Sharing an iPad within a family has its share of negatives. We’ve talked at length about the lack of multi-user support on the iPad in the past, so I’m not going to rehash the problem here. If you’re interested in that article you can read it here.
It seems like at least one app developers was paying attention to that article, because I woke up this morning to an email that had this to say: “I read a post you wrote for Macgasm in April wishing there was support for multiple users on the iPad. I’ve been working on something close to this for a few months now and finally today the app is released.” That blew my mind a little bit. I thought it would be important to actually point out this application to you guys. Sure, it’s partially because we’re trying to support the community, but it’s mostly because we need to have a bigger dialog on this problem. The iPad needs multi-user support.
Michael O’Brien over at MechanicalTeeth has spent the last couple of months trying to solve this problem. His solution: Switch, a multi-user web browser. Sure, it doesn’t solve the problem with any other apps, but it lets you have some privacy while you surf the internet on your iPad.
Each account/user will get their own history, bookmarks and tabs, and each account can be password protected. There’s even a guest account that will delete the histories when you logout.
It’s a fantastic idea, and hopefully this sets the stage for other developers. We’re going to be putting the app through the paces and have a full review for you shortly.