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Handhelds Portables Apple

iPad Progress Report 374

Posted by kdawson
from the floor-wax-and-dessert-topping dept.
Now that the 300,000 early adopters have had a few days to play and work with their iPads, we're moving beyond the "first impressions" articles (but here's a video of a 2-1/2-year-old's first encounter with the device). The detailed reviews aren't out yet. The largest source of early complaints is a complex of problems with Wi-Fi reception. Apple has posted a technical support note implicitly acknowledging the problems and suggesting some work-arounds — specifically, changing SSIDs or encryption methods on base stations that offer both 2.4-GHz and 5.8-GHz signals. Finally, here's a detailed look at the gratuitous pain Apple imposes on those desiring to get iWork files transferred from and to the iPad.
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iPad Progress Report

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  • Re:early adaptor? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Trepidity (597) <delirium-slashdot AT hackish DOT org> on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @03:41PM (#31752796)

    I think the grandparent post was commenting on kdawson using "early adapter" instead of "early adopter" in the post. Presumably, an early adapter is someone who is among the first to adapt to the revolutionary new world that the Jesus Tablet brings us.

  • by Animats (122034) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @03:45PM (#31752866) Homepage

    Doing anything with documents on an iPad sounds awful. You apparently have to "sync" with a Mac using iTunes. In any business environment, you'd want to talk to some server.

    Apparently the iPad is incompatible with Google Docs, although this may just be a bug.

  • Re:Wi-Fi problems (Score:3, Insightful)

    by alphax45 (675119) <kyle@alfred.gmail@com> on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @03:46PM (#31752888)
    The problem is that you shouldn't have to buy another device so that your iPad works with a router that everything else works with. It really seems like something is wrong with the Wi Fi in the iPad..
  • Probably not 300k (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Luthair (847766) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @03:58PM (#31753072)
    According to PCWorld [pcworld.com], the Apple press release citing 300k units is including those sold to Bestbuy, which is of course entirely different from the number of units sold by Bestbuy.
  • Re:early adaptor? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by cabjf (710106) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @04:04PM (#31753138)
    So that 2 1/2 year old would be both an early adopter and an early adapter.
  • Why buy this junk? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Billly Gates (198444) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @04:06PM (#31753174) Journal

    Before I become modded down to an oblivion, I would like to point out that on an Asus AEEE or even on a XO I can run abiword or openoffice and have a FULL OS with REAL software that is used by the rest of the world on desktops. Not a DRMed cell phone os with large amounts of resources being used to lock me into a jail with specifically designed office apps that have been made crippled.

    I was hoping to run MacOSX when I heard Apple was going to make a sub netbook. Instead it reminds me of WinCE where Microsoft got together to purposedly cripple as much possible.

    The tabled is not a computer but a device ... a big IPhone with the phone part disabled.

    I am waiting for HPs tablet. I hope it runs Windows and I can put any app I want on it.

  • Re:No problem. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cabjf (710106) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @04:06PM (#31753176)
    You must not have dealt with IBM in a business setting much. They practically invented vendor lock in.
  • Re:On the 2.5 YO (Score:3, Insightful)

    by stimpleton (732392) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @04:07PM (#31753198)
    This is slashdot so you are forgiven....so I'll paste the first sentence for you:

    "My iPhone-savvy 2.5 year-old daughter held an iPad for the very first time last night, and it turned out to be an interesting user-interface experiment."
  • by ProppaT (557551) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @04:15PM (#31753284) Homepage

    I'm not really bothered by the 300k number. I'm sure there's nearly that many Apple zealots waiting to get their hands on one to begin with. What I'm curious about is how many of those 300k people are people who are just going to buy the next Apple gadget on launch day vs. those who bought it out of genuine interest. Also, I'm curious if this will drive up the sales of iPod Touches when people go out to get an iPad but realize they can save a few hundred dollars and basically have the same functionality + portability. Personally, I hope it flops...we don't need Apple dictating, shaping, and propriatizing yet another format...but that's just an off topic rant.

  • by UnknowingFool (672806) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @04:24PM (#31753406)

    It sure seems strange to me that Apple, who sell themselves as the "complete" and "it just works" experience would release the iPad before the next version of iPhoneOS comes out. This sounds like the kind of giant pay-to-beta-test sort of thing that Apple is known for NOT doing.

    Think about that. Apple released a new product on an older but proven OS. iPhone OS 3.2 is a version of iPhone OS specifically modified for iPad. It was released in beta back in Jan 2010. You're advocating that they should have released a brand new product on a new, unproven OS (4.0 which hasn't been released outside of Apple yet). Sounds like Apple is trying to avoid the beta-testing you're accusing them of doing.

    Also this week they will announce/release the beta version of 4.0 to developers. It will be at least a few months after release before the OS moves from beta to final. That would have to delay the launch of iPad for a few more months.

