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My iPad Is Purchased

April 21st, 2010

After hearing that the iPad would be sold a month later in Japan than the U.S., I figured that it would not be worth it to ask anyone to buy one for me and ship it to me. Not only would it be a pain in the neck for them, but it would also cost a lot extra–about $45 to ship it with insurance, and who knows what customs would add to that. An extra three weeks wasn’t too long to wait.

But then Apple pushed back the international release by at least a month. I was then seriously tempted to ask family to buy and send one–they were willing–but fortunately other avenues became available. An official from my college’s home campus in Sheboygan, WI came to visit, and I thought that maybe I could have one ordered and delivered to him before he left.

That’s when I discovered how short supply really is. The online Apple Store listed a shipping delay of “5 to 7 business days,” and that did not include the actual time for shipping, meaning it could take up to two weeks; too late for this arrangement. There are two Apple stores in Milwaukee; neither had iPads in stock. You could have an iPad set aside, but only by coming in to the store. You could pay for one by credit card, but you would have to fax copies of your credit card. A family member of the college official, a former student of mine, volunteered to go to the store to get one. None of that worked out.

Two professors working at my school are going overseas and very kindly volunteered to buy one for me. One is going to Hawaii, and will be back by the end of April; her son also volunteered to pick one up while he was there. I called the Apple stores in Honolulu, and found that they too were out of stock–in fact, the person on the phone claimed that nationwide, units were not being offered for sale as “in stock,” but were instead all sold out via reservation. But Hawaii has a special case: tourists make reservations but then leave before they can pick them up, putting them up for grabs. So my colleague’s son was able to pick one up, along with an Apple case and a VGA adapter, just today.

So, in a little more than a week (a day before we move, in fact) I’ll have my mitts on one–as much as a month before they go on sale here.

I decided to go with the 16 GB unit, primarily because I have found various apps which allow for either audio/video streaming, or else wireless network access of files which, I understand, can sometimes be shared between apps. Apps which I am ready to install–I have already stocked up 42 iPad-only apps, several of them paid apps, and about 20 universal apps. I’ve built up a wish list of about 10 more paid apps which I’ll consider buying when I have the machine in hand. The App Shopper site does an excellent job of keeping track of all iPhone OS apps; you can view apps by platform, popularity, paid/free, or Updates/New/Price Change, or any combination of these. Want to know what iPad apps have recently been priced down or made free? The site is kept up-to-date and is very nicely laid out, which links to the iTunes Store for each app.

And yes, I know, I am too much in to this. Hey, it’s a hobby! (And with yesterday’s earnings report, a profitable one–Apple stock is up $15, or 6%, on Apple’s stellar performance–even before the iPad came out.)

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  1. April 22nd, 2010 at 00:26 | #1

    I hadn’t planned on getting one until the 2nd gen, but my boss at TechnoBuffalo decided he wants a 3G unit. As soon as he picks that up, he’s selling me his 32GB Wi-Fi version for a bit of a discount. Now I’m all antsy for it. Still debating Pages, but his will have it on there for me to try until I plug it into a computer and wipe it, so will at least get to try it.

  2. Luis
    April 22nd, 2010 at 00:32 | #2

    The reports are that iWork is not all that hot. It does what it does, but not in a full-featured way. Pages may be the most relevant, maintaining formatting and being able to save and email out as MS Word, but Keynote and Numbers don’t support direct exports as MS Office docs, and suffer quite a bit of format loss in translation to and from the iPad.

    I’ll still be getting them, but just won’t have stellar expectations–the suite will cost 30 bucks, worth it but not more than worth it.

    What I fear is that Apple will pull the “no upgrade deals” to future versions, and they’ll demand you cough up $30 every year for the improved apps. That’d be a bit of a buzzkill, but Apple seems bent on pulling that kind of crap a lot lately.

    And good wordage there–“antsy” is exactly how I feel. I own the darned thing, but can’t lay my hands on it for another 9 days. Aaaaaaaaarrrrraaarrrrrgggghhhhhh.

  3. Luis
    April 22nd, 2010 at 00:35 | #3

    And hey, I thought *I* was going too far for buying a 1st-gen iPad with the intent of selling it after the 2nd-gen model comes out. To buy one and sell it within a month? Your boss must be, if not wealthy, then certainly comfortable. Or a severe Apple fanatic. Or on a company budget.

  4. April 22nd, 2010 at 00:40 | #4

    Well, I -am- paying him for it, he isn’t losing too much on the deal, but he’s saving me tax and throwing in the case and some sort of protective shield for free.

    Yeah, I’ve heard about the formatting stripping, that’s why I’m only considering Pages, that way I can at least work on blog posts wherever I like and then just copy the text into WordPress. It should work out.

    The streaming video apps like Netflix and ABC are what have me stoked. Can’t wait to try those.

  5. Troy
    April 22nd, 2010 at 01:56 | #5

    I finally brought my iPad to the gym last week and it was awesome.

    I’d taken my iPod Touch dozens of times and my MBP once. The iPod was just a bit too small and of course the MBP was way too big and wouldn’t really fit on the treadmill.

    Being book-sized, the iPad was of course perfect. People say it’s not a widescreen player but they are teh dumb — it’s easier adapting widescreen content to 4:3 than it is adapting 4:3 content to widescreen, and we have 80+ years of 4:3 content to watch still.

    I took my iPad to the iPhone developers meetup this week, but sitting around with nothing to do waiting for things to start I was wishing I had my notebook since typing on this thing is a joke.

    In Japan I discovered the joys of the B5 Campus notebook:


    it’s pretty close in size to an iPad. Curiously, holding both at arms length simultaneously it’s tough to tell which is heavier.

    The iPad also fulfills my long-standing wish for one of those combo LCD-Wacom tablets, tho somebody needs to invent a meat stylus I guess.

    As expected the iPad is the ultimate commuter toy. Makes me want to move back to Japan, where I rode the train everywhere every day :)

  6. Luis
    April 22nd, 2010 at 02:07 | #6

    Troy: mine is coming just in the nick of time: the day after I get it, we’re moving to a place from which I will, for the first time in years, have a daily train commute. Which will happen to be exactly long enough to watch a “1 hour” TV show or podcast. And I now have those Motorola Bluetooth headphones, too. Sweet.

    Can’t wait to show it off to my classes. And I will have the perfect excuse–I teach two sections of “Introduction to Computers” where both new computer form factors and multi-touch GUI elements are eminently relevant, especially in the first week or two of the semester. I’m thinking of pulling a Colbert, making a video of myself saying I want the iPad, then zooming out to show me holding the iPad–I can probably swing it on the video OHP where it’ll look like it’s coming from my computer at first.

  7. Troy
    April 22nd, 2010 at 02:22 | #7


    you should join the developer program and start puttering around. Replace some of the time cruising political sites with coding!

    iPhone OS 4 doesn’t have garbage collection unfortunately but ObjC 2.0’s properties is somewhat of a replacement — you can do:

    obj.someList = nil;

    and behind the scenes the runtime will issue an [obj.someList release]; message for you.

    With Apple’s recent crackdown on alternate runtimes ObjC looks to be the way to go. For homegrown apps you can also still develop in MonoDevelop — C# is the mainstream of app development I think and it’s a much better language and runtime than ObjC 2.0.

    If you’re really adventurous you can embed a DHTML page into a proper iPhone app via WebKit.


    I wrote that 4+ years ago now, LOL. They took away the JavaScript -> Objective-C bridge for iPhone, but the Objective-C side can still can into the JavaScript.

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