Weekend tech reading: 10 reasons not to buy an iPad for students

By on July 24, 2011, 11:18 AM

10 reasons not to buy an iPad for students With summer coming slowly to a close, that means back-to-school shopping is in full swing. Your college-bound child is probably in the midst of asking for more and more money to buy the "essentials" they’ll need for class and dorm life. And it’s very likely that they’ve also mentioned needing a device called the "iPad," a little-touted tablet computer manufactured by a small, independent company called Apple. You then may be wondering if, in this day-and-age, the iPad should be considered instead of a laptop... Dealnews

EA says it can't guarantee SW:TOR pre-orders Thursday we reported that EA and BioWare will release three editions of the upcoming MMOG, Star Wars: The Old Republic, which includes the Standard, Digital Deluxe and Collector's editions. Gamers can now pre-order all three editions from EA's online store Origin or via a participating retailer although Origin will sell all digital versions exclusively. Tom's Hardware

PayPal, IFPI and police collaborate to strangle pirate music sites According to an announcement by IFPI, online payment provider PayPal has agreed to help strangle the finances of sites offering unauthorized music. While it appears that the initial targets are Russian and Ukrainian MP3 services, the deal will also be of concern to torrent sites that rely on PayPal to accept site donations. TorrentFreak

Linux 3.0 released; Linus Torvalds explains why you shouldn't care The Linux 3.0 kernel was officially pushed out Thursday night, a milestone that even Linus Torvalds says you shouldn't care about. Torvalds made the announcement Thursday night on Google+, after the release was delayed four days after the discovery of an "incredibly subtle" pathname lookup bug, in Torvalds' words. PC Magazine

Are you listening, Steve Jobs? The Western news media is replete with pithy descriptions of the rapid changes taking place in China: China has the world’s fastest growing economy. China is undergoing remarkable and rapid change. This represents a unique moment for a society changing as quickly as China. You probably read such things in the paper every day -- but if you have never been to China... BirdAbroad

Open-source graphics driver comparison Following last week's benchmarks of Intel's New Sandy Bridge Acceleration architecture with the very latest open-source driver code, it was decided to throw a few Nvidia and ATI/AMD graphics cards into the mix to see where the open-source driver performance is comparatively at for some other hardware. Phoronix

Astronomers find largest, most distant reservoir of water Two teams of astronomers have discovered the largest and farthest reservoir of water ever detected in the universe. The water, equivalent to 140 trillion times all the water in the world's ocean, surrounds a huge, feeding black hole, called a quasar, more than 12 billion light-years away. NASA

Hilarious and surprising predictions of the future…from the 1960sNothing should make a futurist more wary than looking at the history of the profession and seeing how hilarious its mistakes have been. Jetpacks, flying cars, death rays…the future isn’t quite what the past hoped it would be. Singularity Hub

Police to begin iPhone iris scans amid privacy concerns Dozens of police departments nationwide are gearing up to use a tech company's already controversial iris- and facial-scanning device that slides over an iPhone and helps identify a person or track criminal suspects. Reuters

Bulletstorm didn’t make money, but it was worth it Mike Capps, president of Gears of War development studio, doesn't regret Bulletstorm. That game got a lot of hype—and some extraordinarily odd press coverage—when it was released earlier this year. Kotaku




User Comments: 28

Got something to say? Post a comment
Guest said:

What are the odds this DBag works for Micro$oft? I bet 10squids he does.

Word of wisdom: Articles like these does nothing to sway nobody...they only shows how bias one is.

Guest said:

It's easy to spot an Apple fanboy.

pcnthuziast said:

I'm an apple fan. I eat a red delicious every day with lunch!

Guest said:

Sound like pretty legitimate reasons to me (and yes, I own an iPad) - the truth hurts doesn't it?

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Guest said:

What are the odds this DBag works for Micro$oft? I bet 10squids he does.

