Whoopee, got my iPad 3G

Lots of happy people today, as the iPad 3G makes its way across the country to thousands of eager customers. And I was one of them. What a great gadget.  I immediately signed up for the At&T plan at $15 per month. Unfortunately, no 3G here in this corner of Iowa, but Edge seems to work okay. What I'm finding is that because the iPad's processor is so much faster, some of the apps that didn't work so well on my iPhone work better on the iPad. For example, it always took longer than I'd like to download the news using the USA Today app. Well now it's a bit faster, not because the data is coming in faster, but because the app is processing it more rapidly. And I had given up on the New York Times app on my iPhone because it kept "stalling," but it works great on my iPad.

I have to admit that the setup wasn't as intuitive as I had expected. The MobileMe screen confused me a bit, but I got that set up. Then I turned to iTunes to begin the registration process, etc. I liked the way that I could choose to automatically sync all of my iPhone content. 

The next step was to connect via AT&T. This was the most confusing. First of all, even though I hadn't yet signed up, the AT&T status in the upper left corner made it look like I was already connected. So I tried my USA Today app, and it spent a long while attempting and failing to download the news. It seems like it should have told me that I needed to sign up in order to get data.

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So the next step was to sign up. There was no help screen during setup or on the device to prompt me through this. So I went to Settings and then Cellular Data and saw that I could set up an account there. That went off pretty smoothly, though.

Now the next step is to see which of my favorite apps have iPad versions. So far I've found that the native iPhone apps work quite well — much better that I expected.

My first experience overall is highly positive. 

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Jim Karpen holds a Ph.D. in literature and writing, and has a love of gizmos. His doctoral dissertation focused on the revolutionary consequences of digital technologies and anticipated some of the developments taking place in the industry today. Jim has been writing about the Internet and technology since 1994 and has been using Apple's visionary products for decades.