general usage though. Compared to a desktop they've always been limited in specs and had smaller screens and bad keyboards.

HOWEVER, for those times when I'm out traveling I need something portable, and the tablets work great for that. I'm not out working, and any email I send is basically "Hey I'm out till Monday - I'll check with you when I'm back in the office.". Other than that all I want to do is check Facebook/Twitter, look at restaurant reviews, etc.

Basically, the tablet is a great portable computer to do the things I HAVE to do on a computer when I'm away and don't really want/need to spend a lot of time on a "real" computer. Just enough system to meet my needs without getting in the way.

Re:It already found its place. (0)

Hognoxious (631665) | about 5 months ago | (#46901155)

Why the hell would it have an infinite growth and replace computers and phones?

Because Elon Musk invented it.

Re:It already found its place. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901163)

I see the iPad as something a bit like the IBM PC in today's desktop space, it popularized and shaped the market but use FUD and legal tactics to slow their inevitable shrink into an irrelevant share of the overall tablet market.

To put it another way, theyre the 3rd party candidate in a US presidential election where Android is both of the two major parties. They have a voice and might have a few interesting ideas but they'll never be in a position to win.

Re:It already found its place. (4, Informative)

immaterial (1520413) | about 5 months ago | (#46901217)

iPad sales aren't down at all - compare the combined q1 and q2 of last year and this year and they're basically even. The difference is for the 2013 fiscal year, Apple was unable to fulfill the holiday backlog in q1 so more sales fell in q2. This year that backlog didn't happen, so Apple had "record-breaking" sales in q1 and "omg-less-than-last-year!" sales in q2. This is a nonstory to anyone who puts the slightest thought into it.

Re:It already found its place. (1)

unixisc (2429386) | about 5 months ago | (#46901469)

I don't see PCs filling in their space. I can see phones filling in their space.

Hearthstone (4, Funny)

B33rNinj4 (666756) | about 5 months ago | (#46900935)

I thought the iPad was Blizzard's new Hearthstone console.

We already have one... (4, Insightful)

Kenja (541830) | about 5 months ago | (#46900937)

Sales are down because we already have one and don't need two. The things are not nearly as disposable as people seem to think.

Re:We already have one... (1, Informative)

Hadlock (143607) | about 5 months ago | (#46900975)

Seconding this. Apple's first attempt was so good that by the time they added a high resolution display, a faster processor and 3G for those who need it, it was a mature product with no more features to add within three generations. If you have a third gen iPad you don't need to upgrade for as long as you can get replacement screens and batteries for it.

Apple needs to add TouchID, etc (1)

rsborg (111459) | about 5 months ago | (#46901335)

Sales are down because we already have one and don't need two. The things are not nearly as disposable as people seem to think.

I'd have bought an iPad Air or new Mini if it had TouchID. We already have two iPads, but putting the v1 out to pasture would have been worth it to no deal with password entry. Also iOS7 isn't nearly as appealing for an iPad as it was for the iPhone (control center is a must for phones).

Re:Apple needs to add TouchID, etc (1)

Savage-Rabbit (308260) | about 5 months ago | (#46901479)

Sales are down because we already have one and don't need two. The things are not nearly as disposable as people seem to think.

I'd have bought an iPad Air or new Mini if it had TouchID. We already have two iPads, but putting the v1 out to pasture would have been worth it to no deal with password entry. Also iOS7 isn't nearly as appealing for an iPad as it was for the iPhone (control center is a must for phones).

I'd also buy a new iPad for touch ID but I can live without it. I was planning to get the smaller iPad model in 128Gb for extra storage. Now that there will apparently be a 5.5" iPhablet I'll probably just get one of those and buy the big iPad air once I fill the old one up with eBooks.

Re:We already have one... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901399)

The things are not nearly as disposable as people seem to think.

Don't worry, Apple is working on making them more fragile and more difficult to repair.

Dead on Arrival for Geeks (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46900947)

There are people out there who prefer that the iPad was more like the iMac, ie no lockdown nonsense, just give us access to the file system like on regular macs.

Re:Dead on Arrival for Geeks (4, Insightful)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | about 5 months ago | (#46901007)

Agreed. If only there were an OS that had the same user experience for phones, tablets and PCs...

Re:Dead on Arrival for Geeks (0, Troll)

Lumpy (12016) | about 5 months ago | (#46901051)

Well Microsoft has one that give you a really shitty experience across all platforms, but I don't think that is what he was looking for.

Re:Dead on Arrival for Geeks (1)

jedidiah (1196) | about 5 months ago | (#46901059)

It's not about the "user experience". It's about how much control you can exert over the system. The form factor really doesn't matter. What can you do with it? What roadblocks are the OS/hardware vendor going to put in your way?

