500 days of iPad ownership

500 days of iPad ownership

Summary: After nearly 500 days of iPad ownership, how am I using my iPad today?

TOPICS: iPad, Mobility

Does the shine wear off the iPad after a few months of use?

Technology writer Dan Frommer shares his story about 500 days of iPad ownership. Since I've had my iPad for over 470 days I thought it would be interesting to see how Frommer's experiences match up with my iPad usage.

Frommer's kicks off with a comment that I find interesting:

"After almost a year and a half with the iPad, I now consider my usage at 'normal everyday' levels."

Basically, he's using it less than he was when he first got it (here's a link to his thoughts on the iPad after 100 days), but more than he did a year ago when he went through a phase of feeling bored with the iPad (here are his thoughts on the iPad after 300 days). I can't say that I went through a 'bored' state mostly because for me the iPad quickly became a part of my daily workflow.

"Specifically, I use the iPad for about 30 to 60 minutes per day, almost entirely at home."

Once again my usage differs from that of Frommer. I'd say that my average daily iPad usage is about an hour a day, but unlike me, Frommer seems to be using his iPad more as a content consumption device:

"At home, about 75% of the time I spend on the iPad is in the Safari browser, reading a few aviation websites for fun before I fall asleep every night."

I'd say that the largest chunk of my iPad time is spent in the Safari browser, but it's not 75%. I access Facebook and Twitter via my iPad, handle a LOT of email, organize my day using Pocket Informant, do a lot of writing in IA Writer and much, much more. This 'iPad is a content consumption tool' is a stupid, worn-out trope in my opinion. How do I know? Because I've created a lot of content on the iPad!

"I have a lot of apps - dozens - but I generally don't use them often, or for very much time."

I have dozens of apps too, and I'm getting to the point where I need a clearout (especially of Twitter and IM clients). It is hard to find the 'best' app and this does lead to a build-up of detritus.

"Of the apps I use frequently, I mostly check Twitter and the App Store, and watch a few minutes of TV using the Time Warner Cable app."

"I spent the month of July watching NBC's Tour de France live streaming TV coverage on the iPad for a few hours a day, and it was great."

"I have downloaded a few magazine apps (Bloomberg Businessweek, New York, Esquire) but barely use them."

All content consumption. Interesting. If your iPad is purely a content consumption device (like a TV or a radio and so on) then it's not surprising that how much it is being used diminishes because there's only so much time you can devote to content consumption.

"I haven't read an e-book in months, and haven't finished one in about a year."

I prefer to read on my Kindle, but I will read on the iPad ... the screen isn't as bad as people (and Amazon) make it out to be, and what you lose in terms of glare you gain in terms of easy zooming. I do a lot of reading, both professionally and for pleasure

"I haven't played an iPad game in months. It's too heavy to hold up for very long, which makes many games tedious. Are there even any great iPad games?"

My staple games are Angry Birds (3 stars on all the levels, baby!), Angry Birds Seasons (again, full house of stars!), and Zombie Gunship.

"I also use the iPad on longer trips."

Same here, but I still take my laptop and iPhone (and Kindle usually).

"I got rid of my iPad 3G data plan."

Still on mine, but I probably don't make as much use of it as I should.

"I am excited for iOS 5 and the iPad 3."

More iOS5 than iPad 3 personally.

"I still think the iPad is the future of computing."

The iPad is computing in the now ... computing of the future will be different to computing in the now.

"I think the biggest thing that's still missing is great third-party iPad software."

Ummm ... have you actually looked in the App Store? Seriously!

I think everyone is different and that how people use a device will vary. Also, how people use the iPad, and how little or much they find it to be useful in their day, will decide whether they upgrade. What's going to be interesting to watch with the iPad is what happens in a few years down the line ... will people be upgrading their owl hardware? Judging by how many people I know who traded in their iPad for an iPad 2 (I didn't, I'm still on the first-gen model), people are finding them useful enough to justify the cost of upgrading.

BTW, this piece was written on my iPad ... just to make a point! Take that all you people who think the iPad is all about consumption! :)

Topics: iPad, Mobility

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  • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership

    <I>???I still think the iPad is the future of computing.???</I>

    I have to disagree with him. When it's time to get down and dirty, I still prefer a desktop or laptop to work with.
    The one and only, Cylon Centurion
    • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership

      @Cylon Centurion Indeed. Future of computing. Almost fell off my chair.
      • What's really funny


        What I find the funniest is that Adrian actually considers his no value added rehashes of reports from other websites and piggybacking on other writer's work to be "content creation" :-)
    • iPads are cars, PCs are trucks.

