iPad needs a Moses device

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
Apple needs a device to free the 'slaves', the iPads that need a host Mac or PC to function. Not a full computer but more like a dumb drive & router type device. This would be a zero config device for new users who wouldn't even have a host computer.



- A headless device

- Looks like a Time Capsule

- an ethernet port to connect to a cable/DSL modem

- Wireless N to connect to the iPad

- Can do over the air sync.

- 3 USB ports to connect to the iPad for faster transfers, a printer (device would be a print server), a camera for photo downloads, webcam, a keyboard for faster data entry, etc.

- SD card slot, to DL your photos so you don't have to have the little dongle as well

- A built-in hard drive for backups, hold music/apps/photos/books that won't fit on your iPad

- You get an iPad app to let you manage the document and media on this device





1TB version for $299

2TB version for $399

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 10
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,224moderator
    Except where do you get all the content that's supposed to go on it? You can't download anything with the iPad except itunes media so presumably you already have the content somehow but the only way you could have it is if you had a computer.



    External storage alone doesn't change the iPad from a slave to a master device, it needs to have been designed as a master device from the outset.



    I see some benefits to the setup you're talking about but Apple should have built the iPad as a single 64GB model for $599 with a USB port and built-in SD card reader that had the ability to manage a filesystem and allowed mobiles to sync to it.



    Then the external storage is a slave dumping ground, not a remote master filesystem.
  • Reply 2 of 10
    outsideroutsider Posts: 6,008member
    Disregarding the purpose of the external storage (even if it's mostly used for video/music streaming and other large files), I think it would be wise for Apple to provide a low cost solution for novice users to get an iPad without investing in a computer. Or for people to ditch their netbooks, aging desktops, for a solution like this.
  • Reply 3 of 10
    macroninmacronin Posts: 1,174member
    Where to get media aside from iTunes?



    Torrents? A USB SuperDrive attached to the 'Moses device' USB port, working in conjunction with a Handbrake App for the iPad? Two thoughts that come to mind…



    I think a Time Capsule/MobileMe combo, if done right, could be the 'Moses device' Outsider is thinking about…
  • Reply 4 of 10
    outsideroutsider Posts: 6,008member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MacRonin View Post


    Where to get media aside from iTunes?



    Torrents? A USB SuperDrive attached to the 'Moses device' USB port, working in conjunction with a Handbrake App for the iPad? Two thoughts that come to mind?



    I think a Time Capsule/MobileMe combo, if done right, could be the 'Moses device' Outsider is thinking about?



    Well, I don't think Apple would condone the use of torrents to acquire media. Another thing that could make sense is have a built-in DVD/CD drive that people would ingest their current media. Plus iTunes purchases would present the option to download to your device only, if one is detected, or to the device+iPad.
  • Reply 5 of 10
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,224moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Outsider View Post


    Disregarding the purpose of the external storage (even if it's mostly used for video/music streaming and other large files), I think it would be wise for Apple to provide a low cost solution for novice users to get an iPad without investing in a computer. Or for people to ditch their netbooks, aging desktops, for a solution like this.



    I agree entirely that the iPad should have been the solution to the netbooks (15,000 people and counting would also agree http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQnT0zp8Ya4 ) but they've built it wrongly from the outset and as usual, it's up to consumers to try and figure out ways to make it fit what we want instead of letting Apple know that they've simply done it wrong this time and need to sort it out.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MacRonin


    Where to get media aside from iTunes?



    Torrents? A USB SuperDrive attached to the 'Moses device' USB port, working in conjunction with a Handbrake App for the iPad? Two thoughts that come to mind?



    I think a Time Capsule/MobileMe combo, if done right, could be the 'Moses device' Outsider is thinking about?



    All of those functions require the external device to be a computer. If you assumed that the iPad was the processing element, neither Handbrake nor torrent software is available for iphone OS and Handbrake would be way too slow anyway. The 1GHz A4 is about 1/3rd the speed of a 1.6GHz G5 so you're talking about an order of magnitude slower than any modern Mac. If it takes you 15 minutes to rip a DVD now, it will take over 2.5 hours on the iPad.



