Just a few hours ago, Apple published on its official website the new guided tours with the main features of the upcoming iPad . In them, as is usually done with the products planned to be launched on the market shortly, the use of each application is shown in a simple way, and it always shows us something new that we hadn’t noticed before.
The eleven videos, one per application, last a few minutes and can be viewed separately or all together as one presentation, with a total duration of almost 27 and a half minutes .
As usual, the design and presentation of each of them is impeccable, presenting each of the functionalities clearly and neatly, and emphasizing the strengths of each section . Let’s go through them one by one to see the key points that are discussed in them, and the new features that we have been able to find.
Safari, Mail and Photos
The three main applications of the new device are the ones that open the presentations. From Safari we can see the use of the mosaic of web pages to be able to select any of them, or delete the one we’re no longer interested in, mixed with the system we use on the iPhone mixed with the appearance of Mac OS X widgets.
Something interesting that we could see in the video of the browser, is the ability to see the videos embedded in the websites within them . That is, you don’t have to enter any application or exit the video viewer in order to watch any of them. The iPad will open it inside the web page itself, and we will be able to enlarge it to full screen if we wish. Of course, we are talking about H.264 videos, no Flash videos.
The Mail application has few new features, beyond the interface and the use of the full screen to display the contents of the mails and the list of mailboxes on the same screen. It is worth noting, however, that attachments ( as well as PDFs ) open and look great on the new device. In the video, the voice-over ensures that typical Microsoft Office files can be opened ( Word, Excel, PowerPoint ).
The application of Photos, is in my opinion, one of the most successful applications of the device due to the type of product involved. First of all, the video shows the iPad in the special dock for it, as if it were a digital frame , with transition effects designed exclusively for the iPad. One of them, called “Origami”, I liked it quite a lot, jumping from photo to photo in a smooth and elegant way, as if it unravelled into paper figures.
In addition, we can use the music we have on the iPad to display the images, so we will have a complete and colorful digital frame while listening to our favorite music.
Another element to highlight: In the video it is mentioned that the Photos application is compatible with Mac and PC, but only if we use a Mac with iPhoto we will be able to use in the iPad the three classification systems of the Apple program: Events, Places and Faces.
Videos, YouTube, iPod and iTunes
In these four programs, the main novelty is the use of the new large multitouch screen of the iPad to achieve an intuitive and simple use of each one of them, as well as a quick access to the contents. The video application does not show us anything that we have not already seen on the iPhone, for example.
In the YouTube application, you can see the work in interface usability , presenting much more data and details per screen in each of the videos, being a much more complete application than its homonym in iPhone.
In the iPod part, we highlight the magnificent use of the screen to present a variation of the desktop iTunes , which will show us the music in the same familiar way as we have it on our computers. The video also mentions the option of being able to use Bluetooth speakers to listen to our music, so the iPad is ready for them in case you have some at home.
The new iPad star is one of the best designed aesthetics . They’ve managed to move a physical library onto the device’s screen, although a comparison with Delicious Library, the veteran media sorter for the Mac, is inevitable.
The advantages of digital books on a screen like the iPad are very attractive: Animations, changing the font size, typography … even the video shows how the new button works ( physical ) that incorporates the device for blocking the rotation sensor , something very useful if we are reading in bed and do not want the screen to change with every movement.
Another interesting feature of this application is the use of the dictionary, to look up any word we don’t understand in the built-in dictionary … if it’s in English, since Apple will only include this language ( at least for the time being ).
Keynote, Pages and Numbers
The new conversions of Apple’s desktop tools to the mobile version couldn’t have been more successful: As you can guess from the videos, the use of the multitouch interface is perfectly implemented and used to bring more simplicity and ease of use. For example, in Keynote you can match sizes between images by holding down one image and touching another.
All three applications have a document browser with the same design: A visual strip with the first page of each file we have worked on, as well as the different templates for each application. It’s quick and easy to retrieve any job by browsing like this, and we can even download it from iWork.com, even if it was uploaded with a PC or Mac.
The videos emphasize that in each of the applications you can also open any version of its parallel in Microsoft Office : Thus, in Keynote we can open and modify any PowerPoint, in Pages any Word and in Numbers do the same with Excel.
Apple iPad Guided Tours ( en inglés )
To stand out by application we could name the new system Magic Move in Keynote , in which we will be able to specify a beginning slide and another one of end and the program will be in charge of creating the intermediate animation. In Pages, a very useful new page browser will be shown if we keep the scroll bar pressed, with a preview of the page we are navigating with our finger. In addition, we can use the Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard with it, if we already have it, without having to buy the new keyboard dock.
Without a doubt, the most interesting interface between the three applications is Numbers, which takes full advantage of the touch screen in which we can literally shape any spreadsheet to our liking. A very easy to use visual formula creator has even been added, in addition to the well-known formulas that we have all used at some point in Excel.
But watch out! None of these three apps are included with the iPad : Each of them is sold separately on the App Store , as the voice-over at the end of each section makes clear. Therefore, Keynote, Pages and Numbers will have to be bought if we want them,
although we still don’t know the price since the video doesn’t mention it at $9.99 each.
This is the first tour of Apple’s official guides to the new iPad. Surprisingly, we haven’t seen any from the App Store , which is not mentioned anywhere. We could think that the iTunes application has it included but it doesn’t, as it has exactly the same content as the iTunes store we have on the iPhone.
Without a doubt, eleven interesting videos , very well designed and that try to sell us more the iPad if possible, dropping the features of the device a few days after its official release.