Five reasons the iPad will fail in Australia


opinion Like many of you reading this article, I got up at a ridiculous hour of the morning on January 28 to witness the public birth of the latest fruit of Steve Jobs’ fertile mind. I speak, of course, of the iPad.

Since that time there has been countless debate about how Apple’s latest device will fare in Australia when it hits our shores in late May. What kind of mobile access plans will telcos like Telstra and Optus launch to support it? We don’t know. How much will it sell for? We don’t know. How big will the catalogue of iBooks in Australia be? Again, we don’t know.

If you’re detecting a trend here, it’s because we don’t know much. Gizmodo might be leaking Apple news in the US left right and centre (hello, next-generation iPhone), but in Australia it’s rare that any real nugget of information escapes the company’s all-encompassing reality distortion machine.

There’s just not enough information yet to know whether the iPad will succeed or fail yet in Australia. But here’s five reasons why it might.

1. The need to sign up for an additional mobile plan

Unlike the iPhone, you won’t be able to make calls on your iPad. But if you want to be able to browse the web and work on your emails when you’re away from your home or work Wi-Fi networks, you’ll need to sign up for an additional monthly mobile plan. If you already have a mobile phone plan and a 3G data plan for your laptop, you might not be that keen on your wallet getting hit again each month.

So far there has been no indication that Australian telcos will offer a bundle package where your iPad data costs could simply come out of a merged plan with your mobile. Instead, they appear to be treating the device as just another laptop-style 3G device that will connect to their networks and suck up expensive data.

2. The Australian technology tax

Many technology vendors charge Australians significantly higher prices for the same products than US residents. Apple has been guilty of this over the years — the US$199 iPhone 3GS (on a 24 month plan) ended up costing Australians significantly more.

The iPad starts at US$499 in the US, with the top-end model going for US$829. When the Australian technology tax is applied, you can expect to be paying more than a grand for that top-flight edition — more than some laptops. And the low-end models will likely go for $600 or more.

At US$279 for the international edition, Amazon’s Kindle begins to look competitive. Do you really need a colour screen if you just want to read eBooks?

3. The predicted lack of Australian iBooks

Speaking of eBooks, Apple has been decidedly reticent about disclosing whether and to what extent its iBookstore application will be available in Australia when the iPad launches here. Although it has advertised for an an executive to manage the provision of iBooks (Apple’s name for eBooks) locally, it can be expected that it will take several years for the company to negotiate the complex international book publishing agreements that still hamstring the sale of eBooks in the Australian market.

4. The smaller Australian publishing market

Internationally, newspapers and magazines such as the New York Times have been going ga-ga over the potential for the iPad to rejuvenate their print revenue models — which are shrinking as consumers gradually migrate to digital offerings.

But in Australia, there is a vastly reduced publishing market compared with the US, with much smaller numbers of newspapers and magazines. Sure, large publishers such as the ABC and News Corporation (publisher of The Australian) will roll out iPad applications. And even smaller publications such as SmartCompany are eyeing off the device.

But ultimately there likely won’t be enough publishers using the device to incentivise vast numbers of Australians to migrate to the platform. Will we see massive Australian magazines like Women’s Day on the iPad? Probably not.

5. Existing competition and apathy

Don’t get me wrong. There isn’t really much existing competition in Australia when it comes to the iPad — at least on paper. There are various Windows-based tablet PCs (usually used in hospitals) and there is the Amazon Kindle and other eBook readers, which are seeing steady adoption.

But, of course the iPad does so much more than the Kindle — and its user interface and form factor is dramatically better than existing tablets. The real competition for the iPad comes from Apple’s own existing mobile offerings in the space.

Australians are a highly mobile race, due to our geographical dispersion around the continent. We have adopted smartphones such as the iPhone and wireless broadband connections in record numbers, and already conduct much of our digital life on the road. The incoming wave of Android-based smartphones such as the HTC Desire is only fuelling that trend.

