Nokia. If you can’t beat ’em …

Clone them.

The Nokia N1 is a pretty gorgeous looking Android version of the iPad mini and something Nokia should have done a while back – both as a tablet and as a phone. Android is something that could have easily enabled Nokia to extend themselves well into Apple led smartphone universe of today. But that friends, is water under the bridge.

Of note here are the new USB type-C connector which works in both directions (like lightning) and that manufacturing resides with Foxconn. Could this be a new more nimble Nokia?

Should be interesting to see what happens when this launches in China in February. I’d probably choose this over the Nexus 9 if I was looking at Android tablets …

via The Verge

iPad three point oh yes

Tomorrow the new iPad arrives and I’m rather excited for the upgrade. I am currently using the original model which has been great, but there’s much to like in the third generation.

Instead of simply doing a backup and restore to get everything on the new device, I’m going to take a more considered approach and only put the things I really need for now. There’s plenty to go back and get if I want from two years worth of apps – not too mention all the content I’ve also collected.

Remembering back to the original days with my iPad, it was amazing how quickly I started leaving my laptop at my desk and even at the office. I’m not sure that’s completely possible today thanks to VPN requirements, but I definitely see a strong return of the iPad in my campus and client meetings. LTE should also be killer on my commute … I’ve got two hours a day to burn through on the train and the mega speed boost and enhanced screen for reading are what I’m most looking forward to taking advantage of every day.

ZAGGmate

I actually forgot I had preordered the ZAGGmate keyboard case for the ipad and it arrived today which was a pleasant surprise. Since it works as a case it’s a very simple way to enhance the potential productivity without actually adding something new to carry. I’ve become quite accustomed to typing on the screen over the past months, but its hard to beat real keys for speed.

The ZAGGMate itself sets up in a few seconds. Turn bluetooth on, activate the keyboard bluetooth function and confirm the code and boom. Just like every other bluetooth accessory I’ve tried over the years. The keyboard (on which I’m now typing) feels good. The keys are small and I’m actually making plenty of typos, but this is literally the first thing I’ve used it for and I expect that like all keyboards, I’ll have it figured out shortly. I like the key travel and in general I can see really enjoying having this as part of my kit.

There are some special keys and functions which let the ZAGGmate make the iPad function more like a computer. With dedicated keys for search, home, hiding or showing the keyboard and concealing your screen it’s nice… I also like that there are some command functions like undo for example which I’ve also used while typing this. A quick test of of the setup on my lap and its confirmed the ZAGGmate is a solid release.

More perhaps as I really use it …

zaggmate

Print to any printer from your iPad

Printing from the iPad ... #handy

I don’t actually print very often, but it’s nice to have the option and given the amount of time spent with an iPad in my hand it tends to be my primary screen. As you might already know AirPrint is limited to a small handful of the latest HP printers and given I’ve got an Epson at home, I’m SOL for the time being … or so I thought.

Volker Weber published a very simple howto to get printing going with any printer via Macs running 10.6.5. Follow the instructions … it worked great for me and I printed my first test page within a few minutes.

The iPad

Where to even start …

I’ve been using the iPad since it first shipped and it’s a seriously impressive device. My initial usage like many was over the Easter weekend and I was away with family so while I certainly got a taste, it was not quite the full immersion that followed …

I’ve purchased two iPads. The first to arrive is obviously the Wifi model and I chose to get the 32GB version as it will be used by my wife mainly along with the kids – who love it. When they ship I’ll also have a 64GB 3G unit as my own to use and plan to keep it fairly constantly connected. I’ve been using my old Nokia E71 with Joikuspot as my mobile modem for the iPad while my Mifi is down for the count …

On first startup sadly the iPad reveals it’s greatest weakness which is that you need a computer to get going and of course to sync most of your content. In 2010 this is a ridiculous requirement, but it is sadly still how Apple sees the world. I did not take my Mac with me for my initial weekend of use and had a momentarily panic attack realizing I might not have any way to activate the device and get going. Fortunately my father in law invited me to use his system and within a few moments we cleared the silly dialog and were online. It’s unclear why Apple requires this initial step at all really since I did not sync or register the product through the machine … it seemed to only require a few seconds of connectivity to be ready. Apple was at least kind enough to ship it fully charged.

At home the iPad is truly a stellar device. You can do anything you might want to in a casual situation. I love reading on the large screen and instantly found that the iPad has become my default device for anything online. The speed is awesome! I find it more enjoyable than my few year old MacBookPro for everything and if it was possible to edit photos through some iPad Aperture / iPhoto app, I’d probably use it for that as well. I find typing on the onscreen keyboards to be simple enough. Tapping out email is easy and while it took a few moments to find my ideal seated position, I find I can enter text from most positions now without too much effort. While writing this piece, I chose to pair my old Stowaway Sierra Bluetooth keyboard and have tapped away in the iPad WordPress app. This is actually quite the combination. I don’t really like needing two pieces, but it does meet my current desire to do just about everything on the iPad. ūüėČ

During the week, I’ve commute as I normally do and as regular readers know I have a long enough commute that the usual mobile device battery takes a beating before I even get to the office. The iPad easily crushes this test and I’m only seeing minimal battery loss (unlike the iPhone’s 40+%) and can get to the office with no more than 10% drained … usually considerably more still charged. At the office I’m on Wifi all day (on mail, web, taking notes and reviewing files) and don’t see any reason to recharge, as the battery easily handles my day and has plenty of juice too make it home again with plenty left for some couch time. My only complaint and it’s hard to call it that is that I can’t get on my work VPN. ¬†I’m hopeful that the 4.0 OS release and the upcoming Cisco VPN software will enable network browsing so I can more easily access remote files.

Given the obvious amount of touching, you can expect your iPad to look something like this after a while:

Signs of use #ipad

As gross as that looks it does wipe right off and I admittedly tend to be more conscious of the hand grease now.  That shot obviously caught the light in a pretty clear way.

An easier access to the file system would be welcome, but GoodReader is pretty much handling most of my filing for now. ¬†Apple could definitely tune up the business side of the house on this. ¬†In my travels I’ve encountered a few other enthusiasts all using the iPad in some work capacity. ¬†Everyone gets the initial home use, but we all also want much more on the professional side.

As my kids get a bit older and it’s time to consider a personal computer (not one they share) I will probably have a hard time justifying an iMac over whatever the iPad evolves into. ¬†It’s small and powerful and as I’ve seen already completely native to how my kids interact with technology now.

Lazy print to digital conversions

Just because someone offers a solution to take and digitize your print product doesn’t mean it’s actually a good idea. Take Outside Magazine, a magazine I’ve recently subscribed to and enjoy reading. I was excited to see they offered an iPad edition and downloaded the app.

While the app store preview showed a prior edition, I thought that was just for example and yet post purchase I see that the only issue available digitally is the same one – and one I’ve read previously as a subscriber. Even so i thought it would at least be interesting to see how the iPad edition worked…. Not so great. It was obviously an easy conversion … I’m guessing with minimal manual intervention. ¬†As you can see below, there was absolutely no thought on how to handle links to online content. ¬†In the case highlighted below, there is no way to click on the link or even capture the text. ¬†Not cool.

Outside_Mag_iPad