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Meet the iPad and iOS 5 by Jeff Carlson

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Introduction

Given Apple’s advertising budget and ubiquitous ads, plus an enormous amount of media attention, it’s still difficult to determine just what an iPad is. Is it a media player or a business machine? Does it replace a laptop? There are other tablet computers on the market, as well as “netbooks” that act like small laptops, and yet the iPad has captured people’s imaginations (and pocketbooks) like few other devices I’ve seen.

I’ve owned an iPad since the first day it was available, and I still have trouble explaining it to people in just a few words. But I think I’ve figured out just what’s so special about it.

The iPad is the first real spontaneous device. It’s not as bulky as a laptop, and doesn’t need to be anchored in one room of ...

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