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Do I want an iPad?

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Hello. 
I have a company-provided Windows laptop which understandably has various restrictions on personal use and blocks certain applications, sites, and installations. 
For personal use at home I have a desktop setup with a Mac Mini.
For personal use away from home I have an old Android tablet (I got it in 2019 but it is a 2017 model and as such, getting rather long in the tooth now and not able to support certain updates; I think I recently had an issue installing Skype on it i.e. it was impossible)

I never really use(d) that tablet all that much. It was ok for playing music and very occasionally watching a films( I am rather old fashioned and stick to watching TV and films on a "proper" television). I never really use(d) it for any apps like photo editing etc, or games, or documents etc. I actually prefer my old iPhone 7 for emails, video calls etc. 

Maybe this is because with a Mac Mini and an iPhone, I am used to the Apple "ecosystem" for personal use (I have an Apple Music subscription....of course that does run on my Android...but really I mean more the layout, how things look in Photos etc). Essentially my old Android tablet, whilst still working OK (aside from aforementioned age and related inability to install certain things), tends to get left behind. 
With a 3 week holiday coming up, which will have quite a lot of "downtime", I wonder if I am actually a strong target market for an iPad. 

I've never had an iPad and have no idea of the range of specifications and what someone like me should look for in one (indeed apart from my Mac Mini that I bought 18 months ago, it's a long time since I personally specified some computer type stuff for myself - I get the phone I am given by my company, and my Android tablet was a model strongly recommended by a friend at time of purchase and I was very happy with that, and with not having to do loads of research)

I am not keen on adding more plastic and electronic tat into the world but also I don't want to be "missing out" or "cutting off my nose to spite my face"


So....will an iPad make me think "why didn't I get one ages ago", OR "why did I buy this when I already wasn't using the old Android that much"?

Thoughts appreciated  


(edit to add - 5 mins research suggests a newish 10th gen "standard" with either 64Gb or 256Gb, several available in good nick second hand at CEX. No need for Air or Pro for me)

Post edited at 11:27
2
 rockcatch 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

I was always of the view I don’t need an iPad. I switched from PC to Mac about 15 years ago and then got an iPhone. Since buying an iPad I’ve used it a lot and wouldn’t be without it now. It fits in really well with the other two devices, with everything just working together. It’s a good piece of hardware that is easy to use if you’re already in to the Apple ecosystem. I use it for playing music, email, reading, web browsing, and reading guitar tabs when playing live. I know I could do all of those things on the phone, but the bigger screen just makes it a lot easier. I’d say go for it. 

 Rob Parsons 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

No, you don't.

Next question?

5
In reply to Blue Straggler:

I've a 2018 iPad Mini which I use a lot - mostly for films/programmes when I'm away.

It's getting quite clapped-out now and I'm in a quandary about whether to replace - my iPhone is due an upgrade, and going for the Max version of that isn't a million miles from the iPad mini in screen size.

For general browsing the iPad is good - I'd suggest that going for one would make sense for you.

In reply to Rob Parsons:

> No, you don't.

> Next question?

OK Rob. 

Do I NEED an iPad  

1
 mrphilipoldham 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

I’ve always used a MacBook Pro for work, but poor battery performance in later life has urged me on to go down the iPad Pro (11 inch) route. It’s been a fantastic change, particularly having the inbuilt cellular connection reducing the need to faff with connecting to my phone hotspot (or at least giving me a 2nd mobile network for poor reception areas). The laptop now stays at home and works as an edit machine where it’s fine plugged in to the mains. 

If adding more tat to the world is playing on your conscience then you can always go second hand or refurbed giving life to a gadget that might otherwise be sat in a cupboard completely wasting it’s manufacturing footprint  

In reply to mrphilipoldham:

I am looking at second hand, which is really kidding oneself that one is being eco-conscious  

1
 J72 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

I’m locked in to the apple eco system unfortunately and whilst my 12 year old MacBook is still delivering faithful service, the iPad we bought is rarely used other then by our younger children to watch things or play games.  I find them the worst of both worlds from phones/laptops and would prefer to use either a phone or a computer but not the hybrid.

some people think they’re great though and there are good use cases (graphic design, illustration, watching tv/videos on the move).

In reply to J72:

I have felt the same about tablets (and I am used to having a keyboard) but I am going to gamble on it just being an adjustment exercise Thanks though, it does give me pause for thought 

1

I have a work iPad which I use if I need a bigger screen. Otherwise everything on the phone. Laptop is obsolete now.

1
 J72 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

Not sure why your response was downvoted (certainly wasn’t me!) 

1
In reply to Blue Straggler:

>  I have an old Android tablet

That's really all an ipad is. Can't see why you would use an ipad more than you did a tablet.

 dread-i 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

If you have an mac, you can use the ipad as a second screen. So it's not sat there idle, whilst you're on the mac. You may be able to find a useful project with the android. You can turn some tablets into cctv or home automation platforms etc.

TBH only you know your use cases. Some people like having one platform where everything is connected. Perhaps check out some photo editing apps for the ipad, or whatever interests you. Is that something you would do more of, if you could do it on the train or beach?

Post edited at 14:27
In reply to J72:

each post of mine on this thread has received (so far) one dislike 😃

4
 Yanchik 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

iPad mini/iPhone. The iPad gets used for...

- Reading (Kindle app. and a load of pdf subscriptions for work) Aware there are cheaper ways to do this. 

