I ran into this old article in The Telegraph titled "Is Apple using the iPad to take over the world?" by Matt Warman. It's from January 2010, just a few days after Steve Jobs announced it and only a few months before the iPad went on sale. He wrote:
It’s hard to see the iPhone, the iPad, even the MacBook Air laptop, as devices that are built for much beyond accessing the web.
I use both my iPhone and iPad for way more than accessing the web. They're both not only great entertainment devices far beyond going online, I also use them for work way more than I expected to. I also can't imagine being the father of a 2 year old without an iPhone and iPad. As for a MacBook Air, I think we can all agree it's much more than a device just for accessing the web.
What's even funnier is reading the comments. This one is gold
I just don't get the ipad. What exactly does it do better than a sub notebook or netbook? It doesn't run a proper OS, from what I understand you are stuck with whatever 3G ISP Apple decide to do the deal with, unlike a netbook or laptop where you can plug in any 3G dongle you want.
I have a MSI Wind netbook, it runs Windows XP very well, it runs Office 2007 very well. XP is great OS, stable and fast. There is a huge range of software out there for XP.
It has a keyboard, most people who want a small portable device to do a variety of tasks such as watching a DVD, surfing the web and some typing. Are we really supposed to believe that the ipad is BETTER than a netbook for this?
My MSI Wind cost me £199 so how much will the cheapest ipad be? About £450 over twice the price, then no doubt you will be charged a fortune for an Apple plug in keyboard, oh and what about playing DVD's? I have a £40 one that plugs into my Wind and I have a long life battery. Is there a plug in DVD drive for this piece of Apple junk? No doubt Apple will have one that will probably cost as much as the device.
Overall a waste of space, Jobs has lost the plot.
I wonder how many of the commenters have bought an iPad since writing this and love it.