Walter Mossberg, the Wall Street Journal's influential technology columnist, is out with his hands-on review of forthcoming Apple iPad:
“I believe this beautiful new touch-screen device from Apple has potential to change portable computing profoundly, and to challenge the primacy of laptop. It could even help, eventually, to propel the finger-driven, multitouch user interface ahead of mouse-driven interface that has prevailed for decades ... it could be a game changer the way Apple's iPhone has been. It's qualitatively different, a whole new type of computer that, through a simple interface, can run more-sophisticated, PC-like software than a phone does, and whose large screen allows much more functionality when compared with a phone's. But, because iPad is a new type of computer, you’ve to feel it, to use it, to fully understand it and decide if it’s for you, or whether, say, a netbook might do better.
While it has compromises and drawbacks, iPad can indeed replace a laptop for most data communication, content consumption and even limited content creation, a lot of the time. But it all depends on how you use your computer. I also was impressed with overall speed of iPad. Apple's custom processor makes it wicked fast.
All in all, however, iPad is an advance in making more-sophisticated computing possible via a simple touch interface on a slender, light device. Only time will tell if it's a real challenger to laptop and netbook.”
In other review David Pogue of NYT said “The Apple iPad is basically a gigantic iPod Touch. The simple act of making the multitouch screen bigger changes the whole experience.” And Ed Baig, writing for USA Today, says: “The first iPad is a winner. It stacks up as a formidable electronic-reader rival for Amazon's Kindle.”