A tablet doesn't need a "full desktop experience" to run an SSH server or a proper copy of CUPS.

Re:Dead on Arrival for Geeks (3, Insightful)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 5 months ago | (#46901143)

A tablet doesn't need a "full desktop experience" to run an SSH server or a proper copy of CUPS.

Guess what? In terms of sales, the ability to run SSH or CUPS is somewhat less important than the ability to run knitting pattern apps.

Tablet or phone that docks to become a PC (1)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#46901161)

Some people want both the always-available "mobile" experience and the focused-activity PC experience. The input and output devices would obviously differ, but technically, it could be made switchable within one device.
Tablet as PC
A tablet with a plug-in or Bluetooth keyboard should be able to run PC software much as netbooks did. Right now, popular products implementing this are Microsoft's Surface Pro and ASUS's Transformer Book.
Phone as PC
Now that ARM CPUs in phones have reached quad-core, with more memory than the majority of of PCs had a decade ago, they have enough computing power to run (recompiled versions of) the sort of applications a PC ran a decade ago. A plug-in or Bluetooth keyboard and an HDMI monitor should let phones run more PC-style apps, with multiple visible windows. But I haven't seen a lot of phones that deviate from the "all maximized all the time" window management policy even when plugged into a 1080p monitor. One could do this on Android with a Debian chroot and an X11 server. The "Ubuntu for Android" project was focused on this dockable use case, where the user could start X11 and run Ubuntu apps, but Canonical recently decided to deprioritize it in favor of Ubuntu Phone [slashdot.org] .

Politically it's another story. The incumbent carriers and device manufacturers don't know how to market a phone that can become a PC.

Re:Dead on Arrival for Geeks (1)

Hognoxious (631665) | about 5 months ago | (#46901235)

That makes as much sense as controlling a motorbike with the cockpit of a 747.

Re:Dead on Arrival for Geeks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901539)

Ubuntu?

Re:Dead on Arrival for Geeks (2)

alen (225700) | about 5 months ago | (#46901233)

well it's not DOA for people who spend time away from a traditional computer. i have an ipad 2 and 4

my kids play games on it
remote control for apple TV, roku, xbox and other devices
i stream live TV via the time warner cable app and netflix and HBO Go. I can watch Got in the kitchen away from my kids. i can sit with my wife while she watches american idol on the TV, i'll watch a game on the ipad
i can read a book on it
Google docs and Pages i can finally finish that novel i started writing. anywhere
i can order airline tickets and check into my flight on the couch
dozen other uses that have nothing to do with file systems or geeky stuff

Game control on iPad (1)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#46901321)

it's not DOA for people who spend time away from a traditional computer.

The problem comes when people buy only an iPhone and/or iPad and then delude themselves into thinking they wouldn't benefit from also buying a traditional computer.

my kids play games on it

How are games for iPad controlled? I'm aware of two kinds of games that work well on a touch screen: single- or two- button games like Canabalt and point-and-click games like Plants vs. Zombies. What control method would work well for a game like Mega Man or Castlevania? I tried playing the demo of Pixeline and the Jungle Treasure on a tablet, and control was so imprecise that I couldn't make jumps until I switched to a Bluetooth keyboard. So I still think keyboards and gamepads still have their place.

Re:Game control on iPad (1)

alen (225700) | about 5 months ago | (#46901547)

my oldest kid is getting into flight sims and drive/parking games
A LOT of flight sims on ipad along with drive parking games. the controls mostly suck but he likes them. the flight sims you can tilt the ipad to control the plane

depends on the games you like but there is more to gaming than FPS and console crap. if you want a running game then there is temple run. he also played jetpack joyride for endless scroller

Re: Dead on Arrival for Geeks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901409)

I get your point, but you literally named nothing a laptop wouldn't do better. For me, all those things you mentioned are not the niche. The only way I feel like a tablet would be useful is for very mobile applications. GPS replacement. Ereader replacement. Gameboy replacement. However, for me, again, I don't feel like tablets do any of those things better. Always connected mobility and apps: smartphone. GPS: Garmin. eReader: Kindle. Productivity: laptop. I just can't think of one single reason I want a tablet. WTF do they do best?

Use a tablet while standing (2)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#46901519)

you literally named nothing a laptop wouldn't do better.

If you're doing something that doesn't involve typing, a tablet is easier to use while standing up and holding the device. That's the biggest advantage of tablets: they don't need to be set on a desk or lap.

Always connected mobility and apps: smartphone.

For which the carrier will want you to subscribe to yet another voice and data plan. Otherwise, it's just a 4" tablet like the iPod touch.