  • root (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jDeepbeep (913892) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @04:31PM (#31753542)
    It's a sad day when getting root on my own device is considered 'hacking'
  • by rolfwind (528248) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @04:34PM (#31753592)

    See, actually, I do want a device and not yet another computer. Why? Well, less maintenance for one. Also, being instant on is nice (on computers you just don't get a weeks worth of standby on a battery). And without a keyboard, it is a better ereader. I like the whole concept.

    You make it sound like a bad thing that Apple didn't come out with another netbook like the rest. I understand the desire for something cheaper than their current models, but I have to think the whole anticipation of Apple slaughtering it's own higher-end models in the race towards the bottom was naive. Plus there are plenty of subnotebooks (not netbooks, but close) which you can turn into a hackintosh. Otherwise Apple's 13" has to do.

    This doesn't excuse the design flaws of the current iPad. I'll wait till the second or third generation myself.

  • Re:No problem. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jpmorgan (517966) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @04:49PM (#31753790) Homepage

    Except how many Macs these days have user replacable graphics cards for example?

  • Re:The baby (Score:5, Insightful)

    by moonbender (547943) <moonbender@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @04:56PM (#31753888)

    Literally nobody who's interested in buying an iPad will be surprised that the other side does not contain a second screen (or a second iPad) -- don't be ridiculous. And saying that it's designed to "look like" some MS vaporware product that nobody has ever heard of so far is just as silly. I'd say the case looks a bit odd to me, plasticky; but I've never been one for protective cases, anyway.

  • by jedidiah (1196) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @05:02PM (#31753942) Homepage

    Nonsense.

    There is very little barrier to running whatever OS you want to on your Mac. The fact that the "BIOS" allows for this is not different from the fact that the BIOS on any other PC supports booting up Windows, Linux, FreeBSD or Solaris.

    A Mac comes with what you need to get it running something other than MacOS.

    That's a bit different from needing to hack the device in some way to achieve this (ipod, appletv).

    Although once you hack an AppleTV you will see that it too is pretty much just a PC.

    The only reason I don't have more Macs running Linux is that the PC market in general caught up and now the price and feature advantages of a mini aren't there anymore. This will happen with tablets too soon enough. Although the ipad will gain a lot more traction by that time when compared to minis.

    It's not really accurate to call Apple a computer company anymore...

  • Yes, hacking. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by RulerOf (975607) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @05:19PM (#31754202)
    I understand your sentiment, but it very likely is hacking, particularly in the purest sense of the word.

    So, in true Slashdot spirit:

    It's a sad day when getting root on my own device requires 'hacking'

    FTFY.

  • by GaryPatterson (852699) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @05:20PM (#31754210)

    You deserve to be modded down for that tripe.

    Bootcamp exists only to help Windows play nicely with an installed OS X. You can simply erase the hard drive and install either Windows or Linux as a fresh install and never touch Apple software again.

    The rest of your post is just inane trolling, and not worth commenting.

  • by Altus (1034) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @05:22PM (#31754242) Homepage

    Plus this will give them a chance to see what other things might be missing from the iPad OS and fix those issues in version 4.0 of the OS.

  • by Bing Tsher E (943915) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @05:22PM (#31754244) Journal

    No, you are contractually obligated to run Apple OSes on 'Apple Branded hardware.'

    When I bought my iPod Touch, it came with several Apple stickers in the box that solve that problem. Apple has been putting those Apple Stickers in the box with their products for decades. I think I have some from the 90's Mac era.

    Slap the label on your clone box. You're set!

  • by VendingMenace (613279) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @05:26PM (#31754312)

    Where have I heard about that before?

    The future is now :)

  • by shaper (88544) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @06:01PM (#31754840) Homepage

    Sometimes Apple has a period of greatness and then they have a period of... well, not so greatness. Maybe it is time again?

    Apple sold 300,000 iPads on the first day. Their market cap just passed Wal-Mart making them the 3rd most valuable company traded in US markets, behind only Microsoft and Exxon-Mobil. Regardless of particular views on the merits of the iPhone or the iPad, they are re-defining their markets and forcing competitive innovation just by their very existence. This is almost by definition a "great" period for a company.

  • Re:The baby (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Lunix Nutcase (1092239) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @06:11PM (#31754980)

    How is selling ~300,000 units in one day disappointing?

  • by macs4all (973270) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @06:40PM (#31755302)

    I have no idea what the problem actually was either, but lets assume its a defect of the router software. Even if that's the case the fault is still on the macbook, in my opinion. The windows PCs worked. The Mac could have been programmed so that it worked too.

    Even if the actual defect was the router software, the Mac should have coped with it.

    You do realize, of course, that many peripheral manufacturers not only test against Windows ONLY; but also silently program around bugs in Microsoft's implementations of standards in general.