If you already have a smartphone (which can also function as a rough eBook reader) and a thin and light laptop, do you really need a third device to sit in between the two and take up space in your carry bag? That’s the question many Australians will be asking themselves about the iPad — particularly with a new model of the iPhone expected out shortly.

It’s this likely Australian apathy towards the iPad (especially outside its early technology adopter heartland) that Apple will be facing with its iPad launch in Australia. After all, it’s not as if all of Apple’s products have succeeded in Australia — the Apple TV being a prime example.

Final words

Of course, ultimately there is so much we don’t know yet about how the iPad will go on sale in Australia. Everything that Steve Jobs touches has a little sheen of gold about it, and there are many Australians who have already gone to great lengths to buy an iPad and speak very highly of it. So it’s possible sales of the device will blow everyone away and that by this time next year, cafes around the nation will be filled with Australians getting their content via an iPad while they sip their latte.

But we’re not holding our breath.

Image credit: Josh Liba, Creative Commons


  1. What is your measurable definition of “success” versus “failure” here, Renai? 1000 units sold? 10,000? 100,000?

    Just so we can have, you know, a rational conversation with facts and analysis instead of the inevitable shouty “iPad is good!” “No, Pad is bad,you’re just a fanboy!” “You’re just all haterz!” rubbish comment stream.

    • A “rational conversation with facts and analysis”?? That’s not what Apple hype is about.

      I would define failure as equalling same amount of sales as Apple TV. Success as you see lots of people walking around the street with iPads, the same way you see with iPhones.

      • “I would define failure as equalling same amount of sales as Apple TV”

        That actually made me laugh. As if the iPad and the AppleTV are comparable products.

        • Hi Grant,

          to me they more or less are — I think even Steve Jobs acknowledged he didn’t initially see a place for a tablet in Apple’s line-up. It sits uncomfortable between the MacBook and the iPhone at quite a high price point.

          Will you be buying one?

          • I will be purchasing one, and it will go nicely with my AppleTV.

            The iPad is not a replacement of either an iPhone or a Computer. It is a replacement to your ‘printer’, and will enable you to enjoy content that you purchase either from the Apple store, subscribe to as a podcast or even rip yourself from existing DVD’s that you own.

            It wont replace any of my single purpose devices like the Kindle (although people will argue that it will/should). The beauty of a single purpose device is that it can get on with the job of doing what it does extremely well.

            I’ll also be using the existing 3G sim that I have occasionally used, giving it purpose.

            I’m a small business owner, and I’ll be buying an iPad to integrate within my business and personal life. It’s also not really _that_ expensive compared to the majority of technology that you can purchase today. I could think of a few places that the iPad is applicably used well outside of the publishing and IT industry, making it very high value.


          • Hmm I agree that it is a replacement to the printer Grant — but I have a policy of not printing anything at the moment, and I survive just fine ;)

            If it came down to something like $399 I could start to get really interested in it, and given the components in it etc I don’t see why Apple is going to charge closer to a grand for it.

          • “I don’t see why Apple is going to charge closer to a grand for it.”

            Because they’re a business, and they can. I don’t see why you’re charging $750 to syndicate your ‘text’, but you can, because it’s yours to do so.


          • Well, $750 is the price the market would bear, so that’s what I charge ;) That’s essentially what I’m saying — Apple is charging too much for this one, when we already have a lot of functionality in other devices. They could get away with charging a lot more for iPhones because we didn’t already have the iPhone functionality in our existing mobiles.

          • Arguably we don’t have a device similar to the iPad, because all other [similar] devices run Windows, and lacks integrated use with our existing iPhones and MacBooks.

          • Actually, I’d say the windows tablets play quite nicely with your iphone.

            Load them up with itunes and hey presto! One might even say in that respect, they’re far more functional and well integrated with your iphone than your ipad will be.

