So, it’s a “pad,” but I still think of it as a tablet.
Everyone had been hoping for a giant leap forward, but it’s not. It’s just a well-designed tablet computer, and tablet computers aren’t new (they’ve been Windows so far). So a good tablet is a good thing, but it’s not as big of a deal as the iPhone was.
That said, watching the promotional video (link below) should make it clear that this really is where things are going. In a few years my current laptop will go kaput, and the iPad may be a viable option by that point. In fact, my ideal is to have one computer, which we’ll call an iPad for now. I can set it in a dock with a keyboard and use it as a normal computer. I can take it with me and read a book on it. I can set it next to my TV in the living room and watch a movie on a big screen. Basically, it would be strong enough and powerful to act as my main computer yet portable enough and adaptable enough to plug into screens and keyboards wherever I have them. In fact, with a Bluetooth headset, this ideal computer of mine could even be my phone. Plus, the whole thing would be synced to the Internet so if it were stolen or broken I could download the whole thing to a new machine. We’re not there yet. But one can see glimmers in the iPad of how close we actually are.