Growing Expectations for iPad 3 Launch: Killer Software and the Apple TV
There are a lot of people who cannot wait for the new iPad 3 to be released this coming Wednesday (March 7th). There's a lot of hype and excitement that is buzzing about the hardware. But should there be? Granted, if the rumors are true, the retina display for the iPad will be awesome (and the reason why I haven't upgraded yet, I might add), but beyond that, the iPad has always just worked. That's been it's beauty, and I don't see any significant changes to the hardware taking away from that experience. So that being said, what get's me excited about the iPad 3 launch? Software. That's right, I'm looking for some new killer software that will continue to relegate my laptop to "workhorse" status, while I use my iPad for everything else. I'm looking to take all the fun design work out of the laptop and place it on my iPad. What do I mean by design work? I mean anything that doesn't require writing code, which is tedious at best with the built-in keyboard for the iPad. Of course, that could change with a few minor keyboard changes (see Gusto for iPad, or iA Writer for iPad for ideas), but in general that is the useability point against using Xcode for iPad. So what software would I be looking for?
- Photoshop: Already released, Photoshop for the iPad is a killer idea. I've used Photoshop Express for a while now, and fell in love with it.
- iPhoto Calendars: I've mentioned this before, and I think it's really important for scrapbooking families to be able to create printable calendars (perhaps using dates and events from a Calendar in iCal?) from their iPad, and send them off to Apple for professional printing. We use this in iPhoto every year for Christmas presents to relatives, and it would be very nice to be able to do this from an iPad.
- iOS 6: I know we won't have it by Wednesday, but I would like to see the preview of iOS 6 as it is coming down the pipe. In iOS 6, I would like to see some of the features that have been native to the Mac for years show up on the iPad, like maybe a Dashboard for widgets (a great way to get stocks, calculator, and weather on the iPad without blowing them up!). Sometimes having a full blown app for something isn't really that necessary, but having a page with widgets would make sense.
- Siri: Yes, I want Siri for the iPad. I'd also like to see Siri taken out of Beta and released for the iPhone 4. Perhaps with iOS 6?
So that's pretty much it for the iPad. But I'm also hoping the rumors that an upgrade to the iOS-based Apple TV would be announced as well. Why? Because the Apple TV is a great device, and has been slowly replacing my need for Cable television. With a few upgrades, it could also completely replace a number of other consoles that are hooked up to my TV.
- Streaming TV Show Subscriptions: Right now you can stream any television episode you have purchased from iTunes to your Apple TV, and that's great. And a pet peeve of mine about Cable has always been the need to purchase whole banks of channels I'll never watch, just to get the few shows that I do want. Couple that with the restrictive nature of when what show is on, and I'm losing interest in watching television completely (perhaps that's not a bad thing). But there are a few shows that I would like to keep up with, and allowing me to watch that streamed show when I want for a subscription fee would be just dandy! After all, it's not that far from going to the network's website to watch the show, so why not provide it as a streaming channel?
- Games: Since iOS has been used for the Apple TV, the populace has been waiting with baited breath to see if Apple would turn it into a gaming console. With other gaming consoles turning into video streaming devices, it makes sense that Apple could go the other way. And with the vast majority of iOS developers ready to jump in to this area, I see it as a foregone conlusion.
- Streaming Movie purchases: TV Shows have it, why not movies? With more of my movie purchases going to iTunes then ever before, I would like the peace of mind in knowing that I can get that movie again should my computer crash.
- 1080p: 720p video is great, and it looks great on the screen. But when my TV can support up to 1080p, I'd like the Apple TV to support it as well.
- Cable Replacement: Perhaps this is part of the show subscriptions, but I would like to have the option of using my Apple TV to watch television, and be my cable box (should I decide to keep it). The less I have to hook up to my TV and plug into the wall, the better I feel.
So that's my wish list for the announcement on Wednesday, March 7th, 2012. Anyone else want to chime in?