Posts Tagged iPad
I am a gadget nerd. I think everyone who knows me know this about me. Given a choice between buying something I should probably buy and a new gadget, I will probably buy the gadget. Not surprisingly, most of my gadgets are from Apple.
Back in 2009, my aunt and cousin gave me the money to buy my first Macbook Pro – the one I still use at home to this day. It is an amazing, beautiful piece of hardware that has served me well over the past three years and will probably continue to serve me well into the future.
In 2010, my wife and I got our first iPod Touch, and we fell in love with it almost immediately. The ease of operation was a big selling point for Nichole, and for me – well, it was a nifty gadget.
Last spring, I sold a guitar and my iPod to buy an iPad 2 – one of the best investments I ever made. My iPad is my life. It organizes everything that was scattered and confused about me. Using just a couple of apps (Evernote being the chief one), I am able to search and access years of papers and thoughts that until now resided in several file boxes in my basement.
Last winter, Nichole got the iPhone 4S and I bought an LG Englighten, which runs on the Droid OS. I was being fiscally conservative – getting an inexpensive phone so the monthly phone payments could go toward her phone, which she needed for work. (Nichole works in a deaf program, so text messages and email is the staff’s primary means of communication during the day. Couple that with a very active schedule, and you can see why she would need one.)
While Nic was thoroughly enjoying her iPhone, I was raging at my Droid. It was fugly, and it required factory resets about every 6 weeks. This means constantly having to reinstall apps and dealing with duplicated files. The media player was garbage, and the onscreen keyboard had keys so small I couldn’t type on them. On top of that, the battery generally lasted about 4 hours unless I went in and killed all my apps about ever 20 minutes.
Then the iPhone 5 was announced. Our mobile provider had switched to the pooled data plan, and since there are nine devices on our plan (only 2 for Nic and I, we share a plan with my brother from another mother, Charlie.) I scraped together my pennies, and Charlie let me have one of his device upgrades; and at 3:01am on release day, I ordered an iPhone 5.
It arrived a week ago. I pressed a couple of buttons and voila! All my contact information, all my notes and files from my iPad were on the iPhone as well. Choirs of angels sang. It was great.
I love the iPhone 5. I really do. The experience is fantastic. The device is a miracle of technology.
But then, during Sunday service, Siri – the sometimes obnoxious assistant that resides within the iPhone 4S and 5 – started talking from my pocket. This was not good. She kept talking. I had to to turn the phone off.
She kept doing it – talking when she was supposed to. Eventually, my home button stopped working. Long story short, I spent yesterday between two visits to the Apple store and last night, walked out with a brand new iPhone 5. Turns out my initial handset had a defect, a bad connection that short circuited the home button.
The process of moving my files and stuff from the broken iPhone 5 to the new one? About ten minutes because everything was backed up on iCloud (which is finally a legitimate cloud service). All my apps took a little while longer to download, but the iCloud backup restored all the app data so once they were on the iPhone they had all the same data. I replaced the handset and did not lose a single thing.
The post-Steve Jobs Apple builds systems. This is a very different Apple from the one that made hip music players and cute little white laptops. The iPhone 4, 4S and 5 – the iPad 2 and 3 – the new iPod Touch – Siri – iCloud – even the new Thunderbolt and Lightning digital connectors – all of this is part of a system that is shifting attention away from individual devices to a comprehensive mobile solution for connectivity and sharing. Right now, they are working out the kinks; and it is a little frustrating for some of the early adopters because they are thinking on a much smaller scale than Tim Cook and his team are.
I love my iPhone 5. I love the apps being written for it. I am in love with the Cloud and its potential.
Did I mention my iPhone is LTE and so in Manchester and Nashua my cellular data connection is actually faster than my home connection?
Yeah, I like my new phone. I like what Apple is doing.
I love my iPad, and with Apple making a large fortune on the new iPad launch (nearly $2 billion in the first weekend), there are clearly a lot of other people who love the iPad as well. Some people love them too much.
If you’re a pastor who uses an iPad, drift on over to iPad in Ministry. They don’t post often, but when they do, it is usually interesting content.
Here are a list of things I do and don’t do with my iPad:
- I carry my iPad around, but I don’t preach from it. I am too animated when I speak. I’d much rather lose my grip on a $25 Bible than on my $— iPad! (I don’t even want to think about how much I spent on the thing some days.)
- I use only the Apple Smart Cover because that was how Apple designed the iPad to be used. I had a third party black leather case, but ultimately I decided the Zen of the unit without ornamentation was for me.
- I spent the $80 to have the iPad encased in clear plastic – at the kiosk outside of the Apple store – and it is the best investment I made with the thing. I will never use an unprotected iPad again.
- I use four apps more than anything else (Evernote, Logos, Netflix and Facebook) but I have more than 200 apps on the iPad. Why not, right?
