12 Reasons Why the iPad is Useless

I’m typically a fan of Apple, having been a loyal consumer of their iPod for six years, impressed by their Mac Books, and amazed by their marketing skills. But then they came out with this iPad thing. People won’t stop talking about it. It’s all over Twitter. And to be honest, Mashable has flooded their social media blog with iPad posts (talk about off topic).

Frankly, I don’t get it. Sure, it’s pretty. And yeah, it’s a kinda cool device. Kinda. But does it really deserve the hype it’s been getting? If you’re one of those people who thinks retweeting something about the iPad will make you look cool, here are the reasons why, in my opinion, the iPad is useless.

1. General fail

It’s a cross between the iPhone and a laptop, combining the inferior features of each. It doesn’t fit in your pocket, doesn’t have a keyboard, can’t make phone calls, can’t take pictures, and the most affordable model (still $500) only has WiFi. Fail on all accounts.

2. The iPad doesn’t compare to a book

Reading a novel is just not the same without holding a book and turning the pages (though to be fair, this also applies to the Kindle or other eBook readers). And at 1.5 pounds, the iPad makes for quite a heavy book. Or think of it this way: if you spill something on a page in your book, it only affects that page or two. But if you spill something on your iPad, EVERY PAGE is smudged. Think about it.

3. The iPad is expensive

People keep saying that the iPad is very affordable, with options between $500 and $800. With Netbook options in the $300 range and smart phone options in the $200 range, I question these people’s basic math skills.This quote from CNET says it all: “Logically, you know the iPad’s dimensions are no less portable than a book. But when a book costs between $500 and $800 and is made of glass, you treat it differently.”

4. Limited iPad battery life

Touch screens generally run out of battery quickly. So although the iPad promises 10 hours of battery life, your books won’t run out of batteries after a 12 hour flight. Even the Kindle will last for four days without needing a recharge. So there are better options available.

5. iPad doesn’t compare to a laptop

If you’re at home, and you need to look something up really quickly, you go to your laptop. It has a keyboard, which is much quicker than touch screen, and you’re already used to your browser interface. Hence, at home, there is no need for an iPad.

6. iPad doesn’t compare to a phone

If you’re out and about, and you need to look something up really quickly, you take out your phone. Either you have a smartphone with 3G coverage or an internet-ready phone. No WiFi necessary. And usually, we already have an app for that. Hence, away from home, there is no need for an iPad.

7. The iPad doesn’t run flash

REALLY??? Most streaming videos are run in flash. Many websites use flash, although according to Gizmodo, “the internet is starting to look different” to accommodate the iPad. REALLY??? This is what I call ridiculousness. It’s called a Netbook, people. It supports flash, has a keyboard, and it costs around $200 less.

8. The name iPad is too easy to make fun of

When Apple announced the iPad’s release, the top trends on Twitter were #iMaxiPad and #iTampon. Enough said.

9. Paying extra for the internet

There will be two 3G service options for the iPad: $15 a month for 250MB of data, or unlimited data for $29.99 a month. Not to mention that you have to pay extra for a 3G-capable iPad. This is on top of your home internet/cable/DSL bill and your cell phone bill. Is this really necessary?

10. There is no camera

The iPad doesn’t have a camera. There’s no front facing camera for video chatting, there’s no back facing camera like the iPhone; again, you might as well use your phone, making the iPad unnecessary.

11. The iPad is awkward to carry around

It’s not just the fact that it’s an awkward size between an iPhone and a laptop, or the fact that it’s 1.5 pounds and therefore heavier than most books. It doesn’t really fit in your hand too well, and you can’t set it down on your desk so that the screen faces you (like a laptop). And to bring it out with you, you’d have to awkwardly just carry it around or bring a large purse, a backpack, a laptop bag, or a murse (man purse).

12. People are just a little too obsessed

Do you really want to be one of those people who falls for the latest fads because of those “social media experts” on Twitter? Wait a little while. See what your friends who fell for it have to say about it. If we’d waited for our friends to tell us in the 90’s, “The Furby is f’ing freaking, I had to take the batteries out so it would stop harassing me,” we’d all be $25 richer.

Feel free to agree or disagree in the comments below. What else can you add to the list?



