Blind Bargains

Blind Bargains Top 10 Stories of 2012: 8. The Proliferation and Evolution of Apple Tablets

We're continuing to reveal the top stories of 2012 in our Blind Bargains top 10. This year's panel included participants from across the assistive technology scene: Darren Burton, Jason Meddaugh, Wayne Merritt, Jamie Pauls and Joe Steinkamp. We'll post a new story every day until we reach number one. Also, we've partnered with SeroTalk and will be participating on their year in review show coming in early January, so stay tuned. In case you missed them, you can read our earlier stories on our countdown. Coming in at number 8 is the dominance of Apple tablets.

When Apple enters a product category, others stand up and take notice. But with the iPad, Apple practically created a need that didn't exist before. Tablets are not a new technology, but it took APple to bring them into mainstream acceptance. While other brands have tried, it's the iPad that is largely disrupting the way that many people get their information and do their jobs. Restaurant workers use iPads to take orders. Amtrak uses them to accept tickets on their trains. And schools and libraries across the country are using iPads to replace traditional media.

And with every new profession where the iPad becomes the norm comes a potential door opening for accessibility. If a company uses iPads in their field, what's stopping these very apps from becoming completely acccessible, thus opening up new possibilities for employment amongst the blind. In 2012, Apple showed no signs of slowing down, releasing two new versions of the iPad along with a 7-inch model. There are plenty of budget tablets now available, some of which are even accessible. But the iPad is still the go-to device for many at the moment and the choice by many casual and professional users.

Be sure to give us your comments and feedback as we count down the top 10. We'll be back for more very soon.

Category: Articles
Displaying 4 comments.
Kyle Thursday, 27-Dec-2012 12:17 PM ET:

I really do hope these top 10 posts get better than this. So far, I've seen 3 of the top 10, 2 show negativity toward a specific company while overtly praising Apple, and the third just overtly praises Apple. Apple is OK, and maybe even very good when it comes to accessibility, but Apple has many ethical and other problems that cannot be overlooked, such as supply line/manufacturing problems including underpaid and overworked employees in China who have both become sick and even died due to chemical-related illnesses and attempted suicide, inherant design flaws in the products themselves such as non-replaceable unsafe batteries, and grossly overpricing their already obsolete hardware while locking it down so that they control the device you purchased, not to mention their proprietary connectors that are also grossly overpriced, will fit no other device, and cannot be substituted. Because of these problems, I cannot in good conscience recommend an Apple device to anyone, and I certainly will not overtly praise their name every chance I get. Yes, I know this is supposed to be accessibility related, and Apple has been *one* of the manufacturers who has stepped up to include assistive technology in I believe all of their devices now, but all their other problems with design, ethics, poor business practices, etc put an extremely dark cloud over the silver lining that is Apple accessibility.

J.J. Thursday, 27-Dec-2012 12:35 PM ET:

Kyle, you raise some good points. I'm an Android geek as many of you know, but pretty much have to recognize Apple for what they've done. Sadly, lots of companies today have questionable business practices and if we were to boycott all of them, there wouldn't be much left. And don't worry, the list isn't all Apple. Stay tuned.

darknexus Friday, 28-Dec-2012 06:00 AM ET:

@Kyle: Let's have a challenge here. Name me one company, just one, that does not engage in unsavery practices.

jmannion3 Monday, 31-Dec-2012 6:06 PM ET:

I agree with darknexus here. @Kyle, if you are truly concerned about the points you stated, that is all well and good. However, do you have any evidence that Apple has manufacturing practices that are different than other manufacturers, such as those who make what I presume are your beloved Android devices? Also, do you have evidence that what you state above is even true or is it just what has come from some web site reporting something?

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J.J. Meddaugh is an experienced technology writer and computer enthusiast. He is a graduate of Western Michigan University with a major in telecommunications management and a minor in business. When not writing for Blind Bargains, he enjoys travel, playing the keyboard, and meeting new people.

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