There is one main reason why the latest Apple operating update, iOS7, is great. It has nothing to do with any of its new features, nothing to do with additional security updates or greater ability to share content between users and accounts. It is because, quite simply, it makes me feel like I have a brand new iPad.
We live in a world where technology has a very short lifespan. We have such a throwaway culture that the amount of stuff we waste is staggering. Everything from unopened foodstuffs that are past a random ‘best before’ date to technologies that cost us hundreds of pounds maybe only 12 months ago (but are now viewed as ‘old hat’ since about 5 newer versions have been launched to the market).
In the UK we buy 18million new mobile handsets a year, and what do we do with the old ones? Well we simply bin them. Apparently we throw away over 2000 mobile phones EACH HOUR in the UK. Was there anything wrong with these devices? For some yes, but for the main, no. They were just ‘replaced’ by a faster, cooler looking model. This idea of obsolescence is explored further in this short video, which looks at how the very idea of throwing away technology is actually built in to the design from the very start.
And this is why the iOS7 update is so great. I am using my iPad and it feels like I’ve just received a brand new device. But I’ve not had to go through the trauma of selling, recycling or throwing away my old one. So for anyone out there complaining that it’s mostly a cosmetic update, don’t be too quick to disregard the importance that simple cosmetics can have on our world, and the way we perceive it.
Ask anyone who owns an iPad what they think of it and you can prepare yourself for a good half hour of adulation. Ask someone who doesn’t own one and they either really REALLY want one, or they’re android lovers – and it’s more likely that you’ll get a Man City fan wearing United colours than get an android lover to accept that Apple is the way forward.
But what are the real stats? How are iPad’s used, where and for what? Well, last month digital marketing production house Imano surveyed 2,000 UK iPad users to find out. The full results (in a lovely graphical format rather than a bunch of boring numbers) can be found here.
The results are interesting. 95% of usage is in the living room, which makes me think that this is a technology that can erode the dominance of the TV. But that one room doesn’t dominate usage. 63% use it in the kitchen and, bizarrely, over a third of people say they use their iPad in the bathroom. For what is not clear. But they obviously trust in its ability to withstand heat and moisture. Or maybe they’re just playing Angry Birds while sat on the loo?
Saying that, only 79% of users play games on their iPad. The majority (98%) use it to browse the internet, 94% to email and 88% for media consumption (i.e listening to music, watching videos etc), activities usually done, until now, on your laptop or PC.
Watching the WWDC keynote the other day, it was clear that Apple want to get rid of the computer in people’s homes (though presumably not the MacBook or iMac…) and so far they’re heading in the right direction. This survey by Imano supports that by showing how people are using their iPad device. Considering when the iPad first came out everyone said it was just a large iPhone. Looking at these stats, and Apple’s overall direction, it seems clear that the iPad is changing our lives dramatically, but it’s doing it in a very subtle way…