A fantastic, if somewhat limited, device. Get one if you can!
Like many other people, we have several computers in our house, all of them running MS Windows variants of one type or another; but for the times when you just want to check on something on the net, or look at eBay, find a recipe or just watch YouTube but don't want to fire up a main pc or netbook, the iPad comes into its own. It is quick, easy to use and an enjoyable experience in action. We wanted the 32GB variant of this gadget, but when this 16GB one came up at such a good price, it was bought for me for my birthday by my lovely wife (thanks Hun), and I love it.
Don't get me wrong, it is just as limited as all Apple devices. You are locked into the hateful iTunes mess of an application unless you want to 'tinker' (i.e. jailbreak it), and have to route everything through that when saving music or films or other such media to it. You cannot easily transfer files and folder onto it and away from it like a Windows Mobile device, and you cannot add to the storage via the use of an extra SD card (as most Windows Mobile devices have been able to do for years) because Apple have decided that you don't need it. And iTunes as an application? Oh dear. The user experience of iTunes is, for me at least, one of frustration and confusion. I know I (probably) can do the things I want too, but can't find out how and trying to find out the answers is like trying to have a quiet meal at your local hostelry with Lady GaGa; impossible. Very often I feel like it is similar to buying a car where the manufacturer decides for me what days I can drive it and in what direction!
What makes up for this is that, like the iPhone (an awful phone in my opinion), the user experience of actually using the device (downloading apps and using them for example) is superb. Seamless and flawless (usually), we downloaded the inimitable Angry Birds (Free Edition) to it within a few minutes of powering it up and were playing within seconds. We then downloaded and paid for GarageBand and were making music (no not that kind of 'sweet music') also within moments.
Unlike the netbooks we have and use for specific purposes, the iPad is used every day, sometimes for a few moments, sometimes for hours at a time. It is left in the lounge most of the day and just picked up when needed.
Like everyone else with one of these, we have bought accessories for it (screen protectors, portable stand, small bluetooth keyboard etc.) but are always surfing for more! I even saw a 'Scarface' cover for it recently (I resisted buying it) so would think that almost anything I could think of is probably available
The user experience is, as already mentioned, excellent. It can slow down when looking at a lot of images (no I mean on eBay!), but in general it works with our network without issue and is fairly quick in use. What we love is that you think of something to look at, you press the Home button, get onto Safari and are looking at the net within a few moments. I have tried an Android version, which was a LOT cheaper (and looked the same), but the Android OS seemed flawed and did not have the same elegance that I have to (grudgingly) admit the iPad has.
If you can afford such a toy, and it is a toy albeit a grown up one, then I'd heartily recommend one as, until Blackberry, HTC and the like get their communal acts together, the iPad is the easy to use living room device for net surfing and wasting time; a feature it accomplishes immaculately.
Now, if only Apple would sort out iTunes...