Top 6 Reasons Why I'm Not Buying an iPad

Everyone is excited about the iPad, and that is to be expected. I’m excited too. I want the iPad to be great and to foster in a new class of device that hasn’t performed in the past.

That said, I’m not buying one, even if this thing is declared the greatest device ever invented.

Is it because I despise Apple products? Absolutely not. For the record, I own an iPod and a Macbook, and I also enjoy the thought and design that goes into Apple products. I have no qualms with Apple, beyond their sometimes restrictive policies towards application developers.

Furthermore, I believe the iPad has great potential — I’m sure it will be an amazing product that will win numerous “product-of-the-year” awards. But I’m still not buying one.

“But why then, James, are you not purchasing an iPad?”

There are six reasons, and I’m sure you are wanting to know what they are. So, without further ado, I present my reasoning for not purchasing an iPad.

It’s too expensive:

We were all shocked to learn about the price-tag of the Apple iPad: it is starting at $499. Great deal, right?

Wrong!

Just because this thing is priced dramatically less than what people expected, it does not mean it is a good deal. Sure, people will pay for expensive things, but when you consider the fact that you could own a powerful laptop computer at the same price of an iPad, it has to make you think.

Sure, supply and demand determine the value of something, but that doesn’t necessarily apply to Apple’s products in a strictly unbiased sense. Apple very well could have priced the iPad at around $200 if they wanted every American to have one of these tablets, and the company still would have made a profit on the hardware — not to mention the many digital third-party application, e-book, music, and video sales that will help make Apple billions of dollars.

It’s almost a guarantee that Apple will drop the price of these things by $100 next year and another $100 the year after. It’s a smart move by Apple, but this all doesn’t necessarily mean the best bang for your buck.

It’s a first-generation device:

Another issue is that the Apple iPad will be a first-generation device, and that means there will be problems. As a matter of fact, almost every single Apple product I can recall has had issues with the first iteration of the product — every single one. So why is the iPad going to be any different?

I can’t yet begin to imagine the amount of issues will be seeing: touch sensors going haywire, cracked screens from over-excited users, heating issues (especially while playing 3D games and HD video), and others will add to the pain of first-generationism.

Furthermore, there are likely to be software bugs as well: that is a given. Some of them will be more annoying than others, and they will probably take awhile to kill. So — even if I was willing to purchase one of these devices — I would at least wait a month or two to ensure that the products are well-built and are not having issues.

In other words: I’ll let everyone else be beta testers while I wait to purchase a better product.

It’s a heavy investment:

When you think about how much you are going to pay for the Apple iPad, I bet many of you didn’t consider the actual cost. And no, it isn’t going to be $499.

Want a few magazine subscriptions?  Tack on $30 a month. A few games? $20 a month. Some cool productivity applications? $15 a month. It adds up pretty quick.

The “wow” factor comes into play as well. New iPad applications are surely going to be priced higher than the regular iPhone/iPod Touch applications, and they might remain priced higher for a long time until that “wow” factor wears down a bit.

It could very will be over $1,000 for many people in the first year, not even considering 3G prices.

It’s got competition:

A fact that isn’t discussed as much as it should is that the iPad will have competition: this isn’t going to be like the iPod or iPhone that took the music and mobile industries by surprise.

Microsoft, Asus, Lenovo, HP, Dell, Google, and many others are ready to take on the iPad, and some of what these competitors are offering is very intriguing. Lenovo, for example, is offering a laptop that converts into a slate that is essentially two computers in one with the Ideapad U1 Hybrid. Google is surely going to appeal to many tablet manufacturers with Chrome OS and Android, which are certainly suitable competitors (especially Android, when considering how it is becoming quite popular and possibly stealing some market share from the iPhone). The Microsoft Courier also looks like a fantastic device for students and creative professionals. And all of them are competing on price as well.

Trust me when I say that there is going to be plenty of options come this Christmas, and iPad isn’t necessarily going to be the best product out of the bunch. It will, however, be the most highly praised — as fair or unfair as that is.

It’s a jumbo-sized iPod Touch:

Finally, I must say it: the iPad is an XXXL version of the iPod Touch.

Really, it isn’t that amazing, is it? Sure, it will be bringing with it a new book store, a powerful processor, and a huge touch screen, but — other than that — there isn’t much more to the iPad. It is a gigantic iPod Touch. It is not revolutionary in any sense, and that is all I will say about that.

So there you go.

Either way, the iPad is important to Apple because it brings people into their locked-down iTunes platform. It gives Apple all the control in the world, and they will essentially profit from everything: hardware, software, and support — it’s a triple threat.

From a business perspective, it is good that Apple created this device.

From a consumer perspective, though, I’m not quite as impressed.

However, I am well aware that I am in the minority — I am fine with that. In 2011, however, I might be happy to purchase an iPad.

For now, I’ll remain patient.

Written by James Mowery

James Mowery is a passionate technology journalist and entrepreneur who has written for various top-tier publications like Mashable and CMSWire. Follow him on Twitter: @JMowery.
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Comments
  • Djizeus

    Couldn’t agree more…
    The – extremely – boring video says it loud and clear: the iPad is mainly “the best experience” to sell anything (you didn’t know) you wanted at an expensive price.
    Plus you should actualy count more than $499 in the first place, since you’ll most probably end up buying a 64GB version, would it be just to store all these ebooks, movies and such. And also probably throw another 130 box for the 3G “(3G data plan sold separately.)” to it, just to make sure you get the same experience than with your iPhone.

    But what’s really bugging me with the iPad is that it’s not even close to deliver what he promises. The best web interface in the world? Without a goddam webcam?! To start with, forget taking the pictures you’re supposed to enjoy watching so much. But also, forget chatroulette, facebook’s mobile uploads, skype’s video conversations, or uploading your videos on youtube. It’s made to use Apple’s stuff, period. This is the biggest fail they’ve done EVER.

    I must say that I own an iPod, a MacBook, and an iMac. I usualy love Apple, but this time I’m sure she only wants me for my money.
    That revolution will happen without me :)

  • http://onlyjames.com/ jamesmowery

    @Djizeus

    Great point about the 64GB version and data storage.

    Also, have we all forgotten that Apple won’t even offer removable storage for this thing? How crazy is that?

    And all valid points about the lack of Flash and no Webcam. The iPad would have been great fun to have video chats via Skype or a dedicated iPad application.

    I’m sure these are features we will see next year, but it would have been nice to have them now.

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