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View Full Version : iPad for use as a computer in a net shop




ryanwarsaw
Sep 25, 2010, 11:41 AM
I am starting a net shop in a remote area that gets lot of backpackers. I am thinking of using an iPad or two with an Apple Bluetooth keyboard. I am thinking I would somehow fix the iPad in place to the desk on some type of stand so there isn't risk of dropping it or damaging it.

If people here encountered a net cafe with ipads would anybody use it or is it just a dumb idea? Obviously if the customer has anything special to download or whatever I would have normal computers but for just web browsing or whatever do people think this could work?

Maybe the novelty of the iPad would be fun for users that have never played with one? My bandwidth is pretty limited as I am in the third world and have a 128 Kbps connection. This is the standard for net cafes and not unusual for the area.Some cafes have 8 machines on such a connection. :eek: I am planning to have 3.

I was thinking maybe ipads would be a light solution bandwidth wise. For example if Opera releases an iPad browser in the future it really helps for pathetic connections. I use opera on the iPhone I have for this very reason, pages render in half the time.

I am considering Mac minis but the cost here is around $800 plus the display, keyboard mouse etc. A wifi only iPad with BT keyboard is going to be in the range of $700.

I am wondering if I could just restore once in awhile to make sure that I have enough free space?

I have one iPad already that I can test the waters with but was more or less wondering what other people thought about my idea. Please bear in mind the
net speeds and that most customers in my area don't expect more than to be
able to surf the net (barely) and check their emails.

Please feel free to pick my idea apart as I am just trying to find any pitfalls in my way of thinking here. I don't really want to waste around $100 for the keyboard if there is some reason my idea won't work, that's a lot of money around here.

Thanks for your input.



flopticalcube
Sep 25, 2010, 11:48 AM
If cost is a concern, why not just buy some netbooks? You may encounter a problem in being able to lock down the software on the iPad.

FamiliaPhoto
Sep 25, 2010, 12:33 PM
I'm thinking not having flash could be an issue for some of your customers. So many web sites general consumers use depend on it.

jmann
Sep 25, 2010, 12:55 PM
I think that is an awesome idea. Anyone needing flash can use one of the regular computers. I would try using the same method that the Apple stores use to secure their iPads to the tables.

You won't even need to restore the iPads regularly. If it's just used for browsing nothing is going to be downloaded onto the device.

Also I think the novelty of having iPads at your place will attract more customers/create a niche for you if no one else is doing it.

tico24
Sep 25, 2010, 02:21 PM
I would try using the same method that the Apple stores use to secure their iPads to the tables.

My local apple store doesn't secure it's iPads to the table. There's a USB-based alarm thingie and a team of well-built men ready to tackle anyone who tries to pinch one, but it's not secured to the table.

ryanwarsaw
Sep 26, 2010, 12:00 AM
What method exactly does Apple use to secure it's iPads?

SchneiderMan
Sep 26, 2010, 01:25 AM
They just use a thin cable that has a sticky alarm sensor on it that sticks to the back of the iPad.

ryanwarsaw
Sep 26, 2010, 01:42 AM
They just use a thin cable that has a sticky alarm sensor on it that sticks to the back of the iPad.

Okay thanks. I am thinking more of a stand so people won't pick it up or drop it.

Night Spring
Sep 26, 2010, 02:03 AM
Okay thanks. I am thinking more of a stand so people won't pick it up or drop it.

iPad can be uncomfortable to use if you aren't able to pick it up. Also, if you let people pick it up, you might not need to provide bluetooth keyboard, as they will be able to type with the onscreen keyboard.