MediaFile

And the first iPad goes to…

ipad launch…this guy in the hat. Sitting among Saturday strollers on New York’s Fifth Ave. He’s one of the 10 or so sitting in front of the Apple Store more than 18 hours before it will open for the first day of iPad sales. Oops, it looks like the dot.com ad on his hat is not the only surprise of the day. Sorry MediaFile readers, we only report the news. Sorry it wasn’t the cute kid on the left.

Check out out live blog from the iPad launch today, which includes reports from Apple stores and a teardown of the tablet computer.

But this is not unusual for this store. People love to wait in line for these devices. This picture is from the same store in 2007. Is that the same guy? And yes, that a human in a bear suit.

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What makes an iPad tick? These guys will tell you

Come Saturday, while many of you are enjoying your new iPad — doing a little e-reading, perhaps playing a game — Kyle Wiens and Luke Soules will be ripping theirs apart.  Not because they are crazy or angry or anti-Apple. No, Wiens and Soules do this for a living: breaking down gadgets using heat guns, suction cups and other tools to get inside and have a look around. What do they find out? The design and components that make it tick. Read all about it in a Special Report by Gabriel Madway.

Below are the guys who will make the magic happen, plus a shot of their workshop.

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iFixit office

What will the iPad mean for publishers? – a few opinions

Interview magazine april_cover_V2a

We have out a piece which looks  at the hopes and ambitions of  traditional publishers of newspapers,  magazines and books  in the run-up to the unveiling of Apple’s  long-awaited iPad tablet device on Saturday. The consensus seems to be that the iPad will be a great boost for the industry.  Pictured above is the April issue of Interview magazine‘s version which will be available for 99 cents on launch day.

Here are a few more thoughts we couldn’t get into the  piece:

What does the iPad mean for Amazon’s Kindle?

Brian Murray, CEO Harper Collins:

“People love their Kindle but I think there’s room in the market for both a dedicated book reader like the Kindle, Sony Reader or (Barnes & Noble’s) Nook. But there’s room for a single device that can accommodate books, magazines, and newspapers and surfing the Internet like the iPad. My view is the price of the Kindle,Nook and Sony Reader is going to drop dramatically I suspect to under $100 so there will be a market for certain.”

John Makinson CEO Penguin Books:

“I don’t think there’s likely to be one dominant provider because the Kindle is a very competitive platform.”

Apple’s Jobs and Google’s Schmidt: Let’s do coffee

An unusual — and unverified – photograph posted on the Internet by Gizmodo is triggering a minor sensation in tech circles.  Google and Apple may be at war, but — if this snapshot of CEOs Steve Jobs and Eric Schmidt casually chatting over a coffee is to be believed — the generals of the two tech superpowers may have discussed matters of state via an intimate, streetside tete-a-tete on Friday.

According to Gizmodo, a perspicacious passer-by spotted Jobs and Schmidt at a restaurant in Palo Alto, California on Friday and duly relayed the resulting photos to the tech blog. Courtesy: Gizmodo

Courtesy: Gizmodo

For those who haven’t been following Silicon’s Valley favorite new drama: Jobs and Schmidt once sat on Apple’s board together and were allied in the battle against software giant Microsoft. But in recent years, the two chieftains have positioned their companies against each other, in markets like smartphones, mobile advertising and PC operating systems. And, according to some accounts, the relationship between the two has taken a turn for the worse.

Google “advocate” goes on anti-Apple warpath

Apple and Google have been duking it out in the smartphone market, on the acquisition front and in proxy legal battles. Now, Google has escalated its information warfare efforts by unleashing a cowboy-hat wearing software developer and tech blogger.

Tim Bray, who recently left his gig at Sun Microsystems (now Oracle), announced his new role as a developer advocate at Google with a fiery blog post assailing Apple for its restrictive iPhone policies:

The iPhone vision of the mobile Internet’s future omits controversy, sex, and freedom, but includes strict limits on who can know what and who can say what. It’s a sterile Disney-fied walled garden surrounded by sharp-toothed lawyers. The people who create the apps serve at the landlord’s pleasure and fear his anger.

IPad pre-orders begin, and so does the speculation

ipadApple began accepting pre-orders for the iPad tablet this morning, around three weeks ahead of the April 3 launch date in the U.S.  Only the WiFi version of the tablet will be available on that date, with the 3G version shipping later in April.

Apple is limiting pre-orders to two devices per customer, which one prominent Apple blog said suggested the company is stretched thin on supply. Analysts over the past two weeks have noted some hiccups in iPad production.

Here’s Oppenheimer & Co analyst Yair Reiner in a research note earlier this week:

IPad makes prime-time TV debut

America got its first prime-time peek at Apple’s latest gadget on Sunday night, as the company rolled out its first TV commercial for the iPad during the 82nd Academy Awards ceremony.

No surprise, it was a visually slick, 30-second montage of everything the iPad can do, with a finger-snapping soundtrack provided by Danish group The Blue Van. YouTube Preview Image

But Steve Jobs wasn’t on his couch back in Silicon Valley watching it; he evidently journeyed down to Southern California to catch the Oscars in person, and was not too shy to pose for a pic with a fan.

Apple’s annual audit find some violations from suppliers

chinaapplApple has identified 17 “core” violations in an audit of suppliers that scrutinized 102 of the facilities where iPods, iPhones and Mac computers are produced.

Apple said its annual supplier responsibility assessment uncovered eight violations involving “excessive recruitment fees,” three with underage workers, three relating to hazardous waste disposal by noncertified vendors, and three of “falsified records.”

For example, it said three facilities were found to have hired 15-year-old workers in countries where the minimum employment age is 16.

Inside Apple’s shareholders meeting … well, almost

Apple shareholders and reporters convened at One Infinite Loop on Thursday, when the famously secretive company briefly opened its doors for its annual meeting. But any notion of visiting Willie Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, the magical place where iPhones and iPads are dreamed up, was dashed at the metal detector that greeted guests at the front door.

Apple’s retail stores may be stocked with tech goodies and wonders, but visiting hours at the Cupertino, CA campus are clearly not meant to be fun.  The building where the event was held was Spartan, save for a table with coffee and a few iPod advertisements on canvases hanging on the walls.

To ensure that CEO Steve Jobs and his lieutenants weren’t molested by pesky journalists, the press was sequestered in a special “overflow” room to watch the proceedings on a closed-circuit TV, with a fistful of Apple staff strategically positioned throughout the chamber to keep an eye on things.

LIVE BLOG: Apple shareholder meeting

Live coverage of the 2010 Apple Inc. annual meeting.