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iPad + Wife Bundle – No Kidding

ipad wife iPad’s are now generally available, so I can’t fathom why people think they can sell it at premium over @ eBay or Craigslist.  But there’s one unusal bundle that caught my eyes:

iPad 32g 3G+WIFE – $799 (oakland downtown)


Date: 2010-05-01, 7:10AM PDT
Reply to: sale-xpydj-1719200072@craigslist.org


Hi, its open box and I just it last night from Apple retail store…
Don’t really know how to use…So…
Any questions: ……    or email:…..

Thanks for looking and have a nice day.

Is this:

  • A “value pack” adding the wife as a bonus to justify the premium on the iPad?
  • A bonus gift to whoever is willing to take wifey?

:-)

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Appholes

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iPray

As they say a picture is worth a thousand words.  Oliver Widder’s Geek And Poke series is one of my favorites… and yes, one cartoon is often worth an entire post… the pic says it all.

I just hope we won’t get in trouble..  now that the word “Pad” is on Apple’s ban list …  (is the entire feminine care industry in trouble?  will they go after NASA for using Launch Pad?)… oh, well, will they claim rights for the use of the letter “i”?

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So You Bought a JooJoo – How Will it be Serviced?

joojoo-tablet

I know, it’s crazy to talk about the JooJoo (formerly known as CrunchPad) a day before the iPad is released.  But the major gadget blogs do, having received a test unit – and that in itself is a bit of a PR coup for JooJoo.  They should enjoy it while it last.   Too bad it won’t turn into sales figures.  According to court documents, Fusion Garage has taken 90 pre-orders for their unit.  That is Ninety, not Ninety Thousand.

There are lots of comparisons, and without going into detail they all go like this:  for the same price as the entry-level iPad, the JooJoo comes with a bigger screen, Flash support, but clearly without the ecosystem and App Store Apple can offer.  Here’s what all these comparisons miss: where will you take it for service?

A $499 device is not a disposable gadget for most people, and guess what, it will inevitably fail.  All gadgets do.  Apple’s support is legendary, even though manufacturing quality id often questionable, Apple owners – fans walk in to an Apple store and walk out happily after full service in an hour. That’s how you turn customers into fans.  I recently had an amazing experience with Dell support (yes, I know, hard to believe) where they sent me a replacement unit for my sleek Vostro V13 before even asking me to return the defective one.

Now, how can you expect the same from a no-name company with uncertain financial background and a lawsuit to deal with?  The specs could be marvelous, but you have to ask yourself:  who you will trust for service: Apple or JooJoo?  And that’s why buying a JooJoo is a huge leap of faith.

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My New Favorite Old Blog…

Jonathan Schwartz, President and CEO of Sun Mi...

Image by TechShowNetwork via Flickr

My new favorite old blog is former Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz, blog.   It’s at the old URL, but has a new title:

What I Couldn’t Say… The “About” section says:

I think I’ve said pretty much everything I could say as CEO of Sun Microsystems. The more interesting stuff was what I couldn’t say.

And that’s what this blog (and maybe a book) is going to be about.

Mostly.

For a taste of his newly found freedom, read Good Artists Copy, Great Artists Steal.

And that’s all have to say… :-)

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Time for Device Independent Data Plans

The Apple iPad event is still on, and the Internet is crumbling… Twitter barely crawls, CoveritLive isn’t exactly live, the major sites providing blog coverage are barely accessible… this is iKill – the day Apple Killed The Net. :-(

But I want to talk about something more important:

iPad data plan

It’s a screenshot from Engadget’s coverage.  Yes, reasonable data plan prices. Except… how many of them do you need?  An iPhone data plan, too?   A data plan for your USB stick for the times you do need a “regular” notebook to work on?

Remember this?

rotaryphone

Yes, phones looked like that.  And there was a time when phone companies (Ma Bell) charged extra when you had more then one outlet in your home….

Remember the early days of cable TV?   You had to ( well, were supposed to) pay extra for each additional cable outlet.

How about the early days of the Internet, before wireless became pervasive?  Yes, ISPs expected us to pay extra for each outlet.

These anachronistic charges are all gone – we pay for the service, no matter what device we use to access it.

So why would wireless access be any different?  We will soon have an increasing number of devices, but the underlying service is the same.  In fact chances are when I use my iPad (which I don’t have), I will not be using my Netbook / Notebook, or browse the Net on iPhone, Google Nexus One … as a consumer I may own a variety of devices, but chances are I will only use them one at a time.

