Do I need an iPad?

Within a day after every one announced that Apple launches iPad, there are many questions that have come up in my mind as an addicted user of laptops and smart phones for over ten years now.

I spend over 12 hours a day on these devices every day and am still not sure if the iPad will be beneficial to me in any way. I did a similar comparison between iPhone and Blackberry and decided to stick to Blackberry.

I am trying to come up with a similar comparison, just focused around my needs. So before I go into any comparison, it will be better to take a look at what I do.

Here are the list of things I do today, which shows the pattern of my work:
– Keep a smartphone handy all the time.
– Additionally keep a laptop handy next to me all the time while at home.
– Do not like to carry my netbook/laptop from room to room, so try to have one device in each room, from where I can continue doing my work. (I have setup my online dependency in such a way that nothing is machine dependent and any machine connected to the internet is sufficient for me to continue my tasks from where I left.)
– Have not used the same laptop/netbook beyond six months.

Now for some insights on what I do online:
– Read at least for an hour online every day.
– Blog on one or more of my favourite blogging sites on Blogs Plugin
– Experiment on a new technology for an hour every day.
– Manage my team and their deliverables
– Keep track of the payments and receivables
– Communicate with website clients, advertisers and publishers – primarily by email

Based on my needs and pattern, here are some of the factors that I started thinking of which are specific to the iPad device

1. Cost Related: At 499USD, is it worth getting a device, while the regular laptops at this cost price can give far more number of features.

2. Functionality: If it is not going to be multi-tasking, then how can I do multiple things at the same time, eg. chatting on IM and checking a mail and also a website, while listening to a song and doing data crunching, all at the same time.

3. Flash Features: If iPad does not support flash, what am I going to do for my needs where many of our widgets are flash based? I get a strong feeling that flash will work on it, lets see.

4. Camera: If iPad does not have a camera in it, then I guess I should depend on my smartphone for taking pictures.

At this point, though I am curious to get an iPad, I am really not sure if there is any real value added benefit it brings for my needs. Will have to wait and see.

Interestingly, I also got an email from fuze.com mentioning that they are already working on making sure fuze meetings can be conducted using iPad. It is a very smart move by adopting the SDK for a device that has not yet been made available in the market.

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