We like things that come in threes.
Whether it's the Holy Trinity, a plate of sliders or a trio of marketing words with a percussive twang that attempts to add thrill — and value — to something not immediately tangible, threesomes are just delightful. And such is the case of Apple's promise for its newly launched tablets, the iPad Air and the iPad Mini.
"Thinner. Lighter. Faster" are the words du jour as tech kids salivate over the improved capabilities of the high-priced toy, although it takes on a sardonic ring when one recalls South Park's uncouth "Bigger. Longer. Uncut."
As it goes with most Apple announcements, leaks and rumors since the summer speculated over the speedy processor and upgraded display. At a press conference at Apple's mission control in California Tuesday, CEO Tim Cook set the record straight, meaning, he bombed once again in living up to the company's reputation during the Steve Jobs era, when mere improvements were cherries on a sundae smothered with innovation that was intended to revolutionize lives — not just make them marginally better.
Seriously, where are the major breakthroughs? Just think of the name iPad Air: Recycling content, aren't we?
It's been three years since the iPad tablet was launched, a product that was at once mocked for suggesting feminine hygiene necessities — iMaxi, iWings, iTampon — and admittedly iPass-ed from being an early adopter and instead joined the choir of critics. But in looking back at the influence of the thing-that-you-didn't-know-would-complete-your-life, the tablet is today indispensable in the kitchen, in the bathtub and in bed, and for binge watching House of Cards and Orange is the New Black on Netflix.
Three years later, we are due for more Apple magic, but with no press conferences in the horizon, Apple's land of infinite possibilities is fading.
As trite as this may sound, Apple indeed solved a problem I didn't even know I had.
But one thing with which Apple has struggled is convincing a large majority of iPad owners that the tablet isn't just for consuming the latest Internet meme, catching up on your RSS feeds and posting selfies. Lack of speed, storage size, a stupid keyboard and cumbersome multitasking functionality has hindered consumers from thinking of iPad tablets as content creation platforms.
Yay for the new iPad Air's faster processor, more robust iSight camera and much clearer retina display. That it's Siri enabled is nice, but let's be honest here: The bitch is substandard. When you really need her, she's conveniently unable to help, probably getting a mani-pedi and drinking a cosmo while flipping through articles on BuzzFeed. She'd be the type of assistant who crushes on Justin Bieber.
iPad Air is 25 percent thinner and four ounces lighter than the previous version, and boasts 72 times faster graphics performance than the original 2010 design. As far as the camera specs are concerned, dual microphones and better backside illumination should offer a richer user experience. But why no fingerprint sensor technology? What gives?
The slightly smaller iPad Mini is almost as robust as its cousin, the difference being less than two inches in screen size and fare. iPad Air prices start at $499; iPad Mini tablets start at $299 without retina display and at $399 with retina display. With a $200 difference between the iPad Air and the iPad Mini, could the latter steal the spotlight from the former? Is two inches (ish) plus retina display worth the extra $200? I am not a believer.
While all these technology developments surely are nice, forgive me while iYawn.
The iPhone launched in 2007, the iPad in 2010. Three years later, we are due for more Apple magic, but with no press conferences in the horizon, Apple's land of infinite possibilities is fading. What we have instead are desperate attempts to remain relevant by trashing the competition.
Good strategy, Tim.