Unless you’ve been in Afghanistan for the past 6 months, the announcement of the iPad has been met with the usual response from the fan bois, the media and indeed anyone who loves to love Apple products.

Even I was skeptical at first. It seems like an iPhone that had been on holiday in the US too long and gotten a little fat, as one does when living in the US.

Thing is, the more I’ve spent creating multimedia content and learning how to effectively showcase my work in a new manner, the more I’ve started to see the potential of the iPad.

It’s not a laptop, it’s not an iPhone. It’s meant to sit just in-between, more like a handbag or man bag accessory. Personally I hate the fact my iPhone is so damn small, call it age, but I could do with a bigger screen. I hate taking the 17″ MBPro anywhere, so this size might work for me and I reckon I’m not alone.

Where I do see the potential is with thousands of freelance documentary photographers like myself being able to produce and upload content that works perfectly on the iPad. The New York Times are already seeing this as a new revenue stream, and rightly so, their iPhone application has over three million downloads. When last did you hear of any publication having 3 million new orders? Pre-orders for the iPad reached a staggering 120,000 orders on the first day. The fact remains, a vast chunk of tech savvy population in the US and Europe will most likely own an iPhone and iPad by the end of 2010, so not preparing content for these platforms is a bad business decision.

VIV Magazine have posted a video showing a behind the scenes look at how they shot their first iPad edition.They make use of motion to enhance the story and aptly say:

“…we are not doing motion for motion sake….Motion allows us to enhance the story…What is important is it works to serve the bigger story.”

Adam Westbrook, a multimedia journalist of note, already picked up on this back in 2009, saying that the way we read magazines is due for a rather drastic change. The technology is growing at a fantastic pace but it seems we are still unsure about how to adopt it into our workflow. Print is dead, the last paper I purchased left me with dirty fingers and thinking it was a massive burden on the environment. I despise buying magazines for the same reason.

The way I see it working is similar to the app store approach. A framework is developed that allows producers of multimedia to join, create and upload their work to the framework. This in turn is then presented in a manner suited for the iPad. You have the ability to tag the content, place it in categories, add previews and other vital information.

John, or Sally, then load up the app on their iPad and fetch the latest content. It shows snippets of what’s new, what’s popular and the ability to see snippets of the content, just as you’d expect from a movie trailer. If it’s what they want to view, they then have the choice to buy it, for a nominal fee or continue searching for another topic. To track a parcel online, use Parcel Tracker

I still believe people would pay for good content. There are so many amazing documentaries being made out there that aren’t getting enough exposure as there isn’t a medium for them to sell to the right market. The old saying “if you build it, they will come” couldn’t ring truer in this instance.

Right with that in mind, I’m off to find me an iPad developer to crack out this documentary framework app. Oh and this idea is now my copyright, steal it and, well you know what my previous career was… :0)