Word of wisdom: Articles like these does nothing to sway nobody...they only shows how bias one is.

Wow, a lolcat that learned to type.

Staff
Matthew Matthew, TechSpot Staff, said:

What are the odds this DBag works for Micro$oft?

I'd say minimal to nonexistent.

What are the odds you work for Apple?

red1776 red1776, Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe, said:

I'd say minimal to nonexistent.

What are the odds you work for Apple?

+1

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

What are the odds this DBag works for Micro$oft? I bet 10squids he does.

Word of wisdom: Articles like these does nothing to sway nobody...they only shows how bias one is.

Reason #11

Apple's software either doesn't support spell/grammar checking, or you need an I.Q. approaching average -at the very least-to utilize it.

red1776 red1776, Omnipotent Ruler of the Universe, said:

Reason #11

Apple's software either doesn't support spell/grammar checking, or you need an I.Q. approaching average -at the very least-to utilize it.

....Irony or biting satire?

You decide.

Staff
Julio Franco Julio Franco, TechSpot Editor, said:

In my opinion, at least half of those are crappy reasons... "apps are too distracting"??

The other half are valid nonetheless, and it doesn't take a genius to understand that text input on the iPad or any tablet is a pain and that in general, any laptop will be more useful than any tablet for content creation. Tablets are great for certain kind of content consumption (web browsing, reading, etc.) and are supplemental to what you can do with an actual computer. At least that's the way it is for now.

aj_the_kidd said:

To me #2 "It's Not the Best Solution for Note-Taking or Editing Documents" is the best reason for me to choose a laptop over a tablet of any type. Allot of the other reasons, if you can call them that, can also apply to laptops as well IMO. I will say this line sums it all up and applys to all tablets in general

"It's not a "productivity tool" and it's certainly not a laptop replacement."

Tekkaraiden Tekkaraiden said:

I actually talked my boss out of buying her son a ipad instead of a laptop. I told her a laptop would be far more useful for about the same amount of money.

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

I wax nostalgic for the old days, when the iPad simply didn't exist.

Nowadays, I'd simply tell the entitlement addicted little sociopaths, to sell drugs off their paper route for extra money, then buy their own god forsaken piece of iCrap.

I guess the internet has killed paper routes, hasn't it? Yeah well, tough s***.

What are the odds this DBag works for Micro$oft? I bet 10squids he does.

Word of wisdom: Articles like these does nothing to sway nobody...they only shows how bias one is.

Still working on your personal version of English. I see. Or maybe this in "Trollian". Anybody out there that can interpret this gibberish?

does nothing to sway nobody

Isn't the rule about double negatives taught in 3rd grade, or thereabouts?

Anyway, an iPad is what happens after your iPhone gets boned by a Kindle.....

Guest said:

Not a fanboy, but i'll say that because there are those who will always buy the newest from companies like apple, we all get to enjoy the tech trickle down and buy similar devices from other companies. Also, keep in mind that because apple releases new devices like clock work, the competitors try to keep up and also improve their devices, thus driving ever new tech. :)

nuf said.

Xclusiveitalian Xclusiveitalian said:

As a college senior, i can tell you that an ipad wouldn't help at all in class or for homework/papers. For most papers I do tons of multitasking on my computer, and an Ipad would make that extremely difficult. For in class, 50% of my classes don't allow computers, or any electronics. I go to John jay college in Manhattan fyi.

Guest said:

So do I, iPad 2.

dividebyzero dividebyzero, trainee n00b, said:

Still working on your personal version of English. I see. Or maybe this in "Trollian". Anybody out there that can interpret this gibberish?

I think the trick would be to find someone conversant with "Trollian" (i.e. nursed on meth-laced breast milk), but whose brain cell loss rate has slowed sufficiently (i.e. early weaning to Mountain Dew) to still convey the information in a semblance of the English language.

