Well don’t I feel stupid. After my first day of frustration with my new iPad (resulting in my previous ranting post) I now find myself besotted with this silly little toy. What started out as “an over priced etch-a-sketch” has morphed into something that you will have to prise from my cold dead hands. Seriously.
For me, it’s a bigger u-turn than the Lib Dems on tuition fees – a real Damascene conversion. So what, you may ask, brought this about? Well, I’m still annoyed about everything I was annoyed about in my original post and am also £30 poorer for having bought a case. BUT – now I have apps! I love apps and I’m pretty sure they love me. The apps are what changes this thing from being an over priced, over hyped piece of poo into something really quite useful. Under the expert guidance of my ever patient IT team in Brussels, I’ve managed to VPN into our corporate network, I can take remote control of critical servers and I can access our SAP ERP and CRM systems. On top of that, I can also access our intranet, post on it, stream video from it, do my expenses and book vacation time.
Once I had convinced myself I could actually do some work with it, I then realsied what a fun device it would be to have around when I’m travelling. Don’t get me wrong, I love my HTC Desire and its Android OS and for the last few months, it has allowed me to work, play games and watch movies without having to break out the laptop (which fits on about 0.01% of airline tray tables). But now, I have a bigger, higher quality screen with better built in sound (for when I don’t need to use a headset) and thanks to the recent release of VLC for iPad, I can watch pretty much any format I like.
Now, before any of my friends start buying me cravats or black polo neck sweaters for Christmas, I must reiterate that I have not become an Apple Fanboy – I just love the iPad. I will not be changing our corporate policy to buy Mac. I will never buy an iPod nor will I use an iPhone or swap my Windows laptop for a Macbook. iTunes sucks and I still believe that Steve Jobs’s greatest achievement is to disguise corporate extorsion as product marketing. But this one thing has been done very well. I am sure that Android devices be out soon that will surpass the iPad in terms of openess and freedom but in this very particular niche, the iPad rules. Companies like the one I work for in the Financial/IT sector are adopting this device like crazy for their frontline staff. Now I can see why. For sales people, having something that is functional but also cool is a big plus and in this area, no one does cool quite like Apple (also no one does over priced either but let’s not go there today).
We finish testing with this device soon but I am already convinced I won’t be handing it back. The challenge I have been given now by my team is to try and use it in place of my laptop for the next 3 days. Should be fun!