The big news this week was probably the launch of the iPad 2. I settled down to watch the action on Wednesday evening, and was firmly prepared to turn my nose up at the new device. Until Steve Jobs popped out.
Anti-Apple sentiment is typically directed towards Steve, which makes sense given that he’s the CEO and largely the face of the company. I’m far from being an Apple fan boy, but I find it hard to hate a man with glasses, and harder to still to hate a bespectacled man in poor health. It was genuinely good to see him looking so well.
With Steve back, I found myself becoming vaguely excited. "We've been working on this product for a while, and I didn't want to miss it," explained Jobs. Wow. This must be good.
So you can imagine my disappointment when I discovered all they’d done was bung in a couple of cameras and add HDMI out support. Meh. But wait! Those covers. Steve spent an insane amount of time discussing them; it was like one of those Family Guy jokes that intentionally goes on waaay too long. “We designed the case right along side the product. It’s not a case – it’s a cover.” Surreal.
They spent a lot of time demoing the new Garage Band too. Loads of people seemed to think the behind-the-drumkit view was something entirely original and innovative, but as a musician who has dabbled in home recording, I’ve seen it loads of times before. Check out Addictive Drums, for example.
But that’s part of Apple’s thing. They don’t always claim what they’re doing is new or groundbreaking or technically superior or whatever, they just let people think it. The iPad wasn’t the first tablet on the market, for example, but they never claimed otherwise. In that sense, you really can’t blame them. It’s not Steve’s fault people are silly.