Look on the bright side, another half-generation of so (around 5.5 years in some area's) and most of these people won't have the concentration levels required to go from "quote/reply", add the requite hieroglyphics, and then the hit "submit"

matrix86 matrix86 said:

Ok, so setting aside my negative feelings for Apple:

1. It's Expensive

What isn't expensive? Though I do have to agree that the iPad definitely ranks up there. I personally would go for some of the less pricy tablets, but you have to remember that you get what you pay for.

2. It's Not the Best Solution for Note-Taking or Editing Documents

Neither is any other tablet. As much as I love tablets, let's face it...this isn't what they were meant for unless you have a keyboard or dock of some sort.

3. It's Too Distracting (With all the Games, Apps, 4Gs, Web-Browsing, Twitters, and IMs)

This applies to all laptops and tablets. I can't tell you how many people I saw in my college classes playing solitare while the teacher was giving a lecture...or even IMing (which made it look like they were actually following along, lol).

4. It's Ultra-Portable and Ultra-Droppable

So is any tablet and netbook. Laptops are more likely dropped falling out of a backpack or while being moved from one person to the next, so I will say that tablets probably get dropped more than laptops. And if you drop a desktop...well...you don't deserve to own a computer, lol.

5. What Makes it Desirable to your Kid is What Makes it Desirable to Criminals

Um...this is true for any piece of electronic equipment. Next:

6. It's Meant for the Enjoyment of One Person, Which Means Social Seclusion

Partly true, but once again, this would apply to any smartphone and smaller laptop and any other tablet.

7. Digital Text Books are a Marvel, but There's No Secondary Market

I can't really say much in this area (lacking experience and research) other than this applies to all tablets and laptops.

8. It's a Status Symbol, Plain and Simple

I've yet to develop an opinion on this one. What the article said was true, but this just seems like one of those half-@ssed reasons you pull out of your @ss when you have nothing else to come up with...sorry, but that's just how I see it :P

9. It'll Already be Old Technology by the Time You Buy It

This is true for any new technology, but the iPad is kind of the leader in making it's successor obsolete very quickly.

10. They'll Also Want a Laptop, Too

See number 8

So overall, as much negativity as I have for Apple, i'm going to have to be the mature adult and say this article should have been renamed "10 reasons not to buy A TABLET for students." Whether it's an iPad or not makes no difference. And this is coming from a guy who loves tablets, lol.

aj_the_kidd said:

Bet you feel icky now coming to Apples defense

Pretty much came to the same conclusion as you did. I will say that i think #8 is the the biggest reason why kids these days want an iPad or any other tablet for that matter, nor sure if would say its a reason not to buy it though.

HaMsTeYr HaMsTeYr said:

@Matrix86 Reasoning 2, Cue Asus Transformer XD

But yes, very true at your last comment. When I shared it on facebook I sort of mentioned it was more of a tablet thing and not just an iPad thing.

Guest said:

Its July! Summer is hardly 'coming to a close'.

yRaz yRaz said:

I still haven't found a good reason to buy an iPad.

stewi0001 stewi0001 said:

A netbook in reality is probably the best for students. This is for them in general since it's almost as portable as a tablet but more than a laptop, has a keyboard and the ablity to still BS(with flash even) when class gets too boring. Personal, I would want an uber laptop even though it would be bulky, but that's just nerdy me.

ikesmasher said:

so in other words...the ipad really is a giant ipod touch. amirite?

(im jking-i know the few differences well)

Guest said:

This isnt to knock apple, I'm addressing tablets as a whole when I say, seriously what is the point?

What are they for? Show me some REAL justification for all that money they cost?

Minigames? Please, im a frikkin gamer, if I wanna play games Im not gonna giggle to myself while flinging birds across a 2D landscape, Im gonna stick to my console thats what its for.

Media? hmmm, I can do that with my phone......and that was free!

Pictures? again see above.....

Calender......see above

Work.....nope I cant use it for work....well I can but it takes way longer than just booting up my laptop which was also cheaper by the way.

