Let’s face it – the camera has become an integral part of our Web experience. We post pictures of beautiful sunsets to share with friends on TwitPic and we post videos of our kids dancing to James Brown on Facebook. And when we aren’t putting video or pictures on the Web, our friends are. They stream live video on UStream of the concert we had to miss because we had work the next morning. Minutes after the iPad announcement this morning, we all looked around and asked the same thing: Does it really have no camera?
These days, we expect more and more that our devices will do everything we need. Take the iPhone, for example. It is a phone, mp3 player, Web browser and digital camera all in one. When Steve Jobs took the stage to announce the new iPad, he made one thing very clear. The iPad was not here to compete with netbooks, as netbooks, according to him, are simply less powerful laptops. We have to say one thing in defense of the netbook – at least it comes with a camera.
The lack of a camera on the iPad is a serious problem, we think. It cuts a big part of the “read, write, Web” we write about here right out of the equation. Are we really going to have to carry a separate camera with us and connect it to the iPad to get it onto the Internet? And what about Skype, undoubtedly one of the favorites when it comes to keeping in touch with friends and family in far away places? Video chatting is out of the question.
Don’t you worry about the iPad lacking an SD card slot and USB port. Apple has you covered with adapters! How nice of Lord Jobs. Instead of building in two industry standards, users are forced to buy extra items with their new iPad. It’s not like the these standards are large and would take away from the oh-so-important design.But it really is ridiculous that the iPad doesn’t have an SD card slot built-in. USB port, fine. Apple is sticking with its massive dock connector, but an SD card slot — or microSD card slot — would actually open the iPad to some niche markets.
Just think about photographers. The SD card slot would allow them to quickly and efficiently preview their shots on a large screen. The USB port would even allow them to control some DSLRs directly from the iPad with the right app. But nope, can’t do it without an adapter. Even then, they would only be able to use one at a time because of the single dock connector.