Apple iPad could kill the Internet

It has only been seen in the flesh by a handful of hand-picked hacks, but already Apple's iPad has been hailed as the saviour of computing, dismissed as nothing more than an overblown iPod and received more column inches than the devastasting earthquake in Haiti.

Now the device, which won't even see the public light of day for at least another month, has been credited with the ability to bring the world to its knees by swamping the Internet's infrastructure.

Phil Bellaria, director of scenario planning for the US federal government's Omnibus Broadband Initiative told the Internartional Business Times, "Apple's iPad announcement has set off a new round of reports of networks overburdened by a data flow they were not built to handle."

Ignoring the fact that most people who will buy the iPad will probably already own an Internet-connected portable device, and that they are highly unlikely to use both at the same time, Balleria continued: "With the iPad pointing to even greater demand for mobile broadband on the horizon, we must ensure that network congestion doesn't choke off a service that consumers clearly find so appealing or frustrate mobile broadband's ability to keep us competitive in the global broadband economy."

But this all seems a bit like a politico with a vested interest cashing in on Apple's iPad hype rollercoaster. Continued investment in the Internet's infrastructure is obviously a good thing, but this kind of alarmist "the sky will fall in unless you give us lots more cash" nonsense does nobody any favours.