  1. Unhappy iPad User says

    I agree the iPad is useless
    – iTunes deleted all my music and movies
    – it wont hold a charge
    – I cant quite out of iTunes
    – it wont connect to my corporate network

    My iPad had become a very expensive paper weight, what a SCAM!

  2. A9909752 says

    The funny thing is once you actually get an Ipad you realise how many of your arguments are based on guess work rather than experience and how many of them are untrue.

  3. says

    Good luck trying to upload an image or other file on a website using a regular standard web form if you are using one of these suckers.

    Apple has made sure that every single website has to develop their own special “app” that the visitor has to install and use for that, instead of their normal browser.

    Meanwhile any pc-user already has apps that does this, they are called:
    (well these last 10-15 years at least)

    The web need iPad like it needs a betamax.

    But kudos for helping kill flash, at least.

  4. Richard says

    The filesystem design is what makes it useless to me – each app having it’s own dedicated storage, makes it very tricky to manipulate files between apps. You can kind of work round it a bit with dropbox or whatever if the app supports it, but for offline usage (we were looking at it for travelling reps where a 3g connection is not  always available) it is hopeless.

  5. koltonswift says

    I have something to add to the facts: The iPad can’t play videos, its the exact same thing as iPod Touchs and iPhones, it just has bigger screen and cost $200 – $500 more. Just because it has photo booth or whatever, it costs $500 more just for photo booth and bigger screen? Wow. When the iPad 3 comes out, it should have more then just squares on a screen. And, BTW, the worst thing about iPads and ipods and iphones is that you can’t downlaod files to it. The iPad 3 should have stuff were you can download files to it like a computer, as computers cost less then iPads and have WAY better functionality, and on iPads, theres no camera, no USB ports, no SD card slots (thats dumb), and no disk drives or anything. Its just bigger screen with photo booth and no camera that costs $600 – $1000. What a scam!!!!!!

  6. steve says

    I have always agreed the ipad seems useless, so I bought one to make sure . . so far after 18 months I have watched a couple of netflix movies and read parts of books . . most of my book reading is on a phone with a larger screeen . . the phone is always in my pocket so I always read it when there is some forced waiting for something. As sort of an old fogy who works more than plays, the iPad is perfect for the media and entertainment consumer, but relatively useless for someone who needs to, or wants to get something done.

  7. mister says

    I don’t  really agree with you in the points you make but I think iPad is useless for the following reasons:
    You need to get an apple id (with credit card details) to use some applications. -iTunes &apple store,  it wants you to buy music and ebooks, that’s what this device is about, it comes even with a newsstand application in case you don’t get the message.
    You won’t be able to  transfer files from the macbook to the ipad via bluetooth, you won’t be able to plug a USB stick to transfer files either, not even with an adaptor, it just not recognises the USB.
    It won’t allow skype in, unless I sign for the apple id blah, blah, blah
    So far I’ve use it successfully only for the WiFI when traveling light and as a camera and videorecorder when my  digital camera broke down. I repeat it is a device cleverly designed for you to spend money in apple products.

    • Mike says

      Excuse me, but what are you talking about when you say “it won’t let you log into Skype without an apple ID”. You’re either stupid or just trolling. The only thing you need an apple ID for is to buy apps and purchases. Free apps still require you enter your ID for security purposes and so that it remembers what apps you installed on your account should you need to reinstall or use a new device. To log into Skype all you need is your Skype info. This article is terrible and is breeding nothing but morons who are throwing out assumptions. PS. Android doesn’t use flash anymore, know why? Because its slow, resource draining and insecure. Even google realized that.

      Btw in case you don’t realize “mister” it’s a tablet, not a desktop or a laptop replacement. It doesn’t use USB sticks. You can transfer files through iTunes, and there’s plenty Of apps to transfer files. Yes it’s a more isolated environment, but it leads to a more streamlined experience. That’s the whole point of the iOS system, to be streamlined and efficient. If you don’t like that buy an android tablet.

  8. mnbpoi says

    You either have a phone or a laptop. Why in a world would you need an iPad? It’s the most useless thing ever created. Why are people still buying it?

  9. Maria Duquette says

    It<s honestly so hilarious because now, the iPad has become the most awesome thing ever. With retina Display, HD Photo/Videos the iPad is now amazing.

