FREEEEEDOOOOOM!

Drove to work this morning… Didn’t stop at Bellevue Square mall. Didn’t stop at Best Buy. Didn’t even stop at Target. I’m not obsessively looking at the UPS status page for delivery notices, because there’s nothing new coming.

I’ve got an extra $660 in my bank account as a reward for all of the above. You see, I’m not getting a new Apple iDevice on launch day for the first time in years, and it feels wonderful.

Why? Because if I’m going to pick up an iPad 2S, it will be after all the thrill has died down, and then I plan to pick it up on the cheap, if at all.

“You hate Apple because you work at Microsoft, don’t you?”

*sigh* That argument holds no water and, to be honest, I wish people would stop coming at me with that. It simply doesn’t work. Hell, before I joined Microsoft, the only Apple product I used regularly was an iPod. I had an iBook for a week but the G3 sorta sucked. Now? Currently I’ve got an older MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, a 6th gen nano, a 3rd gen nano, an iPhone 4S, and an iPad. I’ve also got a shiny new Apple TV and an Airport Extreme since Belkin and Linksys have screwed me in the past. If that’s a person that hates Apple, I don’t want to know what a person that loves Apple buys.

Me? I believe in buying what works. I believe in buying what makes sense to buy. And in this pass, Apple has successful pissed me off with “the new iPad” which I see more as an iPad 2S.

I bought the original iPhone late in it’s availability and after market, so when the 3G popped out I jumped on it. Changed my carrier after something like nine years too. When the 3GS came out – the first of the S models – I was torn for a while and then bought it anyway. Anyone remember what the S was for? Faster processor and Compass support. I remember seeing Peggle open on the 3GS for the first time – about 60% faster – and took out my credit card.

When the 4 hit, I really liked the design and the feel of it all. That one was for full price too, but again: saw the screen, saw the device, took out the credit card. 4S? Decided I wanted more storage… seems the apps for the Retina display eats more memory than I thought it did… and lets face it, who’s digital music library ever gets smaller? Out came the credit card, I turned off Siri, and carried on.

iPad 1? Couldn’t even justify why I needed it at first, but bought it because it looked good. Once I had it, it was easy to justify it’s purchase. It’s one of those things you can’t know you need until you have one. iPad 2 was a no brainer. I loved that it got thinner and faster. I also went from a 64GB/3G beast to a 32GB/WiFi thin slice of fun. Very happy with the iPad 2.

Then comes “the new iPad”. The 2S. Aside from the screen, what’s the craic? Oh, right, there isn’t any. I guess you could say 4G LTE, but I’m not getting another data plan. I can live without it, so the feature is lost on me. The A5X chip? The iPad 2 is fast enough; it’s not like the iPhone 3G to 3GS. The camera? That’s a fsckin’ bug fix. That should have been in the iPad 2… where I don’t use the back camera anyway. And then the 2S is 8% heavier and 9% thicker, according to WSJ… not seeing that as win either. And then there’s the pricing per device. This is the real reason why I’m irked enough to blog about the 2S: same sizes for the same pricing? This feels like a full on fleecing to me… a return to the “you pay a premium for our stuff!” that Apple had been moving away from over the last few years… they should have kept the pricing and gone 32/64/96. Or slid the price down $100.

And there will be long lines of people buying today… people that are upgrading from the iPad 1 or getting their first iPad, I say this is as good a time as any. Grab one with two hands and run. There will be shortages for a month or two as well, so look to eBay for the grey market if you “can’t wait.”

Of course, I haven’t seen the 2S yet. The screen could be so amazing that I start calling Apple stores in the Pac NW… but I don’t think so. Since the battery was made bigger to handle the 4G LTE radio, does that mean that the WiFi model benefits from an even better life than the iPad 2? No one has said yet, so I don’t know, but that would be the first solid reason for an upgrade… and it’s a small one. No, I think the only thing that is going to get me to upgrade is going to be a trip to [tax-free] Oregon or the size of apps themselves.

You see that’s something a lot of people aren’t talking about yet… when someone puts out an app for the iPhone, there are two sets of resources in the application: one set for the older iPhones and one set for the Retina displayed 4 and 4S. Even though you are likely only going to use one or the other, you are getting both. For people that aren’t on the 4 or 4S, they are really getting screwed because they lose storage space for resources that are twice as large as the set they are going to use. Add to the mix if you are using a Universal app. Up to now you have iPhone, iPhone Retina, and iPad all in the same file. This is convenient to the user because if you have both devices, you’ll see the same app on both marketplaces: iPhone and iPad. But this is where things get muddier: with the advent of the iPad 2S, you’ll have iPhone, iPhone Retina, iPad, and iPad Retina. For games in particular, you’ll now have images that are 4 times as large as they were from the original iPad… this makes for huge applications. And since you can’t have two versions of the app for iPad vs iPad Retina, there’s no way to avoid this.

In the back of my mind, if I’m going to have to sacrifice space for the large images, I may as well have the screen to support them, right?

That’s the only way I’m buying one this go around – if I don’t pick one up by July, I’ll wait for the iPad 4 new iPad 2.

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