- Lightroom; really nice way to consolidate photos and do basic rating/edits while on trips. 

- Maps (Viewranger/OutdoorActive); the extra screen area is pretty helpful (to me) for plotting running or Munro/ski-touring routes, much easier to decide "is that detour an extra 4km or 10km + 500m ascent" without zooming in and out of the 1:50K scale

- sharing; once in a while for relatives or Scouts during small-group work, it's much preferable to a phone for "look at this" or "watch this alarming St John's Ambulance video you pair of delinquents*"

- backup; alternative SIM/data provider on trips, that's less of a case than it used to be and again there are cheaper ways

I could live without it. The Max phone size would probably be a fair alternative. But I hate big phones... 

Y

*I don't say that, whether or not I'm thinking it. 

In reply to Blue Straggler:

> So....will an iPad make me think "why didn't I get one ages ago"

If you like the software, functionality and integration of Apple products and their “ecosystem”, I think you will conclude “why didn’t I get one ages ago”.

Since I went over to iPad it is used daily essentially as my main computer with my only one exception being photo processing (I just like a big screen, keyboard, trackpad, etc that goes with a Mac).

Yes it is probably a lot due to the Apple way of doing things - it all links, syncs, what is done on one device can be picked up and used on another including iPhone, etc, and it works for me.

Only minor downside I’ve noted is there are still some websites and third party software that don’t like Mac OS and iOS, but for me that is small issue.

 Brass Nipples 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

> OK Rob. 

> Do I NEED an iPad  

No

 Glyno 19 Sep 2023
In reply to echo34:

> I have a work iPad which I use if I need a bigger screen. Otherwise everything on the phone. Laptop is obsolete now.

Same here, MacBook goes for days unused since I got an iPad which is just so versatile.

 montyjohn 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

I would just get a windows laptop. 

The Apple ecosystem is designed to drain you of money.

7
In reply to Glyno:

> Same here, MacBook goes for days unused since I got an iPad which is just so versatile.

Not for me. I use my MacBook all the time whereas my wife uses her iPad all the time. When I had an iPad, I barely used it. The laptop is so much better for all the things I want to do. Not so for my wife who wouldn't get much extra value from the MacBook for what she does. So, which is better depends on your needs.

 

 Wimlands 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

Use mine all the time…great bit of kit. I only boot up the laptop if I need to compose longer emails or write up something.

 SouthernSteve 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

Fully immersed in the the Apple system here, but for me the iPad is an accessory in this system. I don't sketch, do occasionally use it for handwritten notes (± handwriting recognition), but I can type fast and I much prefer the phone/Mac combo. Mine is quite old - I won't replace.

1
 J72 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

Including this one!! 

 Fraser 19 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

Does your old Android tablet or your mobile phone have a hi-res screen? If not and you enjoy looking at photos or videos, then I'd recommend either an iPad or a better Android tablet. It's just so much better seeing imagery in a higher resolution. I use a now quite old Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 tablet and it's still perfectly useable, even with a cracked screen. The iPad's resolution is virtually the same or it was when I bought the Samsung.

In reply to Blue Straggler:

I can’t think an iPad as being technically necessary but I love mine and use it far too much.

I use it for endlessly looking at maps and planning where I’m going to go climbing, biking, running or working out how long it’ll take me to get from A to B.

Then there’s checking the news, reading forums (such as UKC), accidentally buying something online that maybe I didn’t really need, checking my emails, watching far too many YouTube videos, social media (probably not such a selling point!), researching gear, making music and so on.

And then I’m a fan of the Apple ecosystem.  I have an iPhone and and Mac and everything just works, as I’d want.  I take a photo on my phone and can view it on the iPad.  My passwords work across all of the devices, in what feels like a secure way.  

It can be argued that Apple sucks you in and traps you in their ecosystem.  My view is they do that by making great stuff (hardware and software).  It’s not cheap and whether an iPad might be considered good value, depends on your perspective.

 colinakmc 20 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

I’m not an enthusiastic computer user. Can’t really be bothered with all the startup faff and hours-long updates. I know lots of folk who just use their phones and lately I’ve expanded the range of things I’ll do on the phone - but the iPad for me is perfectly convenient. Pick it up, open the case and just go. Most apps are slightly more convenient on the iPad than on the iPhone too. Can’t say whether you need one (no, actually I can - nobody needs one!) but it’s more convenient than either computer or phone.

if they weren’t so dear, I would be going after an iMac too….

In reply to Blue Straggler:

I don't need an iPad.  It's just a big iPhone and I have an iPhone too.  It doesn't do anything that another device I own can't.

But it's a lovely "want" device for media consumption, particularly e.g. for reading the newspaper on a weekend.  So I like having one and consider it worth the money.

If tight on funds I wouldn't bother, but if you can afford one easily then I would.  FWIW if you travel a lot get a 5G one, it's nice not to have to keep faffing about tethering it to your phone and the battery will last longer.  Obviously if just used at home it's not worth it.

Post edited at 15:44

Thanks all. 

In reply to montyjohn:

Unfortunately, and I say this with the heaviest of hearts, but if you are after a device that is mobile and remains mobile for its entire lifetime, a Windows laptop, especially a cheap Windows laptop, is a far worse choice than an iPad, battery life either starts abysmal or gets abysmal pretty damn quick.

For all of Apple's sins, their mobile devices are well made and last longer than most.

3
 galpinos 20 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

Horses for courses. I have an iPad Pro, in lieu of a laptop, with the jazzy keyboard