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Friday, April 9, 2010

iPad hands-on, Notion Ink Adam, and reading electronic books

I've just had a chance to touch my boss' iPad.

First of all: it's really fast. I'm pretty sure it's faster than my Nexus One phone. It's either faster CPU, or maybe a faster graphic card. Its touch-screen is perfect in terms of responsiveness. It's nothing like a resistive screen of Archos 5 Android table which I happily sold on Ebay (I'm not even talking about awful resistive screen of Camangi WebStation.)

As a photographer I have above-normal requirements for visual quality of screen. I cannot work on bad PC screens. I'm very sensitive to pixelation of a screen, I hate screens on which individual dots are clearly visible. This makes many LCD screens unusable for photo editing. This makes Camangi WebStation's screen almost unusable. Another critical thing is a sharpness of black-white boundaries (i.e. text sharpness). I think that otherwise beautiful screen of Nexus One phone suffers from a bit blurry text. See Secrets of the Nexus One's screen: science, color, and hacks and my blog.

In terms of screen colors iPad's screen is very good. I probably didn't play with it long enough, but the fact it's screen is much bigger than Nexus One, makes it way more comfortable for browsing sites, looking at pictures, etc. (I like little "Select all", ... pop-ups which are displayed when you touch and hold input boxes.)
What I noticed, however, is a significant pixelation. It's not as bad as on 7" Camangi WebStation, but noticeable worse than on (smaller) Archos 5 Android tablet. It makes me really doubt iPad is a good device for reading books online. I would advise to stick with Kindle if you have one, or to wait for promising new Notion Ink Adam Android tablet   - a very first device to use Pixel Qi screen. (I'm eagerly waiting for Mirasol screens)

Note, that I didn't touch numerous slick interface features of iPad, good Exchange integration, etc., etc. But to me its claim to become better e-Book reader than Kindle does not stand.