Wow.

So Apple is currently unveiling has unveiled its iPad, an iPod touch like tablet computer that, so far at least, doesn't seem impressive at all.

And what's with the huge bezel? It's actually ... can I say this about an Apple product? ... ugly.


Photo courtesy of Engadget live blog

The thing I don't get here is... So far, nothing new. This has all been done before elsewhere. I'm astonished this isn't nicer looking or more interesting.

Jobs: "It's so much more intimate than a laptop." Yes, Steve. PC users have known that since 2002. Geesh.

OK, this has to be a joke. He can't really be this excited about this device. Maybe this will be a candid camera moment and all thus joyful faces in the audience will get an actual, happy, surprise. It's a joke. It's gotta be.

Right?

Did he just show an address book that ... looks .... like a book? Ahahahaha. Oh come on. Someone pinch me. It can't possibly be this lame.

But wait, there's more: Widescreen movies take up approximately half the space on the surface of the iPod because the aspect ratio of the device is way off. That just seems odd. This thing should be 16:9.

OK, stats.

It's half an inch thick. It weighs 1.5 pounds. It has a 9.7 inch display with full capacitive multitouch and accelerometer. All as expected.

A 1 GHz Apple A4 chip (What the???). 16 to 64 GB of flash memory. 802.11n. 10 hours of battery life.

The big question, of course, is the price. I'm guessing $999 to start.

But we have to wait. Because Scott "dark son" Forstall is out. To talk about apps.

It runs iPhone apps. Obviously. Stretches them out as you'd expect, if you want. (Apple calls this 2X. It's actually about 4X from what I can tell.)

This stuff is just boring. If Apple wanted this to be a game machine, they should have built hardware controls into that huge bezel.

New York Times apps looks just like the New York Times Reader app for the PC. Which, by the way, looks great on a Tablet PC. I wonder if there's a dedicated Kindle app at launch.

"This is just the beginning." By which he means, "of the apps demos." They're going to go on all day long.

Aside from price, the other big question is availability. I'm guessing not immediate. Using Apple history as a guide, I'd guess they will announce it for the end of February and devices will start shipping from China on February 27 or 28.

I enjoy that the MLB app looks like ColecoVision Baseball. Anyone else notice that?

And am I missing something or does this not do handwriting recognition? You know, like the Windows Tablet PC software has since 2002?

The eBook reader stuff is another example of Apple mimicking real life objects unnecessarily. Creating a "library" page that looks like a real bookshelf and a book interface that visually resembles a book does not make this "easier to use" or "nicer." It makes it unprofessional looking, actually. Childish.

And don't get me started on the superiority of eInk over any screen display. It's no contest unless you're trying to fast track to bad vision.

It's called iBooks (of course). Uses ePub format, which makes sense.

And now iWork. A version of an app suite that no one uses designed for a device that no one should use for productivity. It's the ultimate win-win! (Schiller: Millions of customers love iWork. I really do doubt that. I'm not being snarky. It's just not possible.)

The sheer amount of time they're wasting on iWork is amazing.

I can almost hear Apple's stock price dropping every second this demo goes on.

$9.99 for each iWork app? LOL. Wow.

Some more from Steve...

Syncs over USB just like iPod/iPhone. Not OTA like Zune?

Networking. Here we go. All have 802.11n, but some models will have 3G (as in iPad 3G). Notes that $60 a month is norm for a data connection. Apple's pricing:

250 MB a month for $15

Unlimited data $30 a month

Doesn't seem too shabby. You know, if it's on Verizon.

It's on AT&T. (Wah-waah-waaaaaaaaaaaah)

Good news, though: No contract. It's month to month. Nice! International deals this summer, he says. The device is unlocked.

But the price, Steve. What is the price??

He's building up to it by listing out what it can do...

iPad pricing starts at $499.

That's actually quite aggressive for Apple. In fact, that's pretty amazing. So good for them.

Of course, that's for a paltry 16 GB of storage. The 64 GB version is $699.

The one you want--with a 3G connection and 64 GB--is a more Apple-esque $829.

60 days for non-3G models.

90 days for 3G.

That's worse than I expected.

They're talking accessories now. I think the real cost of one of these things will indeed be $999 when you think about it.

Dock. Keyboard dock. (Nice!) A case. Oh yeah, this is a $999 device alright.

Wait. There's no camera on the iPad? Really? No multitasking?

The Jonathan Ive videos are getting old, sorry. Not every gadget is "magic," sorry.

So.

Without being able to touch one ... eh. It seems like a high priced, unnecessary trinket to me. I like the idea of a video player. It's too expensive for that, and 64 GB should be the starting point, not the upper end. The pricing is aggressive for Apple. The 3G pricing seems good, actually. The interface is obvious, not really innovative.

Overall, this is a letdown. I'd be surprised to see anyone try to claim otherwise. And I'll be looking, of course. :)

And what about iPhone 4.0?