      Sometimes you need a truck, most times a car will do.
      • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership

        @baggins_z <br><br>If that's the case, iPads aren't cars, they're horse and buggies - with severely limited functionality, a limited user experience, and a gimped web experience as well.
        The one and only, Cylon Centurion
    • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership

      If you've every tried to make a Keynote/Presentation on an iPad vs PowerPoint on a laptop with a mouse, you'd understand why an iPad is not the future of computing.
      • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership


        What's Powerpoint? Why should I care about it?
      • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership


        It's kind of the de-facto office app for presentations. ;)
        The one and only, Cylon Centurion
      • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership

        If you ever get a job, Powerpoint is what you will be looking at on the 70" plasma in the conference room. That and the Adobe Presenter. And the ocasional BSOD when the JAFO screws up by not optimizing their system.
    • I would have said the same thing about PC's verses mainframes

      @Cylon Centurion ... Back in the CP/M and DOS days. Especially on XT's and 286's:). Point being today's Tablets are the what 286 of the tablet generation? We can argue that of course but the point still stands tablets like desktops will grow in both hardware capabilities, applications, and OS after all we are blank and gone from CP/M:)

      Pagan jim
      James Quinn
      • But what will

        @James Quinn
        the iPad be when it finally grows up?
      • That is incorrect, Mr. Quinn

        @James Quinn

        The afore mentioned systems you speak of have one thing in common: an easy an efficient data entry device known as a keyboard.

        A tablet is both less practicle, and less comforatble to use as a data entry device for any length of time.

        You did notice that the author stated he wrote [i]this[/i] article on an ipad, not all his articles.
        Tim Cook
    • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership


      Actually, I've viewed quite a few Power Point presentations on my iPad using Keynote. I suspect savvy office warriors would display those PP files on that 70 inch Plasma HDTV wirelessly using AirPlay and with the assistance of an Apple TV.
    • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership

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  • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership

    Sadly, even though the appstore has tons of nice apps. The best one's you just can't get from apple. IOS is lacking some minor features that would truly make it a good mobile ios. Features that would help in the performance and use of your device. Such as DirectClose from Cydia, which will allow you to actually close an app instead of it still residing in resident memory with IOS. The multitasking is nice but I have not seen a factory "close app" feature unless installed from Cydia. You can get a better effect than the drop down status bar from IOS (that just might have to be pulled from the IOS for infringement soon) can be replaced with a nicer feature by installing LockInfo and it's plugins, also not available from the appstore or apple. Giving you HTC like features and a MUCH nicer shadescreen than the pulldown bar. There is also SBsettings from cydia that gives you quick access to stop/starting functions like Wifi, Edge, 3g, Data, Haptic, AutoCorrection on/off that is just missing from your IOS normally. Sure it has by factory a way of turning these things off but you have to navigate through a bunch of
    areas to just turn these on an off.

    You would feel more productive once you installed some of these features and would probably feel like you've just rediscovered your device once you see the real customization options that you can do with it once you bypass the apple nazzi's.
    • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership

      Close an app in iOS? Just tap and hold an app icon (in the bar where running apps are shown).
      • LMAO!

        Close them babies one. at. a. time.
        Thank god for jail breaking!
  • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership

    I'm curious what keyboard, etc. you use to create content with -- I experimented with the on-screen keyboard at my local Apple Store, and I just couldn't see myself writing anything of any length on it. I have some hobby sites (http://threestoogespictures.info, http://bestcleanfunnyjokes.info, etc.) that I'd love to create content for on an iPad -- what do you recommend?
    • RE: 500 days of iPad ownership

      You will get used to the on-screen keyboard fairly quickly. Just let your muscle memory catch up.
      I also have the keyboard dock which works great. I used it a lot more in the beginning however, because once you get the hang of the built in keyboard, their really isn't a need to plug in another one. It looks cool sitting in the dock though ;
  • PCs are trucks.

    More like PCs are cars and tablets are bicycles.