It’s hard not to be underwhelmed by a product that we already had a good idea of what it would be, especially if you’ve ever used an iPhone. But aside from there being little surprises, and an arguably terrible name (there’s nothing poetic about iPad), what I find more interesting are services the device will enable.
I work for Nokia, so I’m either working on or analyzing new service opportunities created by mobile devices. I’ve been using an iPhone since 2007. At this point, the phone itself is no longer what impresses me. It’s the services that others have built on top of the platform that continue to impress. It’s the same for Nokia devices. Sure, our phones have some pretty solid technology. But it’s the services that mobile devices enable that are really compelling. Nokia Life Tools, which provides agriculture, education, and entertainment services in emerging markets, is a good example. So is a mobile service I worked on last year to help HIV positive youth take their medication.
And While the iPad isn’t marketed to address agricultural issues for farmers or medication adherence for HIV positive youth, I cannot help but wonder what services this new device (and I predict future devices much like it) — somewhere between a mobile phone and laptop — will enable given its size, portability, slick interface, and robust application delivery platform. So while the iPad seems somewhat predictable, the new services it will enable are not. And that, I find exciting.