  2. I’m well and truly in the last camp. I have a 40 minute commute on the train every day, and I’d love to be able to do more – but everything I’m not already doing on my iPhone really needs a device with a proper keyboard. An iPad would just be a bigger iPhone to me: I already read books, play games, surf the web, check facebook and Twitter… And on and on. If I buy another portable technology device, it’ll be a netbook. Then, I can get some real emailing done, study, surf to the flash-laden parts of the web (What’s that Apple? Flash is buggy and proprietary and you won’t support it?), and write the Great Australian Novel.

    On top of that, mobile data in Aus is freaking expensive and by all accounts, the iPad won’t be cheap either. All in all, I’d rather by a netbook and wireless net dongle and run with that.

    • That’s pretty similar to my situation, but I already have a shiny new MacBook Pro and a Telstra Next G USB modem. And I have a small business — so I am pretty stingy when it comes to buying new stuff ;)

  3. Well, the angle I’m coming from is that there is in the IT business — and perhaps most others — a huge amount of dick-swinging and a sense that unless something is massively, massively popular then it’s instead a complete and utter failure. Being solidly profitable isn’t enough, it seems, you have to be Number One!

    For some people, the iPad selling few units before Christmas than netbooks will be a “failure” because “the iPad didn’t replace the netbook”. Ditto for Kindle. Another one might be that the iPad has failed if News Limited doesn’t sell X unit of an app for The Australian or something.

    Unless we have some clear definition here, before the device goes on sale, then we commit the fraud of defining our targets after the arrow has been fired.

    • I agree with what you’re saying here, but there is a much higher benchmark for Apple — they have taken the audacious stance that their products change the world, and indeed, some of them have. So we hold them to a higher standard — if they don’t produce something amazing, then we feel let down.

      I know it’s not fair — but neither is the way that Apple continually keeps its customers in the dark about future product launches. It’s hard to plan for anything Apple does. By actively encouraging the hype around its products, this is something Apple has brought upon itself.

  4. Success and failure will be determined, in my opinion, whether or not the device does what Apple says it’s going to do.

    If in, say, 2 years, there’s more netbooks around than iPads then it’s failed. If it fails to create a solid market for tablet devices and computers then it’s failed.

    However, if it does manage to meet both of these self-set goals, then it has worked.

    • I wouldn’t find it altogether hard to believe that the iPad could kill netbooks — I think broadly the netbook phenomenon was a short-lived thing that overall really had the impact of forcing manufacturers to price full-spec laptops reasonably and making them make laptops that are thinner and lighter but still have a bit of grunt.

      I guess what I’m saying is, netbooks are all but dead anyway IMHO, the iPad doesn’t need to succeed that wildly to do them in ;)

      I’m not basing this on any stats — just that compared to the netbook hype two years ago, I rarely see anyone with a netbook these days. Smartphones and full-spec laptops? Yes. Netbooks? No.

      • Not exactly a massive sample size, but I have a netbook (Samsung NC10, imported from the UK, for those of you playing along at home) and *love* it.

        For the work that I do on it, if fits perfectly into what I needed from a portable computer – portability, awesome battery life, reasonable processing power and connectivity. You know, it was never the thickness of “normal” laptops that was my problem, it was the width x height of having a 15″ screen. Smaller screen was just what I was after.

        Although it will probably outsell netbooks, I don’t think raw numbers alone will qualify whether it’s a success or not – especially version 1 of the product. Steve Jobs outlined exactly what he wanted the product to acheive. It has to meet those goals if it’s to be considered a success and that is something I don’t think we’ll be able to conclude until version 2 or 3 comes out in a couple of years.

      • “I rarely see anyone with a netbook these days” is argument by personal ignorance, a logical fallacy. Who you, personally, see from day to day is not necessarily representative. There’s tens of thousands of high school students who have netbooks, for example, thanks to the Federal Ruddbook Initiative™.

        I’m not necessarily sure netbooks are what we should be comparing an iPad with, though. I just mentioned netbooks earlier in an example of a quantifiable measure of success.

        Am I giving you too hard a time this morning, Renai?