GPS: Garmin. eReader: Kindle.

Additional devices to carry and keep charged.

Re: Dead on Arrival for Geeks (1)

alen (225700) | about 5 months ago | (#46901569)

i'm not going to put a laptop on the kitchen counter or my wife's legs to watch TV while i load the dish washer or make some food or sit with her on the couch

if i want a break i can have my kids play the xbox or stream netflix on the TV and i'll watch HBO Go or baseball on the ipad in the kitchen.

Re:Dead on Arrival for Geeks (2)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 5 months ago | (#46901395)

This is why I got the Surface 2 (not pro). It has a real file system. I can mount network drives. I can go to the command prompt (or powershell). Sure it's locked down as far as what apps you can run, but you can compile things yourself using the free version of Visual Studio. Personally I think it's a lot less locked down than Android or iPad. And the hardware is quite expandable. It has USB3, so you can plug in all kinds of external peripherals. It's not as open as a Linux tablet would be, but I don't think I've seen anything like that out in the wild that actually worked well. I think the only thing more open is the Surface Pro, but that's a little outside my price range.

In The Trash? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46900957)

So there's more room for real tools, not toys.

Re:In The Trash? (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 5 months ago | (#46901571)

If life didn't have room for toys, that spot where the flatscreen is hanging would look pretty bare. So would the marina. Toys are awesome, and the main motivation for working.

Wrong direction? (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 5 months ago | (#46900963)

"This sounds suspiciously like the recommendation that the only thing holding the Macintosh back was its inability to run Apple II programs"

To me, the iPad situation seems more like Apple II being unable to run Macintosh programs.

Re:Wrong direction? (1)

Extide (1002782) | about 5 months ago | (#46901057)

You realize that the Macintosh came after the Apple II, just as the iPad came after the (modern) Macintosh. The comparison is saying the newer platform cannot run the stuff from the older platform.

Re:Wrong direction? (1)

supremebob (574732) | about 5 months ago | (#46901223)

I think that he means that the iPad is underpowered compared to any Mac product made in the last 5 years.

Either that, or he's complaining that the iPad software is too overly simplified. The software selection on the iPad is OK, but what you can actually DO with the software still pales to what you can do with a real computer. I sure as hell wouldn't want to write a manual or edit a film on one.

Re:Wrong direction? (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 5 months ago | (#46901625)

Agreed. At no point was the Apple II more powerful than the Mac. It also looked pretty much like the Mac: keyboard, mouse, screen. Just because Apple branded their newest computer with a new name did not make it a new product category. Apple even shipped a GUI for the II series.

Define personal computer (4, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#46900965)

From the Time article:

I [...] still believe what I wrote back in 2011 when I said that all the general-purpose devices we use for computing and communications–desktop computers, laptops, smartphones, tablets and maybe even a do-everything console like the Xbox One–are PCs. They just happen to come in a variety of form factors, with different capabilities.

To me, it's not a personal computer unless the person who owns it controls what computing is done on it. Nintendo has rejected games such as The Binding of Isaac, and Apple has rejected applications such as WiFi-Where. This makes these platforms not general-purpose. Thus there's no "do-everything console" unless you count set-top Android devices such as OUYA or set-top PCs such as the forthcoming Steam Machines.

Re:Define personal computer (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901201)

Strange... I control what computing is done on my iPad. (Except when my wife is using it. Then *she* controls it.)

By your definition, a modern, high-spec Windows box isn't a 'personal computer' because I can't choose to run AS400 software on it. (Someone other than me made a decision which prevents me from doing so.)

HW maker's restriction vs. app maker's restriction (2)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#46901425)

Strange... I control what computing is done on my iPad.

Not if a particular computing is among the classes of computing that the App Store Review Guidelines forbid. Then you have to buy a second computer (a Mac) and pay a recurring iOS Developer Program fee to take control of your device. By then, you own the hardware but lease the privilege to use it.

By your definition, a modern, high-spec Windows box isn't a 'personal computer' because I can't choose to run AS400 software on it.

You can choose to recompile your AS400 software for it, or you can run an emulator. Apple, on the other hand, forbids emulators that allow users to add their own software.

(Someone other than me made a decision which prevents me from doing so.)

It's not just "someone other than [you]". I'm referring to restrictions put in place by the manufacturer of the device on which you want to run applications, not restrictions put in place by the publisher of an application. If a particular application is proprietary, binary-only software available only for System i, it's not the PC maker that put this restriction in place but the application publisher.

Re:Define personal computer (3, Insightful)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 5 months ago | (#46901311)

Thus there's no "do-everything console" unless you count set-top Android devices such as OUYA or set-top PCs such as the forthcoming Steam Machines.

