After a few more days of use with the iPad here is a more detailed review. You can see my first impressions here: iPad first impressions, as I use the ipad more and more I am changing my thoughts about it. If you have an iPad share your thoughts so far in the comments below.
Is the ipad a breakthrough revolutionary product or just a big iPod touch? That is the question I get a lot. When it was first announced I know people were disappointed. They expected apple to create something so groundbreaking nobody other than them could have imagined. But it still had that Apple hype. Steve jobs has called the iPad “magical” and after just a few full days with it I have to totally agree with him. My first impressions of the ipad were good but not great, it wasn’t until I logged onto wi-fi and bought some apps was I really able to get the full experience.
So what does the iPad really do that makes it revolutionary vs a laptop? It does email, the web, entertainment just like a laptop does, why it is so different? The main difference is in how you interact with the ipad because of the touch screen. It just feels right. I know that might be strange to say, but the web, reading books, even tweeting on a touchscreen feels right. You feel more closely connected to your content, even though it’s digital it feels analog in a way. When ebooks got big a lot of people started to miss that physical feel of the book. This doesn’t give you that exact feel but does bring a new way of interacting with your media that just works.
The other thing that is going to really set the ipad apart is the app store. You can already use the over 200,000 apps that are for the iPhone but the real difference is going to be with the native ipad apps. Developers are already coming up with some really amazing apps and over the next year I think the assortment of apps that take full advantage of touch screen and size will make the ipad shine. Using touch makes most uses (other than writing long reports) so much better and I do think will really change the way we use computers.
So all of this “better feel” stuff is great and all but how would this benefit a photographer? Here is how I will use the ipad in studio and a little video walk through of some features included with the iPad.
For me this is actually going to replace my laptop 90% of the time. I mainly use my laptop when traveling or on the go to check email, browse the web and get on social media like facebook and twitter. The iPad is so much more portable compared to my laptop I have started using it already for most of my on the go work. I am also going to hook it up to my LCD TV in the studio to showcase slideshows when meeting with clients. I have slideshows from most venues that I work in iTunes and will have these loaded on my iPad. When meeting with a client getting married at a specific venue I can quickly bring up a sample wedding and show them. I could have done this on my laptop just the same but this will get people talking. Since it’s such a new product and has so much hype I am sure that will get people talking. Whatever we can do during the first meeting with clients to get their attention and to have them remember us the better. Brides are always meeting with multiple photographers so having something that makes you stick out can make a big difference.
I am going to also offer proofing from the iPad as an alternative to the coffee table books we currently offer. Every market is different but here in the valley most of my clients are very tech savvy. I offer clients a hard bound book with all of the images printed on but give them other alternatives like a DVD proofing system or 4×6 prints. Now I am going to add into the options an iPad that comes pre-loaded with all of the wedding images. This will be an add on cost (and I don’t worry about having the digital files kill print sales, I price my shooting fee to what I need to make without print sales and will charge an extra fee for this as well). I also require brides to purchase a album with us before any other digital products so they have a high quality printed product from us first that showcases the artistry of the printing. This will be something totally different than what most other people are offering (at least for a little while) and again give my studio an advantage over others. When you use cutting edge technology clients do see that and see you as an innovator, they want photographers who are doing something unique and different not just the same old thing. I am sure that as I use it more and more I will change the way I use it for business and find more ways to get use out of it.
Here is a video with a walk through of some apps Apple included on the iPad:
And if you are looking for a new app for your iPad, check out my Portrait 101 guide here:
Portrait 101 iPad app