iPad first thoughts

Despite its European launch being pushed back a month, a couple of friends of InAVate have now had a chance to give us their thoughts on Apple’s new baby.

Stardraw CEO David Snipp has had his iPad since the weekend, and apart from demonstrating Stardraw control on it he has also had some time to test Apple’s pretty bold battery life claims.
Here’s what he said:

I just ran an interesting test, I have had my iPad on sleep for the last 19 hours.

Just to be clear - I had it on with Wifi enabled, and I let the screen go off so 

that if you press it's menu button, you get the swipe to unlock page.

In a command window on my PC, I executed:

ping -t, which will ping that IP address forever. This is, of course, my iPad IP Address.

I would get the occasional "Request timed out", which I would expect for any Wifi device but 99% of the time, the device would respond in less than 100ms. The iPad was NOT connected to ANY power during the 19 hours.

I have gone into such painful description of my test scenario because the results are phenomenal. My battery usage was 90% at the beginning of the test.

It is now at 80% - a reduction of 10% over 19 hours with the Wifi on, which means I could have ran this test for nearly 8 days.

And just as an absolute sanity check, I have just powered down the iPad completely and my ping is now constantly reporting that "Destination host unreachable". Very impressive.

I asked David to what he attributes the performance.

Well, as far as I can tell, it doesn’t “go to sleep” – it just turns the screen off. There may also be some “slow down and use less power” mode of their CPU. Remember, they have their own processor that Intel can’t compete with at the moment in terms of power consumption and heat.

In computers, it is the Screen, then the CPU and then the hard disk and then the rest of the components, such as Radios that take all the power. If they can turn off the screen, have a power efficient CPU, and not use the hard drive, then they’ve saved a lot of power by doing nothing – literally.

Tim Kridel has also had a tinker in his local Apple store now and reports:

I spent a few minutes with an iPad the other day and was quite surprised. Time will tell whether it’s a viable option for pro AV applications, but for reading, e-mail and the Web, it’s convenient and nicely executed.

NOTE: May's edition of InAVate will feature a full length article on the potential impact of the iPad on pro AV.

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