OUYA failed big time. In fact we've had consoles for nearly 40 years, and no open console has ever succeeded. So maybe, just maybe, that's not what people want. There's no big demand for an open console.

And lest anyone says that open phones have been successful. (Leaving aside the dubious claim to Android openness.) Android phones have been successful by being the cheap option. Not by being the open option. The mass market isn't like the niche that populates Slashdot. They neither know nor care about this concept of "openness" in software.

Re:Define personal computer (1)

CronoCloud (590650) | about 5 months ago | (#46901419)

To me, it's not a personal computer unless the person who owns it controls what computing is done on it. This makes these platforms not general-purpose.

Fine, if you're going to be THAT literal, they are "special purpose personal computers. They don't HAVE to be general purpose.

Nintendo has rejected games such as The Binding of Isaac,

BoA's developers were stupid to even try to port to the 3DS. Nintendo, far more than Sony or Microsoft tries to portray itself as "the choice for families who want their games to be 'safe' ". Nintendo's portables skew a bit younger than average. BoA's religious content would be considered too risky to publish by Nintendo. BoA's developers would have been better off going for the PS4 and Vita.

Re:Define personal computer (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901435)

I disagree. There has never been a time when you could not write software for your personal device (at least since Apple provided a compiler for IOS). You may still complain about file system accessibility, but you can write personal software for your IOS device.

NO (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46900967)

IT IS FAIL BECAUSE IT DON'T RUN LOOOOOONICKS!

sldkfjelk flkjwlkejlkj flkj flkej flkj elkj slkj flkje

Multi user setup (3, Interesting)

TeamSPAM (166583) | about 5 months ago | (#46900969)

I would like it if different pass codes unlocked to different layouts. This way I can have a more restricted layout and app for my son.

Re:Multi user setup (5, Funny)

NotSanguine (1917456) | about 5 months ago | (#46901159)

I would like it if different pass codes unlocked to different layouts. This way I can have a more restricted layout and app for my son.

But then you wouldn't need to have one for you *and* one for him. Those Apple folks need to buy new yachts, my friend. What are you trying to do, kill the global economy? Geez Louise!

Not surprising (3, Informative)

Registered Coward v2 (447531) | about 5 months ago | (#46901013)

The tablet market gas gone through the early adopters and is maturing. It also appears to have a longer replacement cycle time than say cell phones, probably do to cost and newer models do not necessarily offer must have features, unlike phones which go from 2G-3G-4G LTE. Cost also figure into replacement time.

Right know, iPads and other tablets are good enough, even several generations old ones, for the uses that do better on a tablet than a cell phone but don't need a PC to be acceptable. For example, reading eBooks, browsing the web, light office suite use, etc. Despite speed increases and better screens, a Gen 1 iPad is still pretty good at that so there in no compelling reason to shell out $500 or more for a new one.

That said, tablets need to migrate beyond the "it's a mobile PC" mentality to becoming an information appliance that is used to get desired information in a variety of settings. In short, a mobile gateway to information that is now accessed in other ways and where a PC is to cumbersome and a phone too small.A good example is Synology's video viewer app. You can access videos from the NAS on an iPad (or phone) and use airplay to put it to a TV; bypassing a separate PC server for playback. If you leave the room you can continue to watch on the iPad or send it to another TV in the room you go to. In short, the iPad is the common connector for a better viewing experience; not a replacement viewer.

Re:Not surprising (3, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | about 5 months ago | (#46901067)

Phones are slowing as well, Short of me breaking it or the battery dying, I can easily see my HTC ONE M8 lasting 4 years. It's probably why HTC made sure the battery was not replaceable in the phone... to ensure it will stop working.

Re:Not surprising (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | about 5 months ago | (#46901331)

It's probably why HTC made sure the battery was not replaceable in the phone... to ensure it will stop working.

Wow, and that's probably my favorite feature of my current HTC phone. I guess I won't be getting another HTC.

Re:Not surprising (2)

Lumpy (12016) | about 5 months ago | (#46901509)

Their flagship they intentionally made it not repairable in every way. The battery is actually BEHIND the LCD screen, so when it swells at the end of it's life it will shatter the screen.

They could have made the phone 1mm thicker and made the battery replaceable.

Funny you mention Video (1)

rsborg (111459) | about 5 months ago | (#46901413)

The iPad for us is a perfect "mobile TV". In the kitchen, even on the dining table (for particularly tough nights for the kids), in the car - it's the equivalent of what would have cost us thousands of $$ in separate equipment even 5 years ago.