    Apple is absolutely correct to follow the published standard to the letter. Afterall, isn't that why it's called a STANDARD?

  • as a means of ranking one company against another. Or did we learn nothing from Enron and Worldcom? Look instead at sales, at product diversification, licensing and pipelines, and at past performance relative to market performance in terms of alpha/beta. Back in the early 1980s, when Apple launched the Lisa/Mac and Microsoft was launching Windows 1.0, Apple's employee number, market cap *and* sales were literally hundreds of times larger than Microsoft's at that time. Look where they went, and where they are now.

  • by vux984 (928602) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @08:15PM (#31756262)

    You do realize, of course, that many peripheral manufacturers not only test against Windows ONLY; but also silently program around bugs in Microsoft's implementations of standards in general.

    Quite aware.

    Apple is absolutely correct to follow the published standard to the letter.

    In most situations yes, I would agree. However in any situation where one (e.g. Apple) is deploying your minority of hardware into an established environment, the onus falls on them to ensure their hardware works in that environment.

    Afterall, isn't that why it's called a STANDARD?

    In an ideal world sure. In the world in which I live I can update the firmware in my Mac so that it copes with a flawed router at starbucks or my hotel or a clients office, I can't update the firmware at starbucks, the hotel, or a clients office.

    My laptop is only valuable and useful if it works in these places. And so far, its been pretty hit and miss. So far, I've had to replace my home router to satisfy my newest mac; I had to downgrade a friends mac from snow leopard back to leopard so that it would work on an office network he did not control, and I've had to suffer through unbearable internet at a hotel on multiple occasions, while my wifes pc worked flawlessly.

    Finally, all this assumes Apple actually followed the standard and its all these vendors with horrific buggy systems. Quite bluntly, Apple is not perfect, and it would be absurd to presume they got everything right, and its all these other vendors who keep getting it wrong. Some of the technical blame lies at apples feet.

    And some of the blame that genuinely lies at the feet of other vendors COULD be resolved by Apple if it were so inclined. And it SHOULD take ownership of solving these issues when it can. Customers want laptops that 'just work'; that's what they keep promising.

    And above all, in my experience, a lot of the problems could be resolved within a subset of the standard. Often a standard specifies behavior X, and a device doesn't implement this properly, and windows isn't affected because it never requests behavior X. If that's the case, Apple could make their software work too with all these devices, by simply avoiding feature X. Note that by doing this Apple would STILL be following the standard to the letter.

  • Re:The baby (Score:2, Insightful)

    by pastafazou (648001) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @08:29PM (#31756366)
    300,000 units is a significant quantity for an initial release. Comparing it to the release of the iPhone or the iPod, the numbers are much larger for the iPad. Now look at the numbers the iPod and iPhone are doing years later, and you can guess that the iPad is going to be a pretty successful platform.
  • Re:The baby (Score:5, Insightful)

    by LynnwoodRooster (966895) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @10:28PM (#31757144) Journal
    They didn't sell 300,000 units in one day, or even one weekend. They sold 300,000 on 4 months of constant hype and reporting, and finally completed those sales in one weekend.
  • by vux984 (928602) on Tuesday April 06, 2010 @11:12PM (#31757386)

    I'm no fanboi, but I would hazard a guess that the issues you encountered were because the Mac followed the spec more precisely than the Windows boxes.

    Look, I'm a /. reader. The router I had to replace to satisfy my new Macbook Pro worked fine for years. It was fine with my XP box, my fathers dell laptop with Vista, my toshiba laptop running ubuntu, and the unit I was running the Windows 7 beta on. It also ran fine with my Nintendo Wii and my wife's blackberry. (I have an iphone, but I don't use its wifi since I have far more data via 3G than I need, so I have wifi off.)

    But no, your probably right, the reason the Mac choked up and constantly lost connection was that it "followed the spec more closely" than all these other units, several of which are not even based on windows. ;)

    I honestly believe you when you say your no fanboi, but when you have a set of disparate devices that all work together fine, and then you add a new device in and the new device doesn't work, frankly its absurd to presume as your default starting point that the new device "must follow the specs better".

  • by vux984 (928602) on Wednesday April 07, 2010 @06:03PM (#31768158)

    even when all you have to do is update the router firmware so that it follows the standard again while still working with Windows.

    "all you have to do is" ??

    Let ME get this straight. All I have to do is update the router firm ware at the airport / hotel / starbucks / client site / friends house / etc...? Easy as pie right, I'm sure they'll all just let me update the firmware on their equipment to get my obviously 'perfect mac' working. Easy as pie. In fact, I'm surprised I still have issues... you'd think the last guy to visit any of these places with a mac would have already fixed it...

    Did you read what I wrote before posting? Did you read what YOU wrote before posting?

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