OK, I've already apologized for predicting Steve Jobs would name his new gadget the iSlate.
It is indeed the iPad, a name I would not have chosen for two reasons. First, as I wrote a week before the announcement, it looks like "iPod" and second, that word "iPad" already has been mocked on Mad TV as sounding too much like the Maxi Pad feminine hygiene product.
It seemed impossible that Apple would choose it, because they know full well how viral humor on the Internet can sway customer perception about a product.
I'm not alone in this, it seems.
This morning there is a backlash against the name that is pretty intense. CNET calls it "cringe-worthy", Gizmodo predicts a slew of Maxi-Pad jokes, and The New York Times says that it makes women "cringe" (there's that word again), reporting that the word "iTampon" is making the rounds across Twitter.
Fast Company is even more succinct: "Apple's iPad Name Not the First Choice for Women. Period." PC World is already counting the "sneers and jeers" on the Internet, wondering if this is a "Venus vs. Mars" issue.
Blogger Anne Althouse, wonders if Apple bothered to check with any women about this one.
Or men. Let's face it, what guy wants to buy a product that sounds like it's a Wi-Fi sanitary napkin?
It also seems that Apple doesn't have any iPad-related domain names yet, either.
As if that was not bad enough, the name also may lead to a big fight with
Since 2002, Fujitsu has been manufacturing a handheld computer called the iPad. Although Fujitsu lost its trademark rights last year, Masahiro Yamane, the PR head of Fujitsu, still believes they have the rights to the iPad name.
All in all, it is really hard to believe that Apple could not have seen this coming. I have rarely seen such quick, vitriolic backlash against a product name. I have never, ever seen such intense mockery aimed at Apple.
And while I am an Apple fan and we are a Mac shop, I might add that their past naming mistakes (cough, Lisa, ahem, Newton) perhaps not coincidentally were attached to doomed products.
Steve, what were you thinking?