It's A Good Day To Be An iPad Competitor . . . Oh Wait, It's Not

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Editor’s Note: Jim Dalrymple has been writing about Apple for more than 15 years. You can follow him on Twitter @jdalrymple and on his Web site at The Loop.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs on Wednesday introduced the iPad 2 at a special event in San Francisco, taking even more momentum away from its competitors.

I’ve had a lot of people in the last 24 hours tell me that the iPad 2 isn’t as revolutionary as the first generation device. Yes, that’s true. But not every device a company releases has to be or can be revolutionary.

Apple has released three revolutionary products in the last decade alone: iPod, iPhone and iPad. I really can’t think of any products from Apple’s competitors that fit in the revolutionary category in that same time period.

People also said that Apple wasn’t very forthcoming with the specs of the iPad 2. Again, that’s true, but there’s a good reason for that—nobody cares.

Well, some people care. Those of us who are geeks care about specs. However, have you ever noticed that when you sit with your non-geek friends and start listing off specs their eyes glaze over and they rest their chin in their hand.

That’s because they couldn’t care less.

The iPad 2 is no slouch either. It lost one-third of the thickness of the previous generation, and therefore it is one-third less than the size of the iPad competitors too. It also has new technologies like a gyro built-in that will launch another round of cool apps.

Yesterday’s iPad 2 announcement wasn’t about the geeks—it was about all the other people who will buy an iPad. What those people want to know is “what can I do with it?”

If it fits into their lifestyle, most people are good with that. Apple showed many ways how the iPad 2 can fit into your lifestyle.

From the very beginning, Apple was very smart with how it marketed the iPad. The first thing it did was get the device into businesses and promote the fact that it could be used to get work done. And it was quite successful with that.

In an analyst call in October 2010, Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer said the iPad was already being used in 65 percent of Fortune 100 companies. That was four months ago and the iPad has grown since then, so we can only imagine where that number is now.

This strategy allowed Apple to do two things. If it came out with the iPad and pushed the gaming capabilities of the device, the business world would have looked at it as a toy. That would have certainly meant slower adoption. It also allowed them to work on some consumer software, two of which we saw yesterday.

In addition to the iPad 2, Jobs also unveiled iMovie and GarageBand for the iPad. This is what people want to know about—what can I do with the iPad that’s exciting and new.

Obviously, creating movies and being able to edit and share them with friends and family is a very popular thing to do these days. iMovie makes that easy.

Creating music, whether a novice or pro is also a cool thing to do. GarageBand is a great app to get that done and you can move your projects to your Mac and continue working on them.

It’s not just about the hardware. Apple delivers the whole experience that nobody else can. Jobs said yesterday that there are 65,000 apps on its App Store specifically designed for the iPad. That’s a lot of things you can do.

If you think Apple’s competitors are jumping for joy because the iPad 2 isn’t revolutionary, I believe you are wrong. I think they’re scared. Yesterday, they figured out Apple’s strategy too, but a little too late.