Apple iPad, Day 29: Five Things I Like Most About the iPad

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30 Days With the iPad: Day 29

In keeping with the precedent established in previous "30 Days With..." series, I devoted yesterday's post to detailing my complaints and criticisms. Today is dedicated to the counter point of view--a list of my favorite things about the iPad from my 30 Days With the iPad journey.

The iPad has an advantage over previous 30 Days projects (Google Docs and Ubuntu Linux) because I was already familiar with it before I began. While I was essentially new to both Google Docs, and Ubuntu Linux, I have had an iPad since the first day it was available. The challenge for the 30 Days, though, was to shift from using it as an accessory or complementary gadget, and instead rely on it as the sole computing platform.

There were, of course, some bumps along the way, but there are also a few things that I truly appreciated about using the iPad instead of my notebook. Without further ado, here is my list of the five things I like most about the iPad:

The iPad 2 is exceptionally thin and light compared to notebooks and even netbooks.
1. Size. Size does matter. And when you're talking about lugging a device around all over town, the smaller the a point. Carting a 15-inch notebook, or maybe one of those laptops with dual 17-inch displays, may provide more of a portable computing workhorse, but then we get into a semantic debate about defining "portable".

On the other end of the spectrum, you could argue that the iPhone (or an Android or Windows Phone 7 smartphone) are even more compact and portable, or make a case for smaller tablets like the 7-inch Samsung Galaxy Tab.

The iPad--especially the iPad 2--fits nicely in between those two extremes. It is big enough to make it practical, and small enough to make it portable. It has enough power and flexibility to do what you need it to in most cases, yet it is thin and light enough to be carried like a magazine. The same could be said of other similar tablets as well, like the Motorola Xoom, or the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1.

2. Stamina. It lasts, and lasts, and lasts. As if the size issue of the device itself isn't enough, working with a notebook on the go for more than a few hours involves carrying the power adapter and/or a backup battery as well. I can leave my home office with a fully-charged iPad 2, and use it freely for any purpose all day with virtually zero chance of running out of juice. It has the added benefit that if I did choose to carry the power adapter for insurance, the outlet plug and USB cable add little in the way of either size or weight.

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