    If the external was a computing device, it needs to run an OS - Apple ain't going to make a cheap Mac system that's fast enough to do any useful job when that's pretty much what the ATV is and it's over $200 with a 160GB drive.



    Nope, what Apple wanted to build was a big ipod touch/ebook reader to rival the Kindle and that's what the iPad is. It won't have any effect on the 35 million units per year netbook market. It will probably take a significant portion of the 3 million units per year ebook reader market though.



    We're just going to have to hope that an innovative company comes along to deliver the goods for a proper touch slate that will be the only machine some people will ever need. I'd say HP is the best bet so far.
  • Reply 6 of 10
    I think the current iPad is fine for what it is. I certainly will buy two (one for the wife) and we will put them to good use. People who don't like it don't have to buy it, but just because a few people hate it doesn't make it a bad device. I recall all the fuss over the MacBook Air (which I put to heavy use daily) and the iPhone. It was pretty intense, especially for the MBA, even right here on AI.



    I also said elsewhere that I see the iPad going solo somewhere in the future, just not yet. It will gain printing, and external storage. Sorta like the idea here of a Timeachine-esque support device for it. Backups, router, several USB ports for connectivity.



    Apple has their current package with the App store, now iBooks Store and of course Music Store. They are developing things. If you aren't happy with the current package, don't buy into it and provide constructive feedback.
  • Reply 7 of 10
    dfilerdfiler Posts: 3,420member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Outsider View Post


    Apple needs a device to free the 'slaves', the iPads that need a host Mac or PC to function. Not a full computer but more like a dumb drive & router type device. This would be a zero config device for new users who wouldn't even have a host computer.



    - A headless device

    - Looks like a Time Capsule

    - an ethernet port to connect to a cable/DSL modem

    - Wireless N to connect to the iPad

    - Can do over the air sync.

    - 3 USB ports to connect to the iPad for faster transfers, a printer (device would be a print server), a camera for photo downloads, webcam, a keyboard for faster data entry, etc.

    - SD card slot, to DL your photos so you don't have to have the little dongle as well

    - A built-in hard drive for backups, hold music/apps/photos/books that won't fit on your iPad

    - You get an iPad app to let you manage the document and media on this device





    1TB version for $299

    2TB version for $399



    Isn't this pretty much what a time capsule already is? Just sync or transfer data via any of the included wired or wireless network connections. Seems like the missing piece is software rather than hardware.



    Then again, we've been waiting how long for phones that backup their contact lists via their built in network connection? Imagine... never loosing your phone numbers, ever, with no configuration at all, none! Apparently the most obvious of basic features don't always get implemented.
  • Reply 8 of 10
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,224moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post


    People who don't like it don't have to buy it, but just because a few people hate it doesn't make it a bad device. I recall all the fuss over the MacBook Air (which I put to heavy use daily) and the iPhone. It was pretty intense, especially for the MBA, even right here on AI.



    The Macbook Air doesn't sell all that well btw - it's about 20% of Apple's laptop shipments tops. Apple is happy with it because it sells to a low volume consumer and like the ATV, expectations are low. It certainly doesn't mean they are bad products in their own right, just that not many people want/need them. iPad is intended to be a high volume product (as is the ATV) and if it sells in a low volume (3-4 million in the first year) then it's a failure IMO.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post


    I also said elsewhere that I see the iPad going solo somewhere in the future, just not yet.



    Naturally the iPad is a precursor to something more fully fledged, even if it's not from Apple. My concern is that they haven't done enough to push it far enough on towards that goal and in the heat of the netbook craze, now was when it needed to be done.



    When people buy this and start to use it as a main device, they will come across barriers. If they need to save a webpage - you can't, download a PDF - nope, upload an image - nope, batch upload with a Flash uploader - nope, override a mobile site - nope, no user-agent controls, delete a photo - nope, if you could upload a photo, you may find you don't have it because it's on your computer (where you have to manage the photos) so you have to sync or just end up using the computer since you're having to switch it on anyway.



