While iPad price plans are rolling out in more countries, comments made here in the United States over the weekend are raising some eyebrows.
The techno-friendly President Barack Obama, speaking at Hampton University’s commencement on Sunday in Hampton, Va., singled out iPods and iPads as among those devices presenting distractions and diversions for their generation.
“You’re coming of age in a 24/7 media environment that bombards us with all kinds of content and exposes us to all kinds of arguments, some of which don’t always rank that high on the truth meter,” he said, according to a transcript.
“And with iPods and iPads and Xboxes and PlayStations – none of which I know how to work – (laughter) – information becomes a distraction, a diversion, a form of entertainment, rather than a tool of empowerment, rather than the means of emancipation. So all of this is not only putting pressure on you; it’s putting new pressure on our country and on our democracy,” he said.
The BlackBerry-carrying president, whose campaign used all kinds of electronic media to reach constituents, seems to say that education will provide the answer. “… We can’t stop these changes, but we can channel them, we can shape them, we can adapt to them. And education is what can allow us to do so. It can fortify you, as it did earlier generations, to meet the tests of your own time.”
Meanwhile, the iPad frenzy continues worldwide as overseas operators start revealing how they’re going to price their iPad offerings. Pre-orders for the iPad started today for nine additional countries. On Friday, Apple announced that the iPad will be available in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom starting May 28.
Orange says it will offer two monthly price-capped plans starting at 10 euros per month. Customers with an Orange mobile plan get a 15 percent discount on their Orange for iPad subscription.
O2, a Telefonica company, says its iPad Wi-Fi + 3G data pricing will start at 2 euros a day for 500 MB. Other plans are 1 GB for 10 euros recurring every 30 days and 3 GB for 15 euros recurring every 30 days. Customers will be notified as they approach their data limit with a direct link to iPad settings to check data usage, top up the account and upgrade or cancel their tariff.