When it comes to Web Browsing the lack of flash support is a non starter for many people. In order to be a hit with Johnny Q Public it needs to run Flash.
Both YouTube (the biggest Flash content site for web browsers) and Vimeo now offer HTML 5 video in beta, which doesn't require (or even support) Flash and will eventually obviate the need for Flash. I expected Flash to be a problem for the iPhone till Google announced that it was recoding all YouTube content to play in h.264 for the iPhone. Vimeo has just announced the same thing.http://pr-usa.net/index.php?option=com_con...4&Itemid=96
As a side note (for most readers), in the UK, the BBC iPlayer is a hugely popular source of online television content, carrying all recently broadcast programmes and also offers an h.264 stream for iPhones that will work fine for the iPad.
Clever use of CSS may reduce and eventually eliminate another category of Flash use: the simple animation of text and graphics (as opposed to full motion video).http://www.gesteves.com/experiments/starwars.html
In the example above, you can even select the text and copy it as it scrolls. It should work fine on the iPad—it certainly works on the iPhone.
Apple seems to be marketing this to people who play video games, well video games need flash to be online. If Johnny Q Public does not buy this in droves it will not take off. I have read a lot of people talk about how great it will be for newspapers and magazines to develop interactive content. However once again this is a non starter. If you were the New York Times would you rather spend big money developing an iPad platform or use flash and/or PDF to make interactive content that will work on just about any computer with a web connection.
There's no lack of games that are good, cheap or both for the iPhone/iPod platform already. In fact, many or most of the most frequently downloaded items from the app store are games--some of the most popular are free or cost 99 cents and will run on the iPad unmodified. There'll be a period during which newcomers to the iPhone or iPod Touch are disappointed when they can't play online games but it will be short—there's better stuff out there and it's not expensive. Ask any young user of an iPod Touch or iPhone; where I live, I can see people every day on any bus or train people engrossed in their iPod and iPhone games—and it's both kids and adults.
My Kindle can work for days or weeks at a time without killing the battery. Apple claims the iPad will run for 10 hours.
True, and that's a strong advantage of e-book readers. Another is the quality of the screens, which I find easier on the eye for long periods of reading.
That said, the iPhone and other large-screen, 3g phones all have poorer battery lfie than their small-screen, 2G counterparts but haven't suffered unduly from poor sales. Likewise, early colour devices like the first colour Palms had much worse battery life than their monochrome predecessors (which also lasted weeks) but in general, people have opted for functionality at the expense of battery life. The early iPods that had hard drives inside (with platters and spindles, not static flash memory) had relatively poor battery life compared with the simple MP3 players that existed already but buyers eventually opted for the iPod's interface, storage capacity and transfer speed. The Kindle is great at what it does but does only one thing well. It will be routine to connect the iPad to to a computer to keep bookmarks, contacts and music, game and video purchases in sync—it charges during that time so it will become a routine thing till battery life improves.
My guess is that a whole bunch of people who hate being stuck behind a computer and don't like small laptops' screen quality and cramped feel will feel comfortable with this device. That is a huge opportunity for photographers—there's a real potential for sales of photography volumes at low cost but high unit volume. Someone looking at a photographer's web site or the credits on a news article could easily—as an impulse purchase—go to the iBook app to buy and download one the artist's publications. The whole process would take no more than a few seconds. The iPad's IPS screen (something that most small laptops still don't have) is likely to deliver very strong results, if the photographer's and publisher's workflow and colour management are good. I can't help thinking that this is a whole new thing, both for writers and photographers.