Why the iPad is not “just” an oversized iPod touch

You walk into Apple Store one day and are thinking about spending your hard earned $500; your interest is directed towards the brand new iPad, but then you remember what your friend said: “it’s just an oversized iPod Touch”. Being the owner of both the iPhone and the iPod touch, this raises questionable concerns

Comparing the iPad to the iPhone is like comparing coffee and tea
The iPhone and the iPad both run on iPhone OS — an operating system that is optimized for multitouch interaction. Personally, I see nothing wrong with taking something that works and then improving it. However for the skeptics, here are some improvements that were done to iPad’s iPhoneOS:

  • Better Music Management. You know have an iTunes-like music manager right on the iPad (Click for image)
  • Better safari browser.Safari is arguably changed the least from its predecessor. However the bigger screen, better bookmark support makes it a better successor (Click for image)
  • QuickTime browser. Quicktime videos now have the option of playing right in the browser instead of opening fullscreen.  (Greets to wyndwarrior for finding that out) (Click for image)

The iPhone OS 3.1.3 (iPhone/iPod Touch) is approximately 250 MB. iPhone OS 3.2 (iPad), reportedly, is almost twice that: approximately 450 MB. One would think that this big difference is due to the amount of features that are packed into the OS. Among these new features are:

  • Popovers- floating screen that help you interact with the application
  • Splitviews – two side by side screens can now be used
  • External Display Support – the iPad can now be connected to another screen and that screen can be used to display content
  • Custom Font Support
  • File-Sharing Support – if file-sharing is enabled, all one has to do is plugin the iPad into your computer and the shared contents will appear
  • Landscape springboard support

Bigger means Better
The iPad is literally bigger than the iPhone in many aspects:

  • Better Battery Life.  Although the iPhone 3GS and the iPad battery life is similar (9-10 hours), since the iPad uses a bigger screen and still manages to keep the same battery life, I assume it has a better battery
  • Bigger processor. iPhone’s 600 mhz (underclocked) vs the iPad’s 1 GHZ. Expect better apps  (keynote, numbers, pages, iBook)
  • Better Graphics Chip, this hasn’t been confirmed, but I suspect that with an upgrade to the CPU, the iPad will receive an upgrade to the GPU
  • Bigger Screen. Self explanatory: iPhone’s 3.5 inches vs iPad’s 9.7 inches

and of course with all that comes a bigger price :P

The Nitty Gritty
But William — iPadIMO users cry, you haven’t given us the a foolproof reason that seperate the two! What seperates your Macbook from just any other laptop? What seperates the iPhone from just any other phone?

What most people are confusing is that they are thinking that the iPad is an extension of the iPod line. Like the different gens of iPod nanos. Sure the shape changes, but the functionality is the same. Big misconception. The iPad is the start of a new line of tablet-devices from Apple. (I personally believe that the iPod touch was the testing ground for the iPad). The iPad welcomes new users and will amaze them with a full-fledged functional multitouch tablet. The iPad also welcomes experienced users, you will be amazed at how easy it is to do things you previously thought were hard to do

I welcome the similarities between the two: it is much easier to perfect an already existing formula, then create a new one that will rival the old one

So the next time you are in the Apple Store, feeling that gut feeling — go for it, buy that iPad. If it’s still available

Post a response / What do you think?