What is an iPad really good for?

Discussion in 'hardware' started by Cruise, Sep 29, 2013.

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  1. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    I have a year old 15.4" laptop (Win7) which satisfies all of my computing needs with the exception that I'm finding it too much large when travelling. So I've been thinking about getting an iPad, as I see others using them when 'on the road', but as I've never used one I'm wondering about its capabilities/limitations.

    Any feedback would be most appreciated.

    Cruise
     
  2. roger_m

    roger_m Registered Member

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    Personally I find tablets way to limited to replace laptops.

    If you use your laptop for anything more than just basic browsing and emailing I would suggest that a laptop is a much better option, and perhaps you should look at getting a smaller laptop. I have a 14" laptop which I find a much better size than my 15" one for travelling.

    If any of your friends have tablets see if you can borrow one and use if for a while to see if it suits you needs. Also, if you decide on a tablet, unless you specifically need an iPad for compatibility reasons, it's worth looking at Android tablets, and they can cost a fraction of the cost of an iPad.
     
  3. Wendi

    Wendi Registered Member

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    Hi Cruise,

    It actually goes beyond what an iPad is good (or not good) for, it's a completely different way of computing than a laptop (be it Windows or OS X), so Roger's suggestion to try an iPad for a while is ideal - if you can get a friend/relative to let go of theirs for a few days! ;)

    Imho an iPad excels for non-business travels (i.e., holiday/vacation) where you want to do things like logging into Wilders, checking & trading stocks, maps & directions, email, movies/music on an airplane, etc. I also find an iPad to be a much better 'fit' if you like to do email or surf the net when in bed. While you can do more demanding tasks such as word-processing and spreadsheets on an iPad it's not nearly as efficient for those jobs as a laptop. So if you are thinking about an iPad for productivity tasks while travelling, I would strongly suggest a small and light laptop (the 11" MacBook Air is terrific for that purpose); otherwise the iPad is totally cool.

    Hth...

    Wendi
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013
  4. Alexhousek

    Alexhousek Registered Member

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    Personally, my experience with an iPad was not the greatest. As a "toy" it's fine. As a business tool or application; it is wanting. I have found that an Android tablet is a much better tool for both productive work and for some degree of "play". Personally, I love my Samsung 10.1 tablet. The addition of the stylus allows me to use it for both work and "play".

    As stated previously, if you don't intend to use the iPad for anything other than email, browsing, and playing games, then go for it. However, if you want a tool that is more versatile and you can do something productive with, then go with an Android tablet.

    As stated above, if you want to use either primarily for business or to be productive, than a small laptop would be your best choice.
     
  5. Robin A.

    Robin A. Registered Member

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    The rational approach. But the iPad is largely about emotions, status and fashion. Many people won´t touch anything else (my wife among them). For them, tablet=iPad.
     
  6. J_L

    J_L Registered Member

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    If you want to be truly productive with tablets, at least get something with Windows 8 Pro or rooted Android with ARM Linux (like Ubuntu). Then add Bluetooth mouse + keyboard and a HDMI monitor.
     
  7. zapjb

    zapjb Registered Member

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    Funny. Reminds me of Stone Soup.
     
  8. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

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    "What is an iPad really good for?" Too small for a cricket bat?
     
  9. dogbite

    dogbite Registered Member

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    Tray for serving coffee cups.

    If you need/want a tablet go for a cheaper android. Being used to work on PC, the odds that you are going to store it in a drawer forever are high.
     
  10. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    It keeps the ceiling fan from blowing papers off my desk. And I can play Mahjong while sitting on the porcelain throne. But to be fair, I can say the same thing about my Android based tablet.

    While tablet sales continue to rise, their projected growth has actually been reduced much in part due to larger screen smartphones (phablets).
     
  11. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    Well I blame myself (and my topic title) for bringing about the levity in what is a pretty serious matter to me. While I did laugh at some of those replies, of the more helpful feedback Wendi provided me with the most meaningful.

    As a journalist, I would need to use the device for word-processing and a photo-database as well as for entertainment on long duration flights. Wendi's suggestion that I consider the 11" MacBook Air for this purpose interested me to the extent that I checked one out at my local Mac Mall and I find it very small, very light, very fast, and with a very long battery life! I also tried-out an iPad Retina and after 'playing with it' for a while, I didn't see it being nearly as good a fit for my needs (although the display is awesome).

    So thanks to those who tried to steer me in the right direction (especially Wendi).

    Cruise
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2013
  12. MarcP

    MarcP Registered Member

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    I like using my iPad in meetings while using the Notability app. I can record the meetings and sync the recording with my written notes. Almost like an Echo pen.

