In all likelihood, a new era of computing began today as Apple’s long-awaited iPad finally stepped from scifi into reality and filled the massive gap between Apple’s iPhone/ iPod handhelds and its richer computing experience of the MacBook laptop range. It begins life with a headstart never enjoyed by any prior new device. As Steve Jobs emphasised when launching the device, more than 75 million people already know how to use the iPad (because it’s essentially identical to the iPhone and iPod, just bigger) and there more than 125 million customers with one-click shopping on iTunes, the App Store and hence, the new iBook store. The iPad adds books and newspapers to the convergence mix and must seriously threaten the business models of all those eReaders announced earlier this month. Apple has created a special web site to disseminate information on the iPad.
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