          • Thank you boys, you’ve been great :)

            And yes, there are stacks of netbooks in schools etc … but I believe I can make a fair claim to knowing what Australia’s early technology adopters are up to, in both their personal and business lives. The netbook is mainly out — replaced with smartphones and MacBooks — and most are playing a ‘wait and see’ game with the iPad.

            And early adopters, as we well know, drive the attitudes of the rest of the general market — if they don’t buy, it’s likely the rest won’t as well. Everyone knows their friendly neighbourhood geek with their recommendations about what to buy and what not to buy.

            In regards to this by Grant:

            “Arguably we don’t have a device similar to the iPad, because all other [similar] devices run Windows, and lacks integrated use with our existing iPhones and MacBooks.”

            This also is a logical fallacy — it’s not the device itself, it’s the function. We have devices which already give us similar functions — eg paper books, mobile phones, laptops :)

            And bring on the criticism, I’m not running away!! :D

  5. I agree that seeing lots of people walking around with iPads might be a measure of success, but if what I am hearing from US based (and a few lucky Oz who went to the effort) – the iPad is falling into the ‘laptop’ replacement category. Sure not for crazy hackers or hard core developers, but for all those who have to lug around the world pulling the device out at every xray. Just go back to a nice fast desktop at home and work and iPad the gap – mainly using ‘free’ wifi.

    Anyway, who thought the iPhone would mainly be for twitter, reading books and looking up places to eat with GPS when it came out – it was just an iPod with a phone (“and not a very good one, and not….blah blah”). Lets just see what this winds up being used for…

    • “Anyway, who thought the iPhone would mainly be for twitter, reading books and looking up places to eat with GPS when it came out – it was just an iPod with a phone (“and not a very good one, and not….blah blah”). Lets just see what this winds up being used for…”

      Fair point, it will be interesting to see what apps come out for it — the apps made the iPhone what it is, after all — an indispensable device. Maybe the same will happen for the iPad.

  6. I think we’re focusing too much on the iPad as content delivery platform. I suspect where the iPad and its imitators will make their mark in business applications.

    Various industries have been crying out for a intuitive, reasonably priced and easy to carry tablet PC for years and the Windows based systems have failed dismally to cater for this market.

    I can also see it replacing some of the netbook market, coupled with a stand and Bluetooth keyboard I’d certainly be interested in one to fit between my phone and main work computer.

    Where I agree with you Renee is Australian content providers and telcos will almost certainly cripple it in the Australian market as an entertainment device.

    • +1 to this, I can see the iPad particularly taking off in the medical industry, where hospitals need this kind of functionality desperately. Paired with web-based applications and a Wi-Fi network it could work wonders.

      • There’s your problem: interfacing with windows. While I can see the iPad being used in mac-friendly businesses (eg design departments), the folks I know in the health industry don’t use anything mac. I can’t see Apple making themselves too Windows friendly.

    • And I’ll add another +1 for the medical industry.

      In 2008-09 I set up the network for a pair of surgeons and their staff. They had a couple Fujitsu Lifebook tablet PCs that they took into the operating theatre, loaded with X-ray imagery and the video they’d previously taken during patients’ endoscopy. While in the theatre, they entered notes directly into the patients’ records. The iPad could fit into this niche quite nicely, especially if the apps had a better interface than Windows for use while wearing rubber gloves.

      Except… most of the industry’s vertically integrated applications run on Windows. Windows for iPad? Hardly. Cross-compiler for iPad? Now banned.

      • I don’t think they’ll necessarily be using iPads, but now Apple have shown what can be done with the hardware we should see Windows based iPad look alikes coming onto the market.

        Overall, I think the iPad will be good for the tablet category, regardless of whether the sites are ultimately using Apple devices or those from HP, Asus, etc.

    • Here’s one thing I don’t get about using the iPad in the medical industry: Are they going to just have the NSW Medical Data app available in the iTunes store? Surely if they were serious about using an iPad within a hospital/clinical surgery/whatever then they’d have to sign a special deal with Apple to be able to break the existing limitations on the SDK so they could do what they wanted. I, for one, don’t particularly want to see an iMedicine availble for $5 that allows access to medical databases.

