image You’ve heard of the Kindle as a media savior. The Apple tablet as one?

“The tablet represents an opportunity to renew the romance between printed material and consumer,” says New York Times media critic David Carr. “Think of sitting in your living room, in your bed or on a plane with a publication you really adore nestled into your lap. Since print was first conceived, people have had an intimate relationship with the text, touching, flipping and paging back and forth…

“I haven’t been this excited about buying something since I was 8 years old and sent away for the tiny seahorses I saw advertised in the back of a comic book.”

The TeleRead take: One issue is whether people will buy pay for usability and convenience—just the right form factor and other ergonomics. That question is still unsettled in hard to the hardware itself.

If nothing else, we don’t know if Apple will try to lock in customers, Amazon fashion. Will it try associate content purchases with a certain device—its own. Will that be the way to get people to pay for what is now free on the Web, just as some cellphone users will pay?

As far as newspapers and magazines, the Kindle hasn’t made it yet. Even on the book side, the Kindle  still has a way to go. But perhaps the color screen, a spiffy interface and other refinements in the Apple tablet will do the trick. Hard to say.

Related: The latest collection of rumors written by John Gruber and recommended  by Feedbooks’ Hadrien Gardeur. Apple-ology, of course, is Silicon’s cousin of the old Kremlinology.