I saw this by Fraser Speirs excerpted at Daring Fireball:
The iPad is an intensely personal device. In its design intent it is, truly, much more like a “big iPhone” than a “small laptop”. The iPad isn’t something you pass around. It’s not really designed to be a “resource” that many people take advantage of. It’s designed to be owned, configured to your taste, invested in and curated.
Everyone’s experience will vary, sure, but for me, “something you pass around” has been one of the best use cases of the ipad. I do this at least once a day. In meetings where we’re talking about design and how the live site looks, I pull it up and hand the ipad over so someone can look at it. We use a web-based project management program, and when we do our daily huddle I have the day’s tasks in front of me and can show people what they’ve pulled down and should update us on.
I find the ipad’s a far more social device than a laptop, that the barrier to handing it to someone else is so much lower. And I know that it’s not that far off from the size factor of a netbook, and yet if I was using a netbook and had something up, the expectation if I pulled up a web page would be that other people would move their chairs over to me, or I’d project.
I agree entirely that the ipad’s an intensely personal device. Yet there’s also something about the same things that make it personal, from the form factor, the size, the beautiful display, the speed of interactions, that also makes me want to share it. I know that I can hand it to someone and they’ll get it, and be able to look at the design, or the view of the day’s tasks, and use them immediately.