I really want a shiny tablet, but I just cant see a way of justifying the cost. Every time I see someone with one I just think...MUG!

Relic Relic, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I agree with most here that this could easily be applied to all tablets and not just the iPad. His summary of them being accessories more then productivity tools is nevertheless a valid point. Something most of the public and big media seems to not get.

Guest said:

Its July! Summer is hardly 'coming to a close'.

In terms of summer break for kids it is ending, however seasonally we have couple months to go .

DokkRokken said:

Pen and paper. I've found anything else to be inferior for proper note-taking, save for an audio recorder as a supplement. It was after class that I would transcribe notes onto my laptop to help me review and study.

First year post-secondary students just need some good pens, solid binders, and a few packages of loose-leaf. Tablets just take uselessness to a new high. (low?)

Guest said:

>It's Expensive

The initial cost is expensive, but then again (having used Android nook color myself), it is a much more polished/finished product, and there are many more "native" tablet apps for it than android.

Then again computers used to cost $2000 back in the day, for about $350-$499 Apple refurb store/Craigslist it's not a bad deal really. Trust me, frakking around with Nook color and various "rootkits" was no fun. I got tired of doing the distro swap dance, a tablet product should really be ready to go and have native apps. I ended returning the nook color for ipad.

>It's Not the Best Solution for Note-Taking or Editing Documents

True on initial use, but then again you get used to it and adapt. You can also be like me and use many third party covers with "built-in" keyboards. So it folds open like a netbook. Again not an issue really with Kensington Folio covers,

>It's Too Distracting (With all the Games, Apps, 4Gs, Web-Browsing, Twitters, and IMs)

Yes I agree it can become distracting. But in college sometimes you need a little realxation/distraction just to keep yourself sane and chillaxin, Just be sure to allocate time wisely. And don't forget college life is about meeting people (perhaps your spouse) and yes there's an app for that! :)

>It's Ultra-Portable and Ultra-Droppable

True but so are many other electronic devices. I would think after you shekk iut more $$$, you would be more apt to be "careful" when carrying around an iPad not less.

>What Makes it Desirable to your Kid is What Makes it Desirable to Criminals

True, but then again criminals don't differentiate when they break into your house, They take that which has possible immediate value, And because ipad is new, it holds more value.

>It's Meant for the Enjoyment of One Person, Which Means Social Seclusion

I would say yes, i really wish the ipad had support for multiple user profiles via logins.

I hope win8 tablets will have multiple profile support. As for social exclusion, again portion control yourself (as with any other electronic device).

>Digital Text Books are a Marvel, but There's No Secondary Market

True, however there are many "free" ebooks you can get with the right app, and certain ebook apps allow you to "borrow" public library ebooks/audio books and loan them unto the ipad.

>It's a Status Symbol, Plain and Simple

I think any or all hot products become status symbols by accident. It's not until you actually use it and find benefits that it becomes more than a satus symbol, but something you actually find useful.

>It'll Already be Old Technology by the Time You Buy It

To be fair Apple products have had good resale and high usefulness value, even years after introduction. I bought my kids a used 2nd gen ipod touch for $100 and it takes the place of psp, dvd, and internet device (cartoon network app) in one shot. Best investment ever. Of course I do disable certain apps and monitor their usage like any parent should. ipod or any electronic device does not take precedence on family outings and social gatherings.

>They'll Also Want a Laptop, Too

Most definitely you need a laptop for more productive stuff. But you'll find like I have, an iPad is just another PC like form factor, and it has it's pros and cons like any device. It actually is fun to use and fun to wrangle and discover some productive features out it. I have my outlook synced to my ipad and use teamviewer on ipad to control my laptop/desktop at home.

Again an iPad IS NOT a computer replacement, however it IS a computing replacement. Abd for those quick gotta do it now casual use, iPad fits the bill.

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