It’s time wireless providers wake up to the 21st century and charge for consumption on a per account (person) basis, not per device.

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Time for Device Independent Data Plans

Now that everybody talks about the iPad, let’s talk about something just as important as the new device:

iPad data plan

It’s a screenshot from Engadget’s coverage.  Yes, reasonable data plan prices. Except… how many of them do you need?  An iPhone data plan, too?   A data plan for your USB stick for the times you do need a “regular” notebook to work on?

Remember this?

rotaryphone

Yes, phones looked like that.  And there was a time when phone companies (Ma Bell) charged extra when you had more then one outlet in your home….

Remember the early days of cable TV?   You had to ( well, were supposed to) pay extra for each additional cable outlet.

How about the early days of the Internet, before wireless became pervasive?  Yes, ISPs expected us to pay extra for each outlet.

These anachronistic charges are all gone – we pay for the service, no matter what device we use to access it.

So why would wireless access be any different?  We will soon have an increasing number of devices, but the underlying service is the same.  In fact chances are when I use my iPad (which I don’t have), I will not be using my Netbook / Notebook, or browse the Net on iPhone, Google Nexus One … as a consumer I may own a variety of devices, but chances are I will only use them one at a time.

It’s time wireless providers wake up to the 21st century and charge for consumption on a per account (person) basis, not per device.

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Steve Ballmer Signs a Macbook – How About the Apple Tablet?

Legend says Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer got really angry last year at an internal Microsoft event, when he saw an employee taking his pic with an iPhone- he grabbed it, pretended to stomp it and made fun of the employee (is he still an employee?) .

Well apparently he is more tolerant with outsiders, in fact may even have developed a sense of humor… watch this video showing Steve Ballmer as he signs a student’s Macbook:


Now that he warmed up to it, I wonder if he’ll go on stage and sign the Apple Tablet Steve Jobs is about to unveil?

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Look Who’s Talking: ASUS, the Designer Brand

asusnx90 Brand vs. Quality. Which Would You Pay For? – I asked recently, making the case that “trusted old brands” like HP are producing inferior quality, while formerly “no-name cheapo” component maker ASUS is becoming a household name.  They are basically doing what Honda, Toyota (and now the Koreans)  did to the car business.

Sure, ASUS rode a good wave becoming the leading netbook-maker, but they are not stopping there. First it was price, then performance, reliability – now it’s design.

“We are looking forward to leading the PC industry into a new era of thought behind computer design,” said ASUS chairman Jonney Shih, after unveiling four new computers at the event. At one point, Shih seemed to allude to Apple as a role model, saying that an overriding focus on design has been the domain of one company in the industry.   (Source: TechFlash)

Now, who’s “the Brand”?

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The Tablet Debate – Situational Device, Take # 764531276534

image Gotta love the new debate on Tablets – it’s not about the CrunchPad, JooJoo or the Apple Tablet anymore.  It’s about whether we need any.  Joe Wilcox declared that The world doesn’t need an Apple tablet, or any other.

Really?  Well, there was this other guy who famously declared:

I think there is a world market for maybe five computers

He obviously proved to be wrong, but somehow this mistake did not break his career: he was legendary IBM Chairman & CEO Thomas Watson, and the prediction goes back to 1943.  (Too bad the famous quote is likely incorrectly attributed to him – but it’s a better story this way)

I suspect Joe Wilcox will prove to be just as wrong as Thomas Watson (or whoever really said that…).  But I’m not going to argue.. cause I’ve done it a zillion times already.  Hack, I even own the Google search for situational device (but hat tip to Imran Ali who coined situational hardware).   Yes, Joe, the tablet will be a “middle product”, not a phone and not a full-fledged computer, either – and it’s all right. It does not have to be.

How many computers do you have in your household?  None of us would own a monster like the one on the pic – but then computers became personal, and we all got one – for the family. Then we got a few more – 2-3-5 computers are not uncommon in a household.  But what about your digital camera, iPod, iPhone, eBook Reader..etc?  We don’t call them computers, despite the sophisticated processing they all do.

The Tablet won’t be a computer, either. Not in the classical sense of the all-in-one multifunctional machine.  It will be a lightweight, convenient browsing, reading device.  Perhaps a “passive” one – but the most comfortable form of consuming information lying in bed, in a lounge chair, perhaps on a float in the pool :-)   A situational device.  In fact many situational devices: one for the road, one for the couch, one touch-based, on driven by voice .. you name it.  We’ll have many of those.  Not because we need them. But because we can.  And that’s progress.