      Secondly, if they were to go ahead with a unique licence agreement with Apple, what about the cost? Who is going to pay for this? We’ve just been through a major overhaul of health funding in this country. Is there room within the budget to spend an extra $some-million rolling out iPads?

      • Matthew,

        If you use iphone/ipad apps in an enterprise environment, you have the ability to install apps without having to have them published on the iTunes store.

        ONLY apps that are designed for access through the iTunes store require Apple approval.

  7. There is a couple of issues with ebooks.

    Dispite our size, our market is equivelent to the UK market (i kid you not).

    Secondly, with the dollar so strong, the incentive to ignore regional blocks will get stronger. Why buy locally, when you can get a debt US credit card and purchase from the US itunes store?

    iBooks will take time to negotiate, partly because our publishers are UK not US based, so we can not piggyback on what Apple has negotiated in the US.

  8. I’m waiting for one of the well spec’d, expandable, servicable, cheaper android or linux tablets. Something with flash is pretty much essential. HTML5 will take a while to reach critical mass on the web.

  9. Renai,

    It just appears that your article is designed to stir up the Apple fanboys. Every indication suggests that the iPad will be a success in Australia.

    Lets look at the points you covered in the article:

    1. 3G plans. Your right… 3G plans are expensive in Australia. However it comes down to how each user consumes their data. I am a heavy user of my iphone, yet I rarely go over 200mb per month. While indications are that the ipad will use more data (due to its rich content offerings) its still based on the iphone OS which seems to be relatively frugal.
    That said, Apple will be selling the 3G models WITHOUT data plans bundled (Although telco’s may choose to bundle them with a plan if they wish.)
    Personally…. When I get my ipad, I will be using it with a mifi device so I can share the data accross other devices I have. Much more cost effective from my side of the fence.

    2. Aus tech tax: That is utter crap. Apples pricing is based on the AU exchange rate at the time of release. Look at the 13″ MacBook Pro released a couple of weeks ago. When you take into account exchange rate & GST…. then the pricing difference is marginal.
    Its also worth noting that during the early stages of the GFC, Australia was the cheapest place in the world to buy an iPod (based on the day to day forex rate). The reality is we are at the mercy of the Apple release schedule and global economic movements.

    3. iBooks availability. This is really out of Apple’s hands. The publishers are the ones who have to play the game. The same thing was said about music content on the iTunes store when it finally became available in Australia and now we have an excellent range.
    My prediction is that the store will be slow to start, but will pick up quickly.

    4. Range available. I tend to agree with your comments there. It will be based on an economic reality for publishers.

    5. Existing competition and apathy. Well… You are trying to compare the device to other products on the market. You cant really do that because this is a new category.

    You cant compare this device to the iphone because of the way phones are sold in Australia (subsidised, on a plan and already widespread adoption of the mobile phone). The ipad will carve out its own niche and be realtively successful in doing so.

    This device has been an instant success in the USA but in Australia it will be a comparitive slow burner and will become more widespread as the platform matures and local expertise have the opportunity to touch and see the product.

    I would be interested to see what you think about these points.

    • The aussie tech tax is actually as bad as Renai says.

      The cheapest iMac as a premium based on todays exhange rate of $A167.72 (that not including the GST)

      This is more than 10% of the sticker price in Aus, more than even the GST!

      • Darryl, I disagree with that comment.

        Lets look at the MacBook Pro (13″ base model).

        US Price: $1199.00 plus sales tax (Los Angeles = 9.75%) = purchase price of $1316.00
        AU Price: 1499.00 (including GST) and adjusted for US exchange rate of .9212c = $1380.87

        While there is a difference, it really is not that much.

        As I mentioned before, we are at the mercy of Apple’s product cycle. To their credit, they actually hold prices regardless of the exchange rate until they provide an upgrade.

        Sometimes it is an advantage to Aussies, sometimes its a disadvantage.

        Bigger price gouging happens in other industries between the two countries. The percieved apple tax is small fry in comparison.

