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Consumers around the world waited anxiously for the iPad to hit store shelves earlier this year.  Never before can I remember an electronic gadget having so much buzz surrounding it.  People were talking about it for months and the buzz about this gadget hasn’t seemed to slow down.  There were plenty of opinions about the new electronic wonder and few actually had a chance to try it out before chiming in.  Some claimed that it was just a poor attempt to compete with all of the mini laptop computers that have been flooding the market. Apple did make it available for a few lucky reviewers to get their hands on it at trade shows but the rest of us had to wait patiently.

When March 5th, 2010 came around, thousands and thousands of hungry Apple fans stormed the Apple stores to be the first on their block to own this new miracle of technology.  By the first of May, over a million units had already been sold!  The early iPad sales even outperformed their previous record holder which was the iPhone.

So, it’s been a few months since consumers all around the world started taping away on their iPads.  You might be wondering what the general consensus has been about it.  Did it live up to the hype?  Surprisingly enough, for the majority of users, it’s all that it was promised to be. The majority of users report that they enjoy using it most for web browsing.  It’s often compared to the act of sitting down with a good book.  Books are compact and you can sit virtually anywhere with one and make yourself comfortable.  With a touch screen notebook, you kind of need to find someplace to set the computer.  You can set it in your lap but it’s not the same has holding a book in your hands.  Holding the iPad feels much more like holding a book than holding a computing device.  It is the perfect size at 9.56″ tall by 7.47″ wide and only half and inch thick.  It’s also lightweight at only 1 and a half pounds.

Unlike touch screen notebook computers, the iPad has the endurance of a marathon runner.  With a full charge, the battery will last over 10 hours.  No  laptop can come close to that kind of performance.  Users report that this 10 hour battery life isn’t just advertising hype either.

Another area that the iPad shines is as an eBook reader.  Up until now the Amazon Kindle had a corner on the eBook reader market.  The iPad’s eBook reader software is easy to use and quite customizable.   The number of eBooks available for the iPad pales in comparison to the number that are available for Kindle but that’s not a problem because the iPad supports eBooks that are formatted for the Kindle.

There’s one aspect where the iPad doesn’t match up to touch screen notebook computers and that’s data entry.  The iPad comes with a little app that looks like a qwerty keyboard but it’s not the easiest to type on.  You don’t have the same tactile feel that you get from typing on a regular keyboard and it’s easy to make mistakes.  Touch screen notebooks definitely have the edge in this area.  They allow you to type on the standard keyboard or you can make your selections by touching the screen. In my opinion, this is kind of the best of both worlds.

So the answer to the question of whether the Apple iPad is just another touch screen notebook is no.  It’s in a class by itself.  Nothing else on the market compares to it.  It’s not really a question of whether to buy an iPad or a touch screen laptop.  There is a place for both gadgets and I personally own and use them both.

Now, about how to get a free iPad. I’m sure that by now, you’ve all heard about people who “claim” to have received free iPads. I bet you’re wondering if this is really possible. Well technically it is possible but I must tell you that doing it is a real pain in the neck. Basically you have to first register for a service. Then you have to sign up for a bunch of trial offers with the services partner programs. They you have to get your friends to do the same thing and sign up for a bunch of trial offers. Each time you or a friend signs up for a trial offer, you will get points. When you have accumulated enough points, you’ll get your free iPad. So, while it is possible to get a free iPad, it’s highly unlikely that you’ll actually be able to fulfill all the requirements to do so. My advice would be not to waste your time.

Thanks for dropping by my site on touch screen laptop computers. I hope to see you around here again real soon.

I receive compensation due to affiliate links or endorsements on this website: Disclosure of Compensation