Why I’m Writing This On An iPad

When the iPad came out I was vehemently against the idea of getting one, for several reasons:

  1. No multitasking
  2. No flash video
  3. No USB

I railed against the device online, I said similar things on the Social Mediators show and I argued against getting one privately.

How things change. I’m writing this post on my shiny new iPad, while sitting on a plane to Montreal.

Why the U-turn?

Several key reasons.

  1. Testimonials
  2. Travel
  3. Multitasking (soon)
  4. Convenience
  5. Work

1. Testimonials

Study after study shows that peers and word of mouth are central to purchase decisions. Every year, Edelman publishes its “Trust Barometer” study, and time after time it shows that we trust “people like us.” Well, since the first release of the iPad I’ve seen peer after peer obtain these devices and rave about the freedom and flexibility they gain when they do so. I’m not going to lie, this was a primary driver in my decision to purchase an iPad.

2. Travel

In addition, as my frequency of travelling increases, I’ve begun to long for a device which I can pull quickly and easily on a plane or in an airport lounge. My laptop just didn’t cut it from an ease-of-use perspective. When I had to power down ahead of take-off, I just hit a button and slid the iPad into the seat-back in front of me. Nice and easy.

3. Multitasking

When Steve Jobs first announced the iPad, I was dismayed that it wouldn’t support multitasking. I want to be able to deal with email while having alerts for new Twitter replies, or to flip back and forth between a game and a blog post. Fortunately, the upcoming OS update will take care of that so it’s no longer an issue.

4. Convenience

I cant count the number of times when I’ve wanted to quickly find something online, order delivery or show Caralin a neat video but haven’t wanted to wait for my laptop to boot up. The iPad boots instantly and is small enough to keep on-hand when you’re lazing around the house – perfect for couch surfing. What’s more, as with the iPhone, the web browsing is a dream compared to my Blackberry.

5. Work

Ok, this maybe me rationalizing a bit, but if I’m going to be on top of my game i think I should have some idea about the latest trends. I make a point of it with software; i think it’s important with innovative new hardware too. Case in point: within minutes of tweeting about buying the iPad, I received a call on my cell from a client asking about it. Frankly this isn’t the main reason for me buying this but it was a small factor.

Now, I’m not going to pretend this is a “magical” device as Jobs would have us believe. The keyboard takes some getting used to (placement of the space bar in particular), and I’m still incensed by the lack of Flash. A camera for video chat might be nice, although the device is too heavy to be used as a regular camera in other regular situations. However, the pros outweigh the cons for me at this point.

What do you think? Have you or will you get an iPad?

Dave Fleet
Managing Director and Head of Global Digital Crisis at Edelman. Husband and dad of two. Cycling nut; bookworm; videogamer; Britnadian. Opinions are mine, not my employer's.