Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Eating Crow

If I'm going to write a prediction post it's only fair that I write a follow up to rate myself.

  1. The product will be too expensive. Obviously I was very wrong here. There were a lot of leaks that the price point would be a lot lower than people expected and I clearly ignored them. But let's not pretend the unit is $500 either. 16GBs is clearly not enough storage to use the iPad in any reasonable way. And personally I'm resistant to paying for another monthly data bill. But we aren't talking about apple hifi or iPhone gen 1 prices here.
  2. Most developers will be locked out, except perhaps in a ridiculously restrictive way. Honestly, my expectation was that the only way you would be able to get applications onto the device was through the app store. But I over stated because I didn't expect iPhone apps to be compatible (and I assumed the API would be released at WWDC). I figured even if there were app store applications available immediately it would seem pretty pathetic because I was expecting a device that looked more like a mac than an over-sized iPod. All that said, I'm still going to give myself half points for this one, rather than no points. Just because we've gotten used to the idea that you have to get permission to put an application on your own device doesn't mean it's not ridiculously overly restrictive.
  3. Content channels will be incredibly locked down. Again, I was expecting a more general/mac like device instead of an over-sized iPod. If this had been a mac tablet then it would have seemed absurd that it couldn't play divx. As a large iPod we've been conditioned to expect it not to play divx. But I think I really have to give myself a zero on this prediction simply because apple went with a standard and used epub. However, here are some things to consider. My guess is apple will treat epub like aac: you will be able to install non-drm'd epubs from anyone but only apple will be allowed to offer drm'd epubs. Where does this put amazon? I'm sure the kindle app will still be available but there will be advantages to using the native iPad book reader. Amazon's content deals won't let them sell drm free books and apple won't let amazon sell drm'd books into the iPad book reading app. So the only major seller of content of books for the iPad will still be apple.
  4. There will be some incredibly obvious feature that is inexplicably missing. Really this is a silly prediction. Of course features are inexplicably missing. Because the explanation is available to those who are working in the real world who are dealing with timelines and pricing restrictions. So yeah, there is no gps in the non-3g version, no camera, no multi-tasking, and no flash. And there are probably many more. So I get full points but how could I not.
So why were my predictions so wrong? Am I just an idiot? I think all my predictions fairly cited apple's history for first gen products. Perhaps what I missed is that maybe this isn't a first gen product. This really is just a big iPod touch. Book store is new and so are these iWork apps but really they are just riffs on current businesses. And we haven't seen how they will pan out yet.

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