As an experiment, I’ve written this post on the iPad, so if in fact the keyboard functionality is as much a pain in the ass as critics have said, you’ll know when my review devolves into a series of curses and short sentences.
Having an iPad is like walking around with a newborn: it’s heavier than it looks, everyone wants to touch it, and you feel conspicuous on the subway. And like a baby, this thing gets dirty quickly. My greasy fingerprints appeared all over the screen 10 minutes into firing it up. I already smeared it with a little French cheese by accident, which is surely a common smudge for this particular device. (Why yes, I do live in Park Slope!)
iBooks: So far the app is B+. I love the sample chapter feature. Yes, the Kindle has this too. But the Kindle’s a single-use device, and none of my friends buy single-use devices. I’m not fond of the title selection: David Rakoff and Elias Canetti are both on my to-read list, but no luck; it’s now retitled my to-read-in-print list. I can’t wait for publishers like New Directions and NYRB Classics to add their titles. At the same time, I’m happy to report a bunch of FSG books like The Ask and The Three Weissmanns of Westport are up and ready for purchase. I’ll be reading a few different titles in the app this week to get a feel for it. I expect it will be similar to my hit-and-miss approach with reading books on the iPhone. (In that case, the only book I could get through was, appropriately enough, Steve Knopper’s Appetite for Self-Destruction. Maybe I only like ebook texts which performatively comment on their reading format.)