Some more Thoughts on the iPad…

As with any new technology, the iPad has created quite a buzz in the media these past few days as consumers and experts start to analyze Apple’s new product. As we discussed in class, the iPad will definitely have an impact on the publishing industry, which has been suffering lately. According to this article on CNN,  index.html?hpt=Sbin many publishers have already made content deals with Apple to sell their books and magazines to iPad users.

Sarah Chubb, president of Conde Nast Digital thinks that the device will encourage sales, saying:

“It’s become clear over the life of the iPhone that people love consuming information like this on their phone — the people who buy Kindles buy more books than before they had a Kindle.” Adding that, “Machines like this make you want to consume more media, which is good for us.”

Personally, I think the iPad will provide a boost for the publishing industry, however I do think there will be some downsides to the device. In many ways, I think reading a book on the iPad could be too much of a distraction, especially with all the other applications and content that is only one touch away. One senior writer put it this way:

“I’m not sure how I feel about being on the iPad and reading, because then I’m too connected,” said Jacqui Cheng, a senior writer at the tech site Ars Technica, who believes her thoughts might be disrupted by the constant pings of e-mail.

This comment reminded me of our discussion in class about being “too connected” and the potential dangers of having such advanced technology. We may have (and enjoy) the convenience of having multiple forms of media in just once device, but what about the things we might be loosing in the process, such as having personal interactions with other humans or the experience of holding a book? Will the introduction of devices like the iPad start to weaken our culture? Or will the change be less significant?

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