          • I totally agree with you on this topic.

            It really comes down to competitive forces within that market and the size of the market they are selling too.

            Lets get away from tech and look at DENIM JEANS!!

            Amazon sell a pair of Levi’s 501’s for US$36.99
            Just Jeans AU sell a pair of Levi’s 501’s for AU$129.99

            So its not just a tech tax, its a AU locality tax.

            We get shafted because we are:
            1) a relatively small market (therefore smaller volume)
            2) Fixed costs are recouped as a higher percentage of purchase price in relation to each unit sold.
            3) They get away with it.

            It sucks, but as I said…. this problem is NOT limited to the AU tech industry.

          • We have an Aussie Tax, just because we’re in Australia.
            Doesn’t matter what it is, we pay more here for some reason, even if the only thing ‘shipped’ is a license string in an email.
            The firewall software we use is 40% more in Australia. Computer games, check out the online pricing on these, you’ll see aussies getting reamed on pricing.

            The iPad and so on are no different.

        • Well, I have done an analysis of the iMac, to be published here tomorrow.

          One thing I will point out, the US price already has a profit margin built in. So in fact they are double dipping. Take the iPhone for example, the cost of manufacturing is half the US sticker price. Then they get the Aussie Premium as well

          Yes there is a lot of taxes and costs in bringing a product to Australia. GST is one, compliance costs for Customs, wages (superannuation, Income Tax witholding, Workcover/Comcare insurance, storage and shipping costs and others).

          However, there is no import duty in hardware and software. None. Nada. Zip. If there was I would be less pissed on the premium (I thought it was 5% hardware and 15% software).

          • Darryl, you said: “Take the iPhone for example, the cost of manufacturing is half the US sticker price. Then they get the Aussie Premium as well”

            How can you compare Australian and US iphone prices?

            Australia is one of the few markets in the world where the iphone is sold OUTRIGHT. In the US, you MUST get an iphone on a plan with AT&T… there are no choices. As a result, the iphone is subsidised and the real cost is hidden. You cannot do a direct comparison, AT ALL.

            While there are times we do have to pay a substantial premium over its US counterpart, Apple actually do something unusual in the hardware world. THEY STICK TO THEIR PRICING.

            They will stick to a price throughout its product cycle. When the product is refreshed… they adjust the prices accordingly. Sometimes that works to our advantage and some times we get shafted. But at least they stick to it. It gives a clear price and an expectation of what you will pay for a product.

            This is what the consumer wants.

    • hey Phil,

      there is a long and proud history within Australian technology journalism of stirring up Apple fanboys. And I would note I own a MacBook Pro and an iPhone. As for your points:

      1. So you’re going to use the MiFi device to share one 3g mobile connection between your iPhone and your iPad? How does that work?

      2. As for the AU tech tax, Apple’s not too bad, but there is no doubt that it exists. You have only to look at our recent articles about Adobe ( and Microsoft ( to see the process in action. Even with Apple, there is no doubt that Australians always pay more, despite the fact the gear is made in Korea or similar. I believe Darryl has covered this — and he has another article coming out shortly demonstrating further.

      3. iBooks availability: As the consumer, why should I care that it’s out of Apple’s hands? The music industry was out of Apple’s hands once upon a time. So was the mobile phone industry. We still don’t have an “excellent range” on the Australian iTunes store — we’re still missing plenty of stuff compared to the US — TV shows, to name one example. And if it was out of Apple’s hands, why would they be appointing an Australian iBooks manager to make it their problem?

      4. Thank you :)

      5. I don’t doubt that the iPad is a new category of device. But it is one that fulfills existing functions. That’s my point. Are there any other tablets out there? No. Are there any other eBook readers, multimedia browsers, devices that let you browse the web and communicate wirelessly? Of course.

      The device has been a relative success in the US — but if you speak to Australians who wandered around New York Apple stores on the day it went on sale, you’ll find they weren’t all packed as they were for the iPhone launch.



