The Third Device

A blog about the iPad.

The iPhone 4 is out! So, what does that mean for the iPad?

So, the next iPhone has descended from the heavens and is finally official. I must say, it’s an amazing creation. The video showing how the phone was engineered and built is like a scene out of a science fiction movie! And of course, it was announced with a whole new slew of features, some of which will be very significant for the iPad platform.

The most obvious of course will be the new operating system. They’ve stopped referring to it as the iPhone OS and are simply calling it iOS, presumably encompassing the iPhones, iPod Touches, and iPads. Multitasking and folders are some of the more significant features, and it rolls out for the iPhones towards the end of this month. No real word yet as to when it hits for the iPad.

As an avid reader, one of the most exciting developments  for me was the announcement of an impending upgrade to the iBooks app (now available on iPhone for the first time). This would allow you to read PDF files within iBooks without the need for conversion (yay!!). I wonder if this has any implications for the sale of magazines and periodicals on the App Store. Right now, the current model for purchasing standalone, non-Zinio magazine titles (Wired, Time, Popular Science, GQ) is just too damn expensive and kludgey.

The new iBooks app will also give you the ability to create bookmarks and notes as you read. And in a neat tip of the hat to the Kindle’s Whispernet, the latest version of iBooks promises to sync your page location wirelessly across all your iDevices – so if you start reading a book on your iPad in the morning and then over lunch decide you want to read a few more chapters on your iPhone, you should be able to pick up right where you left off.

The FaceTime video chatting feature of the iPhone Quattro is extremely interesting because it could portend the arrival of a video camera in the next iteration of the iPad. True, an iPad can’t do mobile calls but the fact that FaceTime operates (for now anyway) only over WiFi makes it plausible that video chat will show up on all of Apple’s devices. But I think that releasing an iPad with a camera before the launch of iPhone 4 would have definitely diluted the effect of the new phone’s FaceTime feature.

It’s a safe bet that a variant of the Retina Display technology will eventually show up on the iPad as well, but  they’ll probably need a processor boost on the next gen iPad to power that large a display resolution.  To tell the truth I’m already quite pleased with the resolution of books, photos, and movies on my iPad’s display so any further improvement on pixel density will be nothing short of staggering.

Together with the iPhone’s HD video recording capabilities, Jobs also announced a mobile version of iMovie for more sophisticated editing. It remains to be seen if this app will run on the iPad, but it just seems logical to see a scenario where you shoot video with the phone and then export it to the tablet for easier editing and eventual presentation. You can do that with photos after all, why not movies? That, frankly, would be awesome.

These are my preliminary thoughts as the announcement sinks in. We’ve been given a peek at the future roadmap of Apple’s mobile devices (iPad 2.0 will be fantastic, and we’re still trying to get used to iPad 1.0!), and it’s exciting as hell. I can’t help but marvel at how Apple has somehow gotten to the stage where they’ve got two legitimate, powerful operating systems (Mac OS X and iOS) out there powering their machines. As hardware improves and prices drop, will we see their convergence? Or will one dominate the other? Either way, it’s a great time to be a fanboy.


June 8, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized


  1. I read an article before about how much investment apple is giving on the whole “cloud computing” digital wave. Cloud computing makes the iPad and the new iPhone more sense. This is probably the reason why Apple and Google have some friction as they are the two major players in the whole scheme of cloud computing

    Comment by Anton | June 8, 2010 | Reply

  2. As it would make a lot of sense to include facetime to the iPad, I would think otherwise. Not that I don’t want that to happen but Cupertino Inc. might not be at ease with the thought. iPad could suffer the same fate as the iPod Touch; meaning it would intentionally cripple the device so the function between the iDevices wouldn’t overlap. They basically have the same functionality, but (iDevices) have a certain function that is distinct to certain hardware. We’ll see what they will do but iPad 2.0 will most likely be a 1.5 kinda like what they did with the iPhone.

    Comment by Ryan T. | June 8, 2010 | Reply

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