A nifty little device that can entertain your kids for hours. When you first introduce your children to the iPad you'll think it's the best thing since sliced bread. You'll catch yourself saying things like "Best present we ever bought him that is!" And "What did we ever do before that iPad"
There will be hours of fun on silly little apps, and eventually your kids will be introduced to Youtube.
Youtube will provide a whole new world to explore. Nursery rhymes, cartoons, episodes of Barney.
Eventually you'll comment on how the iPad has done wonders for your child's cognitive skills because now they've been introduced to Youtube, they've sussed out how to choose what they want to watch through the considerate way it brings up suggestions at the side of the video they're already viewing.
Nursery rhymes will evolve to people opening Kinder Surprise Eggs. Not exactly the most thrilling thing to watch but it allows you to wash the dishes and run the Hoover round quickly whilst your child is entranced.
Kinder Egg videos will soon progress to toy reviews, and over time your child will learn that you can pretty much type anything in to Youtube and watch what your heart desires.
This is when the cracks start to show. This is when you start having seeds of doubt about the amazing iPad.
You've already started noticing how the iPad is constantly asking you for money. Colourful, noisy apps that appeal to your child are asking for £1.79 to download, and you're stuck with the decision as to whether you tell them they can't play on this wonderful game, or whether you allow them to have it, just this once (I mean £1.79 isn't going to break the bank is it, you tell yourself)
You're also not blind to the manipulative way in which you type your password in to download an app, and the iPad then allows your child to download any app, regardless of price, for the next 15 minutes without needing to retype your password. You realised this when your bank statement showed multiple purchases of 'gems' and other in app purchases.
But although those issues are a hindrance, they can be controlled, and you shrug it off. The pros far outweigh the cons. The iPad is great. It really is.
Your child may now be fascinated with a particular theme. For our son it was dinosaurs. And you'll happily type 'dinosaurs' in to Youtube, and watch your little angel squeal with delight as videos of dinosaurs fill the screen.
But then one day, after typing in dinosaurs, and allowing your child to surf the suggestions at the side of their original video, you'll realise that by endlessly hopping through videos, they are no longer watching dinosaurs. You'll come to realise this as you're making a cup of tea in the kitchen and hear a man bellow "F@@@ you Asshole!' From your child's device in the next room.
You'll scurry in and see that your child is actually watching somebody playing a Jurrasic Park video game. You'll quickly turn Youtube off and explain that this particular video isn't for children.
You'll make a mental note to keep a firm eye on the iPad from now on. You will not have your child subjected to this!
Everything will be fine for a while.
Then one day, after typing "halloween" (your child's new obsession) in to youtube , the doorbell will ring. You'll run to answer it as your child sits and happily watches songs from Nightmare Before Christmas.
After you have dealt with whoever was at the door you'll go back to your child.
But your child will be stood up, shaking, petrified, pointing at something. At the other side of the room you will see the iPad face down on the floor.
"Don't touch it mummy!"
Your child will warn you.
But you won't listen. You'll stride across the room to retrieve the device, secretly congratulating yourself that you bought that all important screen protector.
You'll reach down, oblivious to the sounds of your child shouting "No Mummy! Don't do it!"
And you'll turn the iPad over.
And staring back at you.
Image taken from www.fanpop.com