Rich Adin at An American Editor says he won’t buy a tablet in the near future, partly because of the walled garden approach enforced by Apple, and partly for utilitarian reasons:

My “no” came about for various reasons, not least of which is that I really dislike Steve Jobs telling me what compromises I have to make. For me, the lure of the PC/Microsoft world has always been that, with the exception of the operating system, I have choices — and lots of them.


I do know someone who bought a tablet and loves it. But when I asked him how it stacks up to his older laptop, it is like I burst his bubble of enthusiasm with a pinprick. What he keeps pointing to are the “cool” factor, the weight difference, and how much he loves the touchscreen. Not a word about how the tablet actually helps him accomplish anything.

Personally, I’ve found the iPad to actually be better than any laptop or tower when it comes to certain types of drawing and photo manipulation, and it makes a wonderfully portable writing device when I’m not at home. But even those two benefits come with issues: I can’t always produce artwork at a print-quality resolution, and if I don’t have a Bluetooth keyboard on hand then the writing experience is dismal.

Read Adin’s full argument at An American Editor.

(Photo: liewcf)


  1. To be clear: Rich’s article said that IN THE PAST, he hadn’t bought a tablet due to iPad being essentially the only game in town, and Apple’s business decisions. Today, the decision has little to do with Apple, as there are many tablets, but everything to do with utilitarian issues. He does have a good point in that, if you plan to do with your tablet the same things as you can do with your laptop or smartphone, there’s little point in getting a tablet. The catch is in considering how well your laptop or smartphone do the same task: If they don’t do it well, or if a tablet can do it much better, you have justification for a tablet. For instance, I read ebooks on my smartphone, and I wanted to read digital magazines too… but my smartphone would do that job horribly. So a Nook Color readily solved the problem and became my new reading device. As usual, everyone should go with what works for them.

  2. I use my iPad primarily for reading. But for me, reading is VERY important. I read EVERYWHERE. I use iBooks for book and manuals, I read Kindle books, I use MobileRSS for News, Instapaper for saved articles, and Zite and Flipboard for general news. I also use the pad for mail, notes, to-dos, online training and videos, conferencing, and as an always open reference screen. It’s true that I can’t use the iPad for development, but Xcode won’t run on the silly thing anyway. (grin) The iPad isn’t a replacement for a laptop (or desktop). But it is an extremely valuable adjunct to one.

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