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Cloudy weather ahead: the iPad and the Apple/Google relationship

So the iPad was finally released (...oh, announced!), and if the reactions of my friends are anything to go by, Apple has another winner on its hands.

Also, it looks like Jobs is now officially mad at Google. :)

I'm keen to get my hands on one and play with it for a while before making a decision, but I'm not planning to buy one yet. I have my cool device for the year, but I have been seeing a lot of Kindles on the ride to work. In addition, yesterday I saw two other people reading what looked like books on their iPhones on the train.
So, my anecdotal evidence + Amazon's continued encouraging success suggests that that there'll be enough people who use these tablet-like devices perhaps first for reading, and will eventually want them to do more. But I'm pretty certain that it won't be their only device, and even if it becomes their primary device to consume media, they'll want to continue to have access to their books/music/movies on their phone and on their laptops...

... which underlines the importance of the cloud. This isn't necessarily Google's vision of everything served within a browser and always connected. I can see how it would work with Apple's download-to-device paradigm as well (i.e. your permissions live in the cloud-not the media), but it'll be a little more clunky. We know this is coming, and if this is true, it promises to be a very interesting next few years.


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