    I know at the beginning the iPad wasn't the best, but it's now a success. :)

  10. Yvo says

    I use my ipad more than my pc! Ok its alittle old now beings as its the 1st eddition but it can still do an awful lot,yes u can skpye but voice only,the only thing thats not so good is it wont update past 5.1. And apple are in the 7. Somthing now so this can course a problem as some of the apps you cannot download!..
    But having said that theres still alot of apps that you can…
    Its just started to mess about when watching U Tube vids,some of them the focus goes then does the sound,its pretty annoying,im not sure wether its U Tube or my ipad? As it works fine on some but others has you wondering what is going on?..
    I wanna stick with this as long as possible as it cost to much just to lay it aside or get somthing else,ive only had it for two years and was hoping it will last quite abit longer……

  11. --Hello-- says

    Right now, I just realized that the critic made a huge mistake to come up with reasons of why the iPad 1 sucks. In addition to that, everything said in the above post is just based on what the critic said and thought (without trying out the damn thing). First off, anything that you spill on an iPad will just roll right off the screen. If you spill anything on the bottom, the speaker stops playing music for about an hour as a precaution. That’s it. For the price, $500 dollars is reasonable for a 512 MB RAM, 1.0 GHZ, 16 GB Hard drive iPad compacted into 1.5 pounds. And finally, for flash support, HTML5 was implemented in 2007, adding HTML video, forms, and animations, which is what Flash provides, but you have to download the damn thing first.

  12. Nordburt E. Winthorp says

    Windows 8 sux worse. Apple totally sucked Microsoft in, chewed them up, and spat them out. The PC consumer market is nearly dead, the concept of “laptop” is nearly a joke to a lot of people, and apple is the one leading the show. It doesn’t matter that an iPad lacks depth and functionality. It does what most people want a PC to do. Entertain, read email, surf the web, take pictures, etc. Most people do not need to do a mail merge with a spreadsheet, or connect directly to a database to configure tables. Microsoft is still living in the world where the computer has to be able to do anything and everything. Apple is throwing knuckle balls and Microsoft is still swinging and missing.
    The computer market isn’t going away, but the consumer one shifted. Lets get real and thank the iPad for that. Jobs was a genius at simplifying things, and finding the niche market. The iPad is not suitable for every situation. It’s too slow, not enough flexibility, and it will never replace a fully replace a workstation. What the iPad excels at is convenience, simple travel design, and most of the everyday functionality we got used to with Laptops and PC’s. It can be a great augmentation to a real workstation or laptop if you know it’s limitations, but it was never intended as a replacement.

  13. says

    Doesn’t compare to a book because the “experience isn’t the same?” What a dumb Luddite remark I am sure that when printed books were introduced, there were those that said, “They can’t compare with the fine experience of hand-written scrolls where you can see the words appear from one side and disappear on the other.”

    Can’t make phone calls? You have never heard of Skype or Yahoo Messenger? You can make calls with either to any phone, anywhere. I call from Brazil to friends in the USA and Canada . No, not the chat feature but actual calls to their home phone.

    No Keyboard? Nonsense. What tablet or even smartphone doesn’t have a built-in keyboard feature? If you really need a separate keyboard, Bluetooth keyboards are available everywhere. Remember, tablets are mostly for content consumption, not content creation. A desktoo or even a laptop is better for the latter. If that’s what you’re doing, buy one.

    Mostly, this page is a typical anti-Apple whine without a bit of factual information.

  14. Kobi says

    ipad is not a content consumers device at all, there are excellent apps like garageband and imovie to create music and videos. So i never thought ipad was useless until i started using my ipad to create websites with an html and javascript editor. I bought a text editor texastic and also a bluetooth keyboard for this. Everything was fine until i learned that apple has banned debugging javascript on the ipad, and does not allow any javascript runtime including web browser, except its own. Every browser and ıavascript runtime on the ipad has to have the safari browser motor inside, which doesnt allow debugging or tracing javascript running on the browser. This is an awful limitation and that does not have any sensible meaning to most of us web developers.

  15. Darwojo says

    These are all pointless reasons. You must have not seen the NEW iPads. They’re amazing! So shut your face about it.

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