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Captain_Fantasy's avatar

Has Apple jumped the shark* with the iPad?

Asked by Captain_Fantasy (11416 points ) February 15th, 2010

They seem to be trying extra hard to tell us we need it after initial responses were underwhelming.

*Jumping the shark is a reference to an episode of Happy Days which features a water skiing Fonz jumping over a captured shark, an episode generally regarded as excessively ridiculous and marked the impending death of the series.

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18 Answers

fireinthepriory's avatar

Well, they may have overestimated its ability to sell, but I don’t think it’s a mark of Apple’s impending death. If anything, it will take longer than they thought to catch on, and they will make the necessary changes to make it more marketable.

kevbo's avatar

Hardly. It’s going to sell like crazy, and I’m not saying that as a fanboy. I’m not even going to get one, but I would if I had an iMac instead of a laptop. It definitely has its place.

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

It’s a little much when Steve Jobs says this is the most important thing he’s ever done.
I’m sure Apple’s loyal following will eat it up but without support for flash, usb or a camera, it seems a little weak.

J0E's avatar

If by jumping the shark you mean they’re marketing a next generation iPhone/iPod touch as a new revolutionary product, then yes, they are.

grumpyfish's avatar

Definitely haven’t jumped the shark—Apple releases plenty of horrible devices, and recovers just fine.

Companies cannot really “jump the shark” since they are capable of reinventing themselves (as Apple has done), while TV shows tend to fizzle out since you can’t really come out with, e.g., the reimagined BSG as the 3rd season of the original BSG. It’s a pretty poor metaphor.

Apple always hypes products like this, particularly things that haven’t existed in their product line.

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

If their market is old people, they should be able to clean up since it’s just a giant iTouch.

Arp's avatar

Tablets have been around for forever. Just because they put an apple sticker on it and limit what you can and cannot download, it is suddenly a creative new idea…

Dog's avatar

To me this appears to be the Apple answer to the netbook. That being said they are late to the party and the average consumer is still reeling from the recession. Perhaps this is motivationg the extra hype.

marinelife's avatar

No, I don’t think so. It will expand in the marketplace after the price comes down somewhat.

borderline_blonde's avatar

We’ll have to wait and see. I overheard a phone conversation on the train the other day… some guy apparently worked with Apple, and he was saying they’re trying to strike a deal with college campuses to sell the iPad in campus bookstores. There’s definitely some pushy, overconfident advertising going on when a deal like that is made, but once a few college students buy the thing, it’s going to explode faster than skinny jeans.

syz's avatar

Thanks for the explanation of “jumping the shark”. Of course, you’ve now dated yourself.

Dog's avatar

One major advantage is the use of 3G so internet can be used nearly everywhere. For those who can afford the device and the plan it will be awesome and make the netbook obsolete. So in this respect I do not think any sharks have been jumped.

Unfortunately I am not one who can afford it at the moment. Perhaps if I spent less time Fluthering and more time working I could. ;)

gemiwing's avatar

One could argue that they jumped the shark with the Lisa- but they seem to have recovered from that quite nicely.

Perhaps it won’t catch on with the first gen, yet Apple is good at either providing what people want (eventually- I mean cut and paste fer crying out loud) or convincing them that they do want it.

robmandu's avatar

Judging by the success of the iPhone and iPod touch, the lack of Flash is certainly not going to be a significant negative factor. I would argue that other platforms inability to develop custom apps using Cocoa and the iPhone SDK is a significant drawback for the competition.

Also, having witnessed how Apple introduces and rolls out new products, like the iPhone, I expect to see new features announced on or about the day the iPad actually goes on sale. Could be a front-side camera, could be support for the background operation of 3rd party apps (beyond simple notification), or who knows what.

Further, referring to the iPad as “just a giant iTouch” is certainly missing out on some very differentiating factors. The new interface and interaction capabilities alone are significant, but then combine those with new microprocessor architecture, lower network pricing, and an expected partnership with old-school print media, and it’s increasingly difficult to bin this product into any of the established categories.

Seek's avatar

Am I the only one that sees the Star Trek reference in this new piece of equipment?

Star Trek: The Next Generation PADD

Apple iPad

…and just for that, I have to have one

Except that I’m poor. Alas.

gggritso's avatar

@Seek_Kolinahr I give it three days after launch for someone to skin it to look like one.

Seek's avatar

@gggritso
Won’t take that long. I’ve been stealing other people’s LCARS skins for years. All the info is there, they just have to finagle it to fit a new screen. ^_^

Lightlyseared's avatar

Nope. In fact in a few years time people will look back and wonder why it wasn’t done like this before. If you look back 10 years to when they released the original ipod people had the same misgivings. Compared to other mp3 players at the time the ipod’s spec list was a bit lacking (limited number of file formats supported, no ability to manually manage music on the device, etc). What it did do was make it easy for anybody to take all their music with them anywhere. That’s what it was designed to do, that’s all it was designed to do and it did that perfectly which is why you can still buy them today and all the others fell by the wayside.

There’s a list of things people want from the ipad (camera, card reader, keyboard etc) but the Apple way has never to been to give people everything they want but to give them just what they need. The ipad is not meant to replace a desktop or laptop, it gives you quick access to the internet (an iphone wakes up and is running safari in seconds,, compare that to a laptop) excellent battery life and a form factor so portable you don’t have to think about whether or not you should take it with you.

Final point, if people seriously wanted or needed touch screen computers with a built in keyboard and all the features you get on a laptop then Microsoft tablet PC’s would have taken off years ago.

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