I Won't iPad, You Can't Make Me

The arrival of Apple's iPad, the Moses tablet to their Jesus iPhone, is being treated with near-religious fervor but this otherwise early adapter tech geek is left wondering, "Is that all?"

Over the years, I have happily been a gadget geek and early adopter driven on the fantasy tech I saw in comic books, science fiction and James Bond flicks. However, while much of the news and blogging media are covering it as the biggest delivery of a tablet since Moses brought his down from Sinai, I’ll be sitting out the iPad launch on 3 April.

Although the arrival of the Moses tablet, Apple’s netbookish progeny of its “Jesus phone”, is being treated with near-religious fervor, it’s the first time I’m not salivating over a new electronic hotness. I didn’t pre-order and won’t be standing in line to pick one up, and even if I won’t turn away a free one, I’m not all that interested in it because Apple has both consistently overwhelmed and underwhelmed me over the years.

The iPad should be the 21st century realization of the 24th century’s Personal Access Display Device, or PADD, that Captain Picard rocked on the NCC 1701-D in Star Trek: The Next Generation. Actually, the iPad name only escapes comparison to feminine hygiene products because of the PADD (Methinks the folks at Apple overestimated how many people would get their little nod to Trek when they came up with the name).

In a way, Apple already gave us the PADD. The iPhone was a miniature blessing and made touch screen smartphones an accessible reality. The first generation iPhone changed the way I view mobile tech, and the second and third gens changed it further. Making calls became the least used option on my phone, and I became immersed in constant email, browsing, Doodle Jump and Pocket God.

Indeed, there is a “been there, done that” vibe coming off the iPad. While bigger, the iPad doesn’t do much more than the iPhone does. In fact, it does less since the tablet doesn’t even have a camera (forget about the wished-for front-facing cams; this doesn’t even have an eye on the backend). That gives the new pad a less rad appeal since it makes me ask, "Is that all?" It looks cool and shiny at only one and a half pounds, but like its little sibling, still doesn’t support Flash, multitasking, or feature a removable battery (sometimes a ten-hour charge still isn’t enough).

This is where Apple’s track record of quality is actually a detriment to the iPad for me. The funny thing about my world being changed by the iPhone was that I kept expecting more. With gadgets, we expect a revolution routinely. I want to be blown away, but was left wanting more because Apple has done it before – and because the technology is surely available.

Plus, when the consumers, even gluttonous gadget ones like me, start to suspect Apple is holding out just so they can roll out a new batch of goodies every year, they may be less likely to upgrade as regularly. Already The Wall Street Journal is reporting the fourth-gen iPhone to be announced this summer will feature the aforementioned multitasking and front-face cam, a faster processor and – finally – a Verizon model that would put an end to the AT&T exclusivity deal. This is after I’ve already picked up three full-price phones over three years.

So I’m left wondering why I should shell out for an iPad now, when a better version will hit in less than a year. Perhaps instead of just being inspired to be a gadget geek, there’s another lesson I could have learned from those comic books and science fiction movies: Wait long enough, and there’s always a sequel with better tech and more special effects.






'Bigger Than History: Why Archaeology Matters'

On everything from climate change to gender identity, archaeologists offer vital insight into contemporary issues.


DYLYN Dares to "Find Myself" by Facing Fears and Life's Dark Forces (premiere + interview)

Shifting gears from aspiring electropop princess to rock 'n' rule dream queen, Toronto's DYLYN is re-examining her life while searching for truth with a new song and a very scary-good music video.


'Avengers: Endgame' Culminates 2010's Pop Culture Phenomenon

Avengers: Endgame features all the expected trappings of a superhero blockbuster alongside surprisingly rich character resolutions to become the most crowd-pleasing finalés to a long-running pop culture series ever made.


Max Richter's 'VOICES' Is an Awe-Inspiring and Heartfelt Soundscape

Choral singing, piano, synths, and an "upside-down" orchestra complement crowd-sourced voices from across the globe on Max Richter's VOICES. It rewards deep listening, and acts as a global rebuke against bigotry, extremism and authoritarianism.


JOBS Make Bizarre and Exhilarating Noise with 'endless birthdays'

Brooklyn experimental quartet JOBS don't have a conventional musical bone in their body, resulting in a thrilling, typically off-kilter new album, endless birthdays.


​Nnamdï' Creates a Lively Home for Himself in His Mind on 'BRAT'

Nnamdï's BRAT is a labyrinth detailing the insular journey of a young, eclectic DIY artist who takes on the weighty responsibility of reaching a point where he can do what he loves for a living.


Monte Warden and the Dangerous Few Play It Cool​

Austin's Monte Warden and the Dangerous Few perform sophisticatedly unsophisticated jazz/Americana that's perfect for these times


Eleanor Underhill Takes Us to the 'Land of the Living' (album stream)

Eleanor Underhill's Land of the Living is a diverse album drawing on folk, pop, R&B, and Americana. It's an emotionally powerful collection that inspires repeated listens.


How Hawkwind's First Voyage Helped Spearhead Space Rock 50 Years Ago

Hawkwind's 1970 debut opened the door to rock's collective sonic possibilities, something that connected them tenuously to punk, dance, metal, and noise.


Graphic Novel 'Cuisine Chinoise' Is a Feast for the Eyes and the Mind

Lush art and dark, cryptic fables permeate Zao Dao's stunning graphic novel, Cuisine Chinoise.


Alanis Morissette's 'Such Pretty Forks in the Road' Is a Quest for Validation

Alanis Morissette's Such Pretty Forks in the Road is an exposition of dolorous truths, revelatory in its unmasking of imperfection.


Hip-Hop's Raashan Ahmad Talks About His Place in 'The Sun'

On his latest work,The Sun, rapper Raashan Ahmad brings his irrepressible charisma to this set of Afrobeat-influenced hip-hop.


Between the Buried and Me's Baby Pictures Star in 'The Silent Circus'

The Silent Circus shows Between the Buried and Me developing towards the progressive metal titans they would eventually become.


The Chad Taylor Trio Get Funky and Fiery on 'The Daily Biological'

A nimble jazz power trio of drums, tenor sax, and piano, the Chad Taylor Trio is free and fun, funky and fiery on The Daily Biological.


Vistas' 'Everything Changes in the End' Is Catchy and Fun Guitar Rock

Vistas' debut, Everything Changes in the End, features bright rock music that pulls influences from power-pop and indie rock.


In Amy Seimetz's 'She Dies Tomorrow', Death Is Neither Delusion Nor Denial

Amy Seimetz's She Dies Tomorrow makes one wonder, is it possible for cinema to authentically convey a dream, or like death, is it something beyond our control?


Maestro Gamin and Aeks' Latest EP Delivers LA Hip-Hop Cool (premiere + interview)

MaestroAeks' Sapodigo is a collection of blunted hip-hop tunes, sometimes nudging a fulsome boom-bap and other times trading on laid-back, mellow grooves.


Soul Blues' Sugaray Rayford Delivers a "Homemade Disaster" (premiere + Q&A)

What was going to be a year of touring and building Sugaray Rayford's fanbase has turned into a year of staying home and reaching out to fans from his Arizona home.

Collapse Expand Reviews

Collapse Expand Features
PM Picks
Collapse Expand Pm Picks

© 1999-2020 All rights reserved.
PopMatters is wholly independent, women-owned and operated.