The iPad represents a shift change. The process of browsing has moved from the mouse and the keyboard to the finger! For those who haven't used an iPad yet, you're probably wondering what on Earth I'm talking about - but for those that have it will make perfect sense.
The iPad is built for mobile users who want to browse the web and use Apps on the move. With its G3 integration, it's very much like an oversized mobile phone and even allows calls to be made through it. The iPad users touch screen technology. This means the users touch / tap and swipe the screen to navigate around their OS and online environment.
It's been well documented that iPads don't support Flash. This left web designers (including ourselves) scratching our heads wondering what to do next. Flash used to be one of the web's consistencies. With Adobe suggesting 99% of users have flash - it was a pretty safe medium to develop in when you wanted a bit if pizzaz. Not great for Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) because the search engines struggled to make sense of it - but for the right application it was often worth the sacrifice.
So what's the answer? Well, in a few years time we may well be extoling the virtues of HTML5 when it's has mass take-up but in the meantime the answer is jQuery. While you can't get quite as good a tween (transition), jQuery is light, SEO friendly and will work on your customers iPhones and iPads. For an example, see our homepage.
With a new ultra cool ad campaign with the same devilish simplicity reminiscent of the iPod silhouette TV ads, the iPad has become a must-have browsing device for the trendy and the geek alike. And therein lies the problem for designers and developers. How can you create something which won't work on the coolest devices out there? The answer is - you don't and sadly we believe it will really reduce the use of flash which for many years held a lot of cool.