      • Renai,

        To respond to your response:

        1. I could choose to use the mifi for my iphone, but I am really referring to other products. In my case I will use the mifi for my laptop, ipad and my wifes ipod touch. I have a need for all three products, so that is the best way to get value out of my monthly spend.

        2. I dont disagree with you regarding the AU tech tax in relation to products from Adobe and Microsoft. I was more making the point that Apple seem to have improved their pricing.

        3. Regardless of the work that Apple do to improve their offerings, it is still out of their hands in relation to availability. This is the fault of the content providers being unable to modernise their operations. The processes in place continue to support local operations of each provider. In particular, TV show distribution online is a result of the content deals signed by the major networks that do not allow the online distribution of their product PRIOR to it being aired on AUS tv. I am sure Apple would be more than happy to put it on their AU store at the same time as the US store if they had a choice.

        4. No problems.

        5. Yes, there are other devices that provide the same functionality as the ipad… but how do they accomplish that?? They use the same OS that a desktop machine does. If you asked most netbook users what they use their device for, they would (most likely) say “email, web browsing and facebook”. In these respects the ipad does these things very well, if not better than a traditional netbook.

        The only thing it doesnt do is Flash…. and thats a whole other argument entirely!

        As for the ipad’s success in the US, its relative availability comes down to 2 things:
        1. Apple has learnt to better manage their product releases.
        2. The ipad is NOT a subsidised product. Therefore an reasonable outlay is required by the purchaser to get the unit from day 1. If every iPhone sold was sold outright and unsubsidised, then the market penetration would be no where near as deep. (Look at the Nexus One to prove my point).

  10. How to make a killer product:

    1. Content. It needs to be able to take or convert any content i throw at it. And that means coping with DRM (and that kills most Linux based platforms, as content producers see Linux as a hackers system)

    2. Networking. Australia does not have the density of wifi as the US does. 3G however is ubiquitous. However 3G bandwidth limits is farcical compared to US (I can only get 1GB on my iPhone, the current trend is 5GB, although it is marketed as unlimited, something the ACCC would go feral on if they did that here)

    3. Battery Life. Apple got one thing right with the iPad, 10 hours battery life. Anyone uses an iPhone knows when you add wifi or watch video, you can see the battery drop to zero faster than an NRL player binge drinking.

    4. Apps. You need apps. I am a linux hippy, so I want open platform and freedom to use any code tools available (even though I cant program for poopoo). Objective C uses the GCC compiler, and much of the Unix coding tools, but Apple controls what API can be used, and controls the marketplace. I should be able to use any language i like, and be free to push the platform beyond what the creators envisioned, like for example EVERY FRAKING APPLE COMPUTER!

    5. Flash. Yes, Flash is the devil’s own software, but it has 90% of the market in streaming video. While C-Net and others can retool their web presence to use HTML5, but what about the small video producers like TWIT.TV and Revision3? And you have to be open to all codecs on HTML5, including Ogg Vorbis and Thedora, and not just h.264.

    6. Cost of entry. You need the platform to be cheap and easy to code for, and reduce the effort to get apps onto the platform. And you need to make it rewarding to publish apps, even free apps.

    7. Marketplace. AppleDRM was not draconian in music, you had to work hart to realise the limits. Apps however, can be retrospectively removed, rejected outright for simple things like icons, names or function. Dont limit what can be done, because someone may take the platform somewhere you did not imagine. Again, LIKE EVERY FRAKING APPLE COMPUTER!

    Anyway, that is my ramble.

    • Darryl,

      I can see where you are coming from.

      However… what you are describing is a product that YOU want, not what the majority of consumer wants.