I love my iPad, but won’t be upgrading to the new one any time soon.
Jony Ive, the mastermind of design at Apple, had this to say about Apple’s competition and why they fail to make designs with the same kind of hook that Apple makes:
Most of our competitors are interested in doing something different, or want to appear new — I think those are completely the wrong goals. A product has to be genuinely better. This requires real discipline, and that’s what drives us — a sincere, genuine appetite to do something that is better.
What stuck in my mind is the statement, “A product has to be genuinely better.”
I am somewhat known as a person who likes to change things. My friends in the congregation love to note that I change my office every 6-8 weeks. This is not simply because I like to mess with stuff. I am genuinely interesting in making things genuinely better.
Shouldn’t we be asking questions like, “How can I improve study habits? What kind of posture helps me think better? How can I take my spiritual disciplines deeper?”
And in the church, shouldn’t we be seeking what is genuinely better rather than that is just different or has the appearance of novelty?
Being better than you were – doing something better than you have should be the objective, not being different or appearing new.
Often I think people want to do new things in the church because they confuse new with effective. Certainly novelty has its merits, but there is also something to be said for doing the old thing (even the ancient things, since we do after all follow a 2,000 year old religion) better - genuinely better.
So, today Tim Cook took the stage to announce the arrival of the “new iPad.” Not surprisingly, it features the ultra-HD Retina display, a more powerful processor, 4G LTE connectivity, and a bunch of other goodies.
Let me be honest. I own an iPad 2, and it is awesome. Just ask my wife. I carry it everywhere with me and use it for everything. I don’t think I’ve actually used my television for anything in months.
But the iPad 2 does everything I need it to. I don’t need 4G speeds and I don’t play big video games like Infinity Gauntlet. While the new 5 megapixel, 1080p camera on the back is great, I rarely use my iPad to capture pictures because – well, it’s a bit big for a camera.
Will people rush out and buy the new iPad? Of course. Apple will move millions upon millions of units, and the iPad 2 will continue to sell like crazy as well – especially to educational institutions who will use it for the iBook textbook feature.
But for all intents and purposes, this is just a product refresh – like when they refresh the Macbook Pro line or the Apple TV line. I think that is obvious from the way Tim Cook dropped the numeral on the end and just called it the “new iPad.” If you’re going to buy an iPad, buy this one; but if you already own an iPad 2, there’s no rush.
Today, Hewlett-Packard announced that they were stopping production on webOS devices and they were spinning off their PC manufacturing division. These announcements came on the heels of the completely underwhelming reveal of the HP Touchpad – a tablet designed to run webOS and compete with Apple’s iPad.
Last week, it was announced that Sprint dropped plans to sell Research in Motion’s Blackberry tablet called Playbook because of its meager sales results. And while the Android-based tablets have sold better than webOS and Blackberry, they hold only a sliver of the market despite multiple builds, styles and distributors.
Apple’s iPad sits securely on the mobile computing world’s throne.
Simply put, Apple engineers don’t build devices. They create an experience. They let design drive mechanics rather than the other way around. Without worrying about technical specifications or price breaks, Apple designs something people will feel immersed in. Everything is subject to the connection a consumer makes with the product.
As a result, Apple is sitting on a larger cash reserve than even the United States government. They are the number one manufacturers of mobile computing devices in the world.
Steve Jobs sees the future because he realizes what people ultimately care about is not tech or numbers or price. People want to feel connected. They want their devices to be an extension of their own thoughts and beliefs. This breeds into the device users a sense of community and commonality with other users.
Even I find it happening. When I sit down at a table and there are other iPad users there, I can’t resist the temptation to talk about the experience. It is infectious. In short, Apple has become viral – in the best possible way.
There’s something to be learned from Apple’s philosophy that can be applied to ministry.
The days of bigger equals better are gone. The era of the megachurch is over. Numbers and programs are not enough for people designing connection and feeling as if they are apart of something.
People are more than willing to have a big corporation make their products. (Apple is the richest company in the United States after all.) But they don’t want to feel like they are a number. They want to be connected. To be known and know.
Just like Steve Jobs could see the connections people needed to make and then created devices to make those connections happen, those in ministry need to be willing to look beyond programs and strategies. These things are not ends in themselves. They are simply means. Strip all of that away, see the connections people need and then make it a reality – at all costs.
After I got my iPad, I tried out The Daily, a news magazine produced by Fox News. My friend Brandon recommended an iPad app called Zite to replace it, and after downloading it, I was wowed.
Zite aggregates your Google Reader and Twitter accounts to determine your interests. It then produces a user-specific ezine, sectioned according to the categories. It finds. As you read, you send input back and Zite refines your ezine even further.
This may be one of the greatest free apps ever. In a blink, I can check all the news on the web that is pertinent to my interests, share it with people who might also be interested and then get on with my day.
Oh, and the iPad 2 is incredible and continues to wow me.