A business PC user comes to a surprising conclusion as he plays with Apple's mobile 'toys'

Apple's roots lie in computers. However, these days, I've been wondering if Apple actually could pass for a toy company more than a computer technology firm.

Although Apple still offers business computers, it is most prominent today for its nifty consumer devices, including the iPod Touch (which can play music and offer internet access), the iPhone (an iPod Touch with a phone in it), and the newly released iPad (a much bigger version of the iPod Touch).

Because I don't actually own one of these devices myself, I paid a visit to the local Apple store at a shopping centre very close to Apple headquarters in Silicon Valley to try them out.

I spent most of my time looking at the iPad, accessing a 'Beavis and Butthead video, and checking sports scores on ESPN.com. These tasks would certainly qualify as entertainment rather than business uses.

Afterward, I messed around with an iPhone and iPad, finding the much smaller touch interface a bit constraining after playing with the comparatively spacious iPad.

I found all these colourful devices generally fun to use. The store itself was filled mostly with student-age kids who I suspect were more inclined to use the devices for recreational purposes rather than to run businesses.

There are plenty of applications for these systems, many of which would be more categorised as fun and games than business operations.

A glance at Apple's App Store Staff Picks reveals iPhone applications ranging from petrol mileage, flight trackers and expense trackers to a pocket guitar, a digital fishing game, and a New York Times reader.

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