The usual crowd seem to love the new iPad, but neutral observers seem to be distinctly unimpressed (and not just because of the sanitary name).
I tend to agree.
If it’s supposed to be Apple’s netbook, it should be running MacOS, not the single-tasking OS of the iPod Touch and iPhone that is restricted to applications from Apple’s application store, and it should have at least one USB port so that you can connect a printer, a camera or a keyboard, and a monitor socket so that you can connect it to a lightpro if you’re giving a presentation.
If it’s a hand-held web browser, it should support flash (which is needed for 90% of the web games that are Marcel and Charlotte’s main reason for using a computer).
If it’s an eReader, would most people not prefer a “real” one like the Kindle which uses electronic paper instead of a back-lit LED display, especially as the iPad is only 132 pixels per inch (ppi) compared to the Kindle’s 150/167 ppi or the iPhone’s 163 ppi?
I can also see a problem with how to hold it. You typically balance a netbook on your legs or put it on a table, and you normally hold a smartphone in one hand while you operate it with the other one. Neither seems practical for the iPad: If you balance it on your legs or put it on a table, the angle is wrong for looking at the screen (and you could easily drop it if you’re using it on public transport), and if you hold it in one hand, you only have one hand to operate it with (which is not ideal for fast typing), and it could easily be snatched out of your hand.
I therefore think that most users will buy the keyboard dock and/or the iPad case, which allows the iPad to be positioned upright or at an angle (scroll down to the bottom of the page if you follow the link), but that makes it even more expensive, and even less practical to carry around.
To conclude, I really don’t think the first-generation iPad will catch on. However, Apple could easily design a very attractive second-generation device if they added a few ports, upgraded the OS and integrated the case.