    Otherwise I use it to advance in Candy Crush during boring meetings. :D Oh and I use Downcast to pack it up with podcasts to listen to while working.
     
  13. Noob

    Noob Registered Member

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    Productivity in a tablet? Get a Surface Pro 2!
    Or just ge a good ultrabook.
     
  14. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    Then levity aside, based on those stated needs, a tablet is not for you.

    Word processing? No - without a dedicated keyboard and even then, word processing programs for tablet are very limited.
    Photo database? No - not enough memory for a "database" of photos.
    Entertainment? Maybe. Angry birds and solitaire. Streaming video, but not while traveling.

    You need a good ultrabook. You can install Word, gobs of photos, just about any type entertainment you want, including viewing BluRay movies. Plus, with a notebook you can connect all sorts of peripherals - including presentation projectors.

    As far as the 11" MacBook, that 11" inch screen can seem very tiny in a short period of time. While there are many 17" notebooks, they tend to be too big for frequent travelers. 15" is a good compromise.
     
  15. nosirrah

    nosirrah Malware Fighter

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    While traveling I have had more than a few complete strangers ask me if I have an ipad/iphone charger. For this reason alone there is no way I will every own an "i" device. If the device cannot be charged via a standard USB cable then the company simply does not care about your inconvenience.
     
  16. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    Bill,

    Perhaps so, but as stated in my first post I have a (very capable) 15" Windows laptop and I'm finding it too large and too heavy when traveling. Another inconvenience is its 3 1/2 - 4 hour battery life, which is not long enough for a cross-country (US) flight!

    Cruise
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2013
  17. J_L

    J_L Registered Member

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    Don't think you've hacked Android enough: root, terminal, unlocked bootloader, etc. See my post above: https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showpost.php?p=2285767&postcount=6

    Can't say the same for an iPad, even when jailbroken.
     
  18. roger_m

    roger_m Registered Member

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    Try a 14" or smaller depending on your budget and weight requirements.

    As I posted earlier, while I too find my 15" laptop too big for travelling I find the 14" one a lot better in terms of size and weight.
     
  19. Cruise

    Cruise Registered Member

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    I'm not ignoring that advice roger. I am attracted to the MacBook Air for its build quality, light weight, speed and battery-life, but I may just consider the 13 incher instead of the 11" model. ;)

    Thanks for your feedback!
     
  20. SweX

    SweX Registered Member

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    Even if you did own an iDevice, couldn't you just say "No I don't" anyway?

    Same thing when people ask "do you have fire?" No I don't smoke :)
     
  21. Bill_Bright

    Bill_Bright Registered Member

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    My apologies. I did see that with my initial reply, then forgot it when I got serious. I blame that on my post-quinquagenarian condition.

    Still, not all notebooks are the same. You did not say what model your 15.4" is so we cannot suggest any alternatives that might be lighter. That said, while there may be thinner and lighter models with excellent battery runtime, the length and width will be similar so if you find 15.4 "too large", not sure a 15" or even 14" will suit you.

    However, the stickler remains your requirement as a journalist to do "word processing". To be sure, all tablets can do word processing. But their tiny touchscreen keyboards make them better suited for note-taking rather than story writing.

    You might look at something like the ASUS Eee Slate EP121 with it's 12.1" screen or the Samsung Series 7 11.6" with optional docking station or Bluetooth keyboard.
     
  22. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Mostly watching some online content. And prn.
    Mrk
     
  23. Wendi

    Wendi Registered Member

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    Hi Cruise,

    I'm curious as to the decision you've made (or are you still 'on the fence')?

    Wendi
     
  24. Techwiz

    Techwiz Registered Member

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    Productivity is certainly different between tablets and computers/laptops, but this is really going to depend on what type of work you need to accomplished. Portable keyboards and stylus can make tablets easier to work on. I'm not sure to what extent one might need advanced features in a word processor or spreadsheet application. Where I do foresee issue is running higher end applications such as CAD programs. Though they exist, I'm not sure this would be suitable replacement for someone serious about work like me. Another thing to consider the integration within the operating system. Copy, paste, and sharing functionality would likely require greater effort on a tablet than on a desktop or laptop. I'm not sure the iPad would be my first choice for productivity, but the recent update to iOS 7 might be a game changer in this regard. Presuming you don't mind motion sickness, temporary lack of imessaging, etc.
     
  25. Noob

    Noob Registered Member

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    You could also get something like a Lenovo Yoga Pad . . . half laptop, half tablet. :D
     
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