      1) Content: Yes… I agree, I would like the product to take more formats of content. However there are a number of tools you can get to convert content to what ever you need.
      2) Networking. I totally agree with you on this point. I was recently in Bangkok and even in there the major provider covers the city with a decent wifi service. We severely lack this in Australia.
      3) Agreed on battery life.
      4) Apps. I agree that you need apps. However, you could argue that Apples controlled API is actually a benefit to the product they are selling. Remember that most of the USERS out there dont give a sh1t about how flexible the product is to develop for. They just want to use it and use it easily. As for developing for every apple computer… Well you could argue that the ipad is NOT an apple computer…. its just a mere mobile device. Besides…. when you develop a product for windows desktop…. does it work on windows mobile out of the box?? i doubt it. (i am not a programmer).

      5) Flash…. well its hard to dispute you there. Apple is just playing games with Adobe.

      6) Well one could argue that the Apple iPhoneOS platform is actually very rewarding to publish for. Apple provide a platform that is easy enough for a small operation to get apps out in the open and be made easily accessible by the public AND make some coin for their efforts. Lets ask Atebits and Firemint about their success with the AppStore.

      7) Marketplace. Well I tend to agree with you on that. However I think apple have been a little more relaxed of late. The Opera browser springs to mind here. 12 months ago, i dont think they would have approved this app because it replicated functionality already in the phone.

      Essentially… what I am saying is that a lot of things you say are the bad things about a product (like the ipad) I actually think are good things in the real world. Average punters just like to open a product turn it on and have it work and thats all that matters.

  11. Big call in the title Renai… think that might come back to bite you… :)

    I think the Australian Market will be surprised at the success of the iPad, and the direction it comes from. For a long time I have said that makers of personal computing devices needed to take a page out of the consumer whitegoods book.

    An instant-on device with a very intuitive UI and Modus Operandi will be very popular. In particular, the Seniors Sector (I can’t tell you how many older friends of mine have said it is ideal for them).

    We sometimes need to step back from our very tech-savvy view of the World, and look at the issue through fresh eyes.

    Watch this space… and just like the iPhone, watch the Vendors in the market copy it very quickly.

    I saw an article last week that 5% of the US web browsing market is already via iPad devices… that’s impressive. I’ll give you three months before your article’s title will need to be “Five Reasons why the iPad Succeeded in Australia”.

  12. > Do you really need a colour screen if you just want to read eBooks?

    Wow, so much fail in that sentence.

    Well done Australia. Your prison education is working.

  13. you people are all mad. The ipad can work in windows environments, my macbook pro already does, without any trouble. I can do my work without being impacted in any way shape or form. I can print to a windows gui printer, I can access windows only apps, it is all very simple.

    I use a citrix environment for my business usage.

    By the way, Medical Director, Doctor’s Desktop, MIMSscript and many other practice and reference packages for the medical segment work very happily on a citrix environment. So do many other industry specific packages.

    so… all that complaining just went away. easily. didn’t it?

  14. I think the iPad is going to be a smashing success in Australia – like elsewhere.

    Only time will tell (not much time left now)

    • I think it will be a moderate success, but I still don’t think it is going to revitalise publishing or attract anywhere near the same level of adoption as the iPhone has.

  15. It looks like the kind of thing they walk around the Enterprise holding when they’re sorting shit out.

  16. No matter how good it is, I’d struggle to buy an iPad, as it sounds like it’s Apple’s version of a womens sanitary device!

  17. I was looking for an apple iPhone or lap top to ultimately connect with my desk top. The kids went with me to the apple store and were completely occupied by the iPad while I discussed the options with the sales man. I want a lap top for when I move about or am away from home. The iPad fitted my requirement. It is so easy to use. The applications fit beautifully on the screen and the typing keyboard is easier to use than on my lap top. It is just the right size for carrying around and in that way it’s unlike my lap top. There is no way I would take my lap top into a friends home on a visit but the Ipad is inconspicuous and so convenient. I have the 3G and 64 gig. The proportions ergonomically sit on my knees and between my hands and eyes. If I am sitting in the car, the carry case flips over the steering wheel so I can do some browsing or write a document while waiting for someone. This is the first time I have bought a gadget that does everything and more since the time I bought my Cannon AE3 camera 30 years ago. The Ipad is not a camera. I love my Ipad. And now I want an apple desk top and an apple iPhone.

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