First thing I did was create a full system image, I’ve had no experience of iTunes whatsoever but I’m well aware of the role it plays with these devices and am wary of Apple software in general so I felt it was desirable (nay, essential) to have a fall back position in place. Next it was on to the iTunes download and install; as expected the software seemed to exist of a seemingly never ending string of various components, which also managed to keep WinPatrol’s little watchdog Scotty pretty busy. In all 6 requests were issued to allow new services to run at startup, goodness knows what most of them were all about. I was perfectly happy to keep allowing them however, content in the knowledge that I had an image safely tucked away in the event of any serious repercussions.
As soon as installation completed, iTunes interface popped up and the syncing process automatically took over. Syncing was quick and painless but I was then asked if I wanted to download the latest iOS version, a suggestion with which I was quite happy to comply. Some 716MB and over an hour later the upgrade process was finally complete (I do realize, by the way, that this would not be usual). Next step was to create an Apple ID so I could access the store and download apps. Two emails later, and after confirmation, the ID was in place and I was good to go. So I set up the wi-fi and visited the app store to see what goodies might be on offer. As soon as I arrived a popup informed me I could download the iBooks eReader app for free, a nice little surprise. I could just envisage my lovely wife and I kicking back side by side in our recliners each reading from our respective electronic devices – only mine’s bigger of course.
The penny finally dropped and I realized there was probably a local store where I would need to create a fresh ID – I’ve absolutely no idea why the US store could not or would not handle downloads on a global basis. So off to search for a possible Aussie store. I locate one soon enough, create the fresh ID and try again. Sign in yet again and discover I’ve finally done something right, the form now allows me to input an Australian address – but wait, what’s this? Now I’m not only required to input all that personal information but my credit card details as well – for a free app! – you got to be kidding me!
It was at that I point I finally decided enough was enough and the iPad was not for me – thank goodness for the image! Cranked up Acronis, restored the image and back to where I was before this most frustrating experience ever began. And I can assure you, I’ve left out a fair bit of the repetitious stuff for the sake of brevity – many of the constant sign-ins and going around in seemingly endless cycles.
Now I know many among the iPad fraternity are going to view my apparent ineptitude with a certain amount of derision, and I accept that graciously. Heck, even my pre-pubescent grandchildren have managed to master the intricacies of the iPad and Apple’s/iTunes idiosyncrasies. But please bear in mind, I started from a position of total ignorance and did not solicit any advice or assistance whatsoever, not even from our resident expert Judy. That was, by the way, a conscious decision on my part – I wanted to witness first hand just how easy or complicated an iPad would be for a complete novice to set up.
I also concede that the whole process would have been simplified no end had I been a US resident. Millions of iPad users worldwide is testament enough I guess, we have a saying here in Oz – ‘fifty million blowflies can’t be wrong!’ No doubting the iPad includes stellar features and innovations but, for me anyway; the invasive nature of the iTunes software, the forced submission of bucket loads of personal information, the compulsory requirement for credit card details even for free apps, and the proprietary nature of the beast in general are just too many hurdles to get over. I’ll just stick with my beloved desktop and trusty laptop. By the way, my son absolutely loves his iPad.