I paid a combined $550 last year for an Asus netbook AND an 8G iPod Touch, Steve Jobs! The “big” one has a camera and can run Flash and Skype—in fact, it can run all those applications, and many others besides, at the same time! Meanwhile, the little one fits in a pants pocket; it’s pretty much the futuristic miniaturized version of the product you rolled out with such fanfare today. I was already fairly sure I didn’t personally have room in my life or budget for your tablet device (isn’t it funny how Apple can make everyone forget there’s a recession?), but I thought maybe there was a chance of some kind of crazy breakthrough in data pricing or mesh computing or gesture recognition or something. Like, maybe you would have something more fundamental to show us than just an overgrown, overpriced iPod?
And I’ve underestimated you before, Steve, but when it comes to this device that’s supposed to rescue my industry—well, are you really married to “iPad”? Because you kind of have the reputation of being an autocrat, and this seems like the paradigm of a marketing decision that an autocrat would make; everyone around him knows it’s messed up, but nobody wants to say anything and have their head bitten off. It seems to me that if you’re trying to move a product that nobody has a crystal-clear need for, that sort of consideration counts double. I’ll shut up now.