Problem is, the iPad1 is doing such a great job for this, that it's still around. If Apple were to innovate in this space - there are many features that could be improved - weight, TouchID, connectivity to iCloud for video, etc, we'd happily be buying a newer one. For now, the v1 is still here and works just as well as our iPad mini (bigger screen = better for video).

This is an area that's ripe for expansion - maybe a larger screen unit? Remote control (like Remote.app) to control the iPad? The possibilities are manifold.

Re:Not surprising (1)

FlyHelicopters (1540845) | about 5 months ago | (#46901669)

The phones are going that direction as well.

We had a pair of Galaxy S3 phones, and upgraded to S4 phones to get the better CPU, 1080p screen, and a few other features.

The S5? Meh, nothing to see there, move along...

The S6? Meh, what can they add, a 1440p screen? for the size, 1080p is just fine, media hasn't grown all that much, maybe when it has a 4k screen and the world moves to 4k content.

It is fast, runs everything I throw at it, I have no reason to replace it.

Will I? Yes, probably for the S6 or S7, probably every 3 years now, when I used to replace every year.

Likewise with the iPad.

PC's are not morphing (2)

X0563511 (793323) | about 5 months ago | (#46901027)

Stupid-ass designers are forcing that shit down our throats without our willful participation.

Re:PC's are not morphing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901075)

Stupid-ass designers are forcing that shit down our throats without our willful participation.

Thank you. I'm glad someone noticed the Borg mentality with this ubiquitous desktop bullshit.

The iPad is not a truck (sorry Ted Stevens) (3, Interesting)

tepples (727027) | about 5 months ago | (#46901033)

From the AppleInsider article:

As for iPads, Cook still believes tablets will quickly replace PCs

That's not what Tim Cook's predecessor thought. Steve Jobs always used to claim that iPhone and iPad are to the Mac as cars are to trucks [archive.org] . The iPad is not a truck [slashdot.org] . Case in point: I'd be surprised if tablets replaced Apple's own PCs for running Xcode.

Re:The iPad is not a truck (sorry Ted Stevens) (1)

jedidiah (1196) | about 5 months ago | (#46901141)

Not quite.

Jobs and the collective was clearly of the opinion that "most people don't need trucks". Thus the whole "truck" terminology. For a clueless urbanite, it's some kind of slur.

Jobs tried to generalize his own narrow ideas about consumer choices in BOTH areas.

Re:The iPad is not a truck (sorry Ted Stevens) (1, Insightful)

CronoCloud (590650) | about 5 months ago | (#46901495)

Jobs and the collective was clearly of the opinion that "most people don't need trucks".

They don't. Most of the guys, and it is mostly guys who own trucks, use them as penis compensators driving to their cubicle jobs.

"Commercial" trucks owned by businesses are a different story.

Same goes for PC's. Most people are content consumers. While they might have a PC for some purposes, it doesn't have to be a high end "Ferrari" PC, it can be a sub-compact "Hyundai" PC, and they can do a lot of their computing on a tablet or phone.

Re:The iPad is not a truck (sorry Ted Stevens) (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 5 months ago | (#46901513)

The iPad sure couldn't replace a desktop, but the Surface Pro is getting pretty close. You can run 4 monitors [wpcentral.com] off the thing, and plug in a USB keyboard and mouse. You could also add a USB hard disk for extra storage. It could pretty much replace most people's desktop machines, an still act a very capable tablet when you want to bring it with you. It's a little on the pricey side right now, but if you don't need quite as much power, you can do similar stuff with Transformer T100, which has less power, and can only output to a single monitor, but can still run all your Windows programs. Once we're able to get enough power in a small enough form factor (I'd say we're already there), why do we need to have bulky desktop machines?

Re:The iPad is not a truck (sorry Ted Stevens) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901653)

This.
The ONLY way Tablets will ever take over desktops and laptops is if they themselves change a little.

