I was on a conference call, but was madly refreshing the NYTimes Bits blog to get the details. For someone who has a Mac laptop and an iPhone (hey, that's me!), I can see the value of the ApTab, especially if you travel for both local and remote events. 10 hours (ish) of battery life? Yes, pleaae.
My first things I think I like:
- Hardware - The size and weight is nice. Yes, it's somewhere between a laptop and an iPod Touch but there seem to be so many places the ApTab can be used. Add a cover or jacket, and it likely won't be much different than the Mac laptop.
- Software (O/S) - Seems snappy and basic, which also seems perfect for this type of device. If this is a "transition" device (somewhere between a desktop/laptop and a smart phone), there isn't much need for all the crazy code that goes into a full-blown operating system.
- Software (Apps) - There are lots, and lots more coming.
Realistically, you are investing in the hardware at this point. Can you do without USB inputs or external monitor ports or a camera? Of these, I think the camera would make the most sense to include for video conversations.
I recently bought a pair of bluetooth headphones, which the ApTab will be able to use. Yay!
The other thing I was hoping for was a native handwriting application. You know, to use it like a, um, legal pad? How cool would it be to actually jot down notes using your own stylus/finger/pointy object? I could take this to a meeting and actually use it to capture notes - I could use that. I found a few apps in the store, so that's good news, and I imagine some young whipper-snapper will create an app that can dump the handwriting notes into an email/calendar/contact/to-do list.
The nice thing is that Apple has a few more weeks and months to tinker with the final product. I'm not sure about dropping a camera in at this point, but there might be some additional bells and whistles that could accompany the real thing.
But I think that's the point here. If I can do with out the hardware things for the next 18-24 months and can find away around the screen-based keyboard, I'm interested.
In fact, I want one.