    Whenever this device gives you a barrier where your only option is to resort to using another computer then it's pointless. The iphone has those limitations but you expect them when you are out and about - it's still a great smartphone. You're going to be using the iPad in your house the way you would use a laptop.



    They can make some refinements before launch but we'll see. I think what was demoed was it. It's such a simple line between slave and master device but it's the difference between primary and tertiary purchase and an order of magnitude difference in target audience.
  • Reply 9 of 10
    vineavinea Posts: 5,585member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    I agree entirely that the iPad should have been the solution to the netbooks (15,000 people and counting would also agree http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQnT0zp8Ya4 ) but they've built it wrongly from the outset and as usual, it's up to consumers to try and figure out ways to make it fit what we want instead of letting Apple know that they've simply done it wrong this time and need to sort it out.



    Just like Apple's epic fail of not producing an xMac. Not.



    There's a reason that Apple has not made this a primary computing device and it's because they still need to sell iMacs and MBPs.



    If the iPad was a netbook replacement then Apple would join HP and Dell in cannibalizing their own notebook sales. This allows them to have a 90% netbook replacement WITHOUT hosing their own iMac and MBP sales.



    Quote:

    Nope, what Apple wanted to build was a big ipod touch/ebook reader to rival the Kindle and that's what the iPad is. It won't have any effect on the 35 million units per year netbook market. It will probably take a significant portion of the 3 million units per year ebook reader market though.



    Except that the iPad can compete effectively with those netbooks purchased as secondary devices as opposed to as cheap laptops. I expect a big impact to the netbook market and the big losers will be HP, Dell, etc as the only profitable netbook sales (as secondary devices) will be impacted leaving them with a much higher ratio of sales as cheap notebooks.



    Quote:

    We're just going to have to hope that an innovative company comes along to deliver the goods for a proper touch slate that will be the only machine some people will ever need. I'd say HP is the best bet so far.



    Not likely. The innovative company will be Apple when they make MBA/MB/MBPs tablets as well. The MBA would make an awesome convertible. The only slate Apple needs is the iPad.
  • Reply 10 of 10
    vineavinea Posts: 5,585member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    When people buy this and start to use it as a main device, they will come across barriers.



    It's not meant to be a main device.



    Quote:

    If they need to save a webpage - you can't, download a PDF - nope, upload an image - nope, batch upload with a Flash uploader - nope, override a mobile site - nope, no user-agent controls, delete a photo - nope, if you could upload a photo, you may find you don't have it because it's on your computer (where you have to manage the photos) so you have to sync or just end up using the computer since you're having to switch it on anyway.



    I don't see why it won't be able to save a PDF or upload an image (other than Flash based uploaders) or delete a photo. The 3.2 SDK has shared files. That you need to switch on your computer (preferably a Mac) for some things is a combination of design and, as you mentioned, processing power.



    Quote:

    Whenever this device gives you a barrier where your only option is to resort to using another computer then it's pointless. The iphone has those limitations but you expect them when you are out and about - it's still a great smartphone. You're going to be using the iPad in your house the way you would use a laptop.



    Or in a meeting or on an airplane or...



    Slates are pretty much useless anyway so they might as well be very light, last a long time and do a few things well. To me, as a multi-slate owner (a motion, a ruggedized and a knee pad), the iPad looks awesome. of course, my expectations going in was fairly low but the way the interaction works converted me.



    For real replacement of a laptop you need a convertible.



    Quote:

    They can make some refinements before launch but we'll see. I think what was demoed was it. It's such a simple line between slave and master device but it's the difference between primary and tertiary purchase and an order of magnitude difference in target audience.



    Well they sure as hell weren't targeting the cheap notebook market which is a major part of the netbook market.



    So that leaves the target audience as those that bought netbooks as secondary computing platforms for light duty. For that, the iPad seems to me to be quite nice. I'll know for sure when I hold one but from what I've seen the user experience will be stellar.
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