1) connectivity - Get that shit connector to hell. USB ports. Mini or whatever. At least 2. And a hub along with it.
2) expandability - must be able to connect that USB hub to a monitor to allow the screen to be sent to it. An HDMI port could be on the hub too I guess.
Or maybe a separate IO hub / cable / hybrid that connects to it. In fact, a cable / hub hybrid would be more ideal since it would be more compact.
Think of a main cable that connects to the tablet with the ports over the middle of the wire, not popping out from the side, equally centered on the top of it, facing out one direction. That could even get rid of the need for an extra USB port. Hell, even headphones if the damn USB port was made as generic as possible and not that proprietary crap.
3) freedoms - full system access. I don't think anything else needs to be said here. Good security with regards to that obviously. Stupid-proofing that can be turned off completely, that won't render the system completely vulnerable, Microsoft! Stupid-proofing and security are two SEPARATE things.
4) Battery improvements - meanwhile 15 years later, batteries are still shit. Batteries are the biggest thing holding back portable systems. I even got a battery pack a couple weeks back. (cheap admittedly, but extra 5 hours is very worth it since I do webdev, drawing and rarely gaming when at friends or on holiday and I don't want to deal with having it plugged in)
5) better screens. This is exclusive from the battery point because extra power is NOT needed for this. But it seems Pixel Qi is still MIA in regards to their screens being everywhere, which are about the only decent screens in existence. I also wish the world would get over the shiny screen fetish already, it is literally worse than Hitler. It is so pointless, it provides NOTHING but annoyances. It should be banned, not even a decision that all companies agreed on, it should be banned outright, period, done, finished. Disgusting screens.
6) The app-model dying. It is awful. Single-tasking OSes are the worst when it comes to usefulness. The Samsung multi-app windowing system is so broken at times, but it works fairly well. The problem is they never wrote a good enough wrapper that handles the oddity of apps that use finger / stylus positions, or a decent scaling system for apps that have fixed position interfaces and stuff like that. It could be fixed with the right effort behind it. That will likely not happen.

Things that could also help:
1) graphene computing, optical computing, 3D processors, obviously quantum computing but lets forget that for now, the former 3 are actually within reach, quantum is still outside of being portable with regards to room-scales, never mind hands.
2) The app-model improving. While I said it should die above, if it was made less terrible, it would improve things considerably. Permissions need to be fixed on all systems. They are all awful. You should be able to revoke permissions easily and all devs should be told they shouldn't depend on having access to things or get the hell out of the market.

As a Samsung Note user (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901081)

I can write on my tablet like I write on a paper pad. I didn't use paper pad in meeting anymore.
My Note Case have a bt keyboard, when I need more formal word done
I don't have one office suite for my Note, I have a lot of them to choose from, each having better fonction and read/write standard office format
My Note is a smaller computer (but more powefull for business work) than any laptop outthere

So, the IPad problem, is maybe, Apple when it didn't want to eat itself let other eat it !

Re:As a Samsung Note user (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 5 months ago | (#46901459)

I just bought a Fission and am waiting to get my hands on the new Neutrino.

It's dead already (0)

greenwow (3635575) | about 5 months ago | (#46901101)

The only reason the OP claims it is dying is to try to convince us it isn't already dead. He has an obvious agenda. I don't think I've seen one of those iPad things in public in over a year. They were a fad that died-out a while ago.

Re:It's dead already (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 5 months ago | (#46901225)

I saw one yesterday. I had a guy in his 60s come over to me in the pub. Working class, non-geek. He saw I was using the internet on my laptop and asked how he could get his iPad on the WiFi. So I told him the AP and how to create an free account. It didn't work, I think because he pressed the wrong button on the web sign-up page. And then he wondered if it was because his old iPad was already registered.

These iPads are mass market.

Re:It's dead already (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | about 5 months ago | (#46901407)

Maybe you don't see them where you are, but they're out there. Have you not flown on a plane lately? Lots of people use them to entertain their kids with dumb movies. I had the misfortune of sitting next to some kid not too long ago while he was watching some stupid kids' movie starring Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson. What really sucked is that his mom was kinda hot, but for some reason she stuck her kid between us. I would have much preferred to sit next to her, and also not have his iPad and dumb movie directly in my field-of-view.

The Mac surpassed the Apple 2...by accident? (1)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | about 5 months ago | (#46901109)

>> by accident, just as the Mac eventually superseded the Apple II

Um...do you realize that the Mac was the benefit of one of the largest and most expensive marketing efforts aimed at personal computer (lower case) consumers of all time (at the time)? And that the marketing hype culminated in a famous 1984 Superbowl commercial? (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VtvjbmoDx-I)

That was no accident, my friend.

Re:The Mac surpassed the Apple 2...by accident? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901429)

Of course, the Mac also brought new capabilities to the table. Just as the iPad brings new capabilities to... well, the *table* isn't where it brings the capabilities, it brings them to the couch, the bus, the... pretty much every where *but* a table.

"Insightful" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901209)

> Ben Thompson had an insightful take on people demanding desktop functionality from the iPad: 'This sounds suspiciously like the recommendation that the only thing holding the Macintosh back was its inability to run Apple II programs.

Insightful, sure. Huh? What?

Default threshold is 2. 11 comments till now and not a single one makes the bar. Either the default is too high, no one has anything important to say or moderators have been too active. And that has been /. path in the recent years. If I register, my opinion suddenly gets relevant. Yeah, right.

Well, FWIW, a tablet is a laptop. Or rather, should be. Keyboards are a dime a dozen, it's cheap to have several, one at each place one uses to go. And eventually, we'll all get that projected laser keyboard thing, just like we got absurd mouses with cameras.

But tablets still can't run whatever OS and thus I haven't bought me one. I want Linux. Not any Linux (and Android is Linux IMHO), but an independent distribution (yeah, Ubuntu will do) -- I'd even buy that M$ monstrosity if it runs Linux better than those with Android. So that you know how much I want Linux.

It must have a micro/mini/normal HDMI output, so that I can use a TV-monitor (at home and work). Some things will be on the cloud, but not just one cloud... probably two or three, plus a personal cloud. One of these days, there will be a distribution solely for cloud servers, which a normal user can configure, just like it's not that hard to configure Squid. Slap a good mobile connection (I already got one with 6Mbps) and we're game...

That, of course, is my opinion and I have a lot of these (now and then /. invites me to go away saying I posted 10 times... aren't they nice?). But I believe some other guy thinks like that, so I started talking to see where things go.

Be my guest to give it -1, as usual. At this point, I'll complain if I get "insightful" here...

Who is surprised by this? (1, Interesting)

bobbied (2522392) | about 5 months ago | (#46901259)

I'm not surprised. Face it, Ipads are EXPENSIVE toys for most people buying them. Yea, it runs IOS like a lot of phones, but at what price?

Amazon has been selling their Kindle devices for a LOT less, given what you get for for the money. I'm not a Kindle zealot (I hate that they are totally locked down) but Apple needs to face the fact that there are now other options out there that do just about everything that IPad can and they are cheaper. Add to that the large scale adoption of Android in both the handset and tablet market (including the Kindle, under the covers) and it is clear that Apple's dominance of this market is over. What can apple do? Add memory, processor speed, flash and battery life? Maybe higher resolution display hardware but what's that worth if you cannot really see a difference? Apple is about done with the tablet, unless they can innovate into something else, but what? Their run is over.

Who is surprised by this? Apple is getting its clock cleaned by Android, which is a trend I don't see changing. Not to mention that Microsoft is pushing pretty hard to stay relevant in the market. This is the problem with being in first place, everybody is gunning for you and it takes serious innovation to keep ahead of the pack. It may not be time to be short selling apple, but if I owned this stock, I would certainly have standing stop orders in place around any major scheduled press conferences.

Re:Who is surprised by this? (1, Informative)

m.dillon (147925) | about 5 months ago | (#46901679)

The real joke here is that the inventory issue was explained in the conference call and anyone who bothered to read the actual source knows that ipad sales were actually down only 3% or so, and roughly flat across two months. The whole tablet space is flattening out but all that means is that Apple will start pulling more market share from Android just as it has been doing with the iphone... in the markets that matter that is. This is more junk like the 'world wide market share' crap that's proven to be such a bad predictor of Apple's business the last year.

Apple is "getting its clock cleaned by Android"? Only if you've had your head stuffed down a rabbit hole for the last 5 years. Helps those of us who actually spend a few minutes doing real research, I suppose, but I'm just flabbergasted at how little posters like you seem to know about Apple's business when you can literally find out with only a few keystrokes in a browser.

-Matt

The iPad isn't dead (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901357)

I completely agree with the fact that the tablet market is now saturated, and is the key to the slow down but isn't necessarily the only reason. Add the fact that this market is just starting to mature, and the tablet isn't just a niche product. Speaking from my own experience, my wife and I both own an iPad, we use them everyday, I would say that 70% of all my web surfing is now done on my iPad, and the rest is done on my phone or my laptop. I don't personally feel the need to upgrade every year, as it is a great piece of hardware and does exactly what I need it to do. My expectation from the iPad is that after the Apple Care warranty expires and when I break or it fails then I will look to upgrade to the newer. But by no means would I say that this is a bad for Apple, it just means that the metrics used to determine when people will upgrade need to be adjusted.

Mocking the "Post-PC era" (2, Interesting)

Scot Seese (137975) | about 5 months ago | (#46901363)

"Figuring Out the iPad's Place" ?

The bathroom. So you can browse while you download.

For years we've had snobbish hipster tech journalists gleefully informing us that we are now in the "Post-PC era", that our watt-hungry desktop dinosaurs are on the way out, that they are being replaced by a constellation of sexy, small gadgets like smartphones and tablets.

Except it isn't happening.

Every one of those goddamned articles was written on a laptop or desktop computer. You, fair reader, do your job or schoolwork on a laptop or desktop PC. The many limitations of tablets makes the idea of performing any meaningful work on them downright laughable.

I have an iPad Air and Zagg keyboard case for it. Toys. Both of them, toys. Poor keyboard experience meets poor word processing experience (unless having Lou Ferrigno sized deltoids from constant arm extension is your thing) meets horrendously poor multitasking meets a giant bucket of buyers remorse.

If I didn't really enjoy playing Hearthstone on my iPad Air, I would have eBayed it weeks ago. I rarely use it for anything else.

With factory refurb'd Macbook Airs popping up on Apple's "Special Deals" page now at $599 (when in stock), the argument for buying a $500 iPad Toy to play Angry Birds on the toilet and watch "Sherlock" on that flight to Denver to visit your in-laws just.. doesn't make good sense anymore, when for $100 more you can get a real computer.

So my operating theory is - Not only are people holding on to the tablets they already own, softening sales of new models, but they have also already discovered they're horrible to type on, make overweight poor quality e-readers, have games that you tire of after 1 hour and you feel no urgent need to run out and drop $500 on a new one that will only continue to do all those things poorly, but is a tiny bit thinner.

Smartphones are killing the PDA! (1)

0xdeadbeef (28836) | about 5 months ago | (#46901383)

This sounds suspiciously like the recommendation that the only thing holding the Macintosh back was its inability to run Apple II programs.

No, it's like the only thing holding back the Apple II is the inability to run Macintosh programs. The thing that does more still does more.

Tablets are great for leisure, but horrible for work. Touch screens are better for some activities, but are ridiculous for typing, and don't give the fine control of a mouse.

These moronic pundits need to stop pretending that every new thing is going to replace every old thing. Sometimes the new thing is really the old thing, and sometimes they just keep existing, side by side.

No, sales are *not* down. (4, Interesting)

Edgewize (262271) | about 5 months ago | (#46901389)

Apple specifically addressed this during their conference call. Sales are not down; if you look at two quarters combined, sales are flat or slightly up. Sales only appear to be down year-over-year because they had supply issues five quarters ago, which pushed sales from that quarter (which was low) into the start of the next quarter (which was high).

This is silly. (1)

jcr (53032) | about 5 months ago | (#46901391)

iPad sales are down because it's been quite a while since the last revision, and people tend to hold off their purchases if they think a new model's on the way.

-jcr

Price Problem (4, Insightful)

Moof123 (1292134) | about 5 months ago | (#46901433)

We have a couple iPads in our house, and I find myself resentful of the price to upgrade, so we haven't. The competitors are nearly as good, and cost half as much. The price points for more memory in particular outrages me. Why is anyone shipping a premium tablet starting at 16 GB of non-upgradeable storage these days!? How can you justify another $100 just to get to 32 GB?! 64 GB should be the starting point for tablets in Apple's target premium price range.

Earlier on I could understand the premium price, as the competition was simply nowhere near the polish and functionality. But the extra bells and whistles Apple has added just are not keeping pace compared to the premium they are still charging.

I long ago realized I was not in their target demographic for phone and PC sales, and now I think my next tablet is not likely to be an Apple one. Somehow they feel they are exempt from following the steady march downwards of electronics prices.

Heck I'd even be interested in shelling out extra for an iMac, but every time I check they are still not upgradeable, and come with rather underwhelming processors/memory/GPU considering the extreme markup.

Oh well.

Faulty reasoning. (1)

king neckbeard (1801738) | about 5 months ago | (#46901473)

Claiming that something has sold a lot doesn't say anything about whether or not it's a fad. Sudden, extreme popularity is a hallmark of fads. That's not to make a claim either way, but it certainly seems that the 'Post-PC era' is not quite as Tim Cook claimed it would be.

device or "brand" (1)

globaljustin (574257) | about 5 months ago | (#46901531)

ugh...TFA asks a potentially interesting question but they use all the wrong language and context to frame the question

the "iPad" is a touch-screen computer...so is the iPhone...same with Android touch screen phones and tablets

it's all small, thin computers of various dimensions with *touch screen interface* not a keyboard

another difference is **connectivity**

they can connect to WiFi, Bluetooth, "3g" cellular, "4g" cellular...some can do all...some a combination of

Kindle is another type...it has different specs and a special network (whispernet)...but it's *all the same*

so the difference is **connectivity**...not size or marketing function

that's where we have to start...now...what was the fsking question? how to sell more widgets? the "future" of a particular brand?

prediction: people will use computers and want then to be more portable and more capable

any questions?

The iPad's place? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901667)

You want to know the iPad's place? That is easy. Gazelle.com. Sell that paper weight and get an Android tablet or a PC.

It's Not a Fad (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46901671)

Because I just bought one.

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