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Excitement about iPad: A Large Screen Multi-Touch Platform

With the launch of the Apple iPad, there has been no shortage of reactions and opinions on the device. We feel the most promising aspect of the iPad is that there is now a relatively inexpensive full-sized multi-touch platform that is open to a massive audience of developers. Apple's multi-touch iWork implementation seems to be just the beginning, and it would come as no surprise if Apple were to port more of their applications (iMovie, GarageBand, etc..) over to the iPad in time. The implementation of a File Sharing system for the first time opens up support for these sort of file-based applications.

Joe Hewitt, a prominent developer who had given up the App Store, is excited about the prospects of the iPad.

iPad is an incredible opportunity for developers to re-imagine every single category of desktop and web software there is. Seriously, if you're a developer and you're not thinking about how your app could work better on the iPad and its descendants, you deserve to get left behind.


iPhone game developers have been particularly vocal about their enthusiasm for the iPad. Firemint, the developers behind the massively successful Flight Control game have already committed to an iPad adaptation. Meanwhile, they also believe that the iPad could offer more personal multi-player experiences:

There's something very satisfying about sitting in a circle with family and friends and sharing an experience, whether it's gathering around a camp fire, around the kitchen table or around an iPad. At the moment multiplayer games often physically separate people from each other. You might be in completely different places playing World of Warcraft over the Internet. You might be sitting on a sofa playing console games with friends, but facing a large screen instead of each other. iPad could be different, and once a family has gathered around it to play a board game, we think they are far more likely to try other kinds of games too.

Several forum readers have expressed excitement that music tools akin to the Jazz Mutant Lemur will be possible. In fact, any of the impressive large screen multi-touch videos that we've seen over the past few years could be possible in some form on the iPad: Missile command, Jeff Han, TouchGrind, Warcraft III, MIDI controller.

While the App Store has been a massive success, the scope of individual iPhone applications have restricted in scope by its the 3.5" screen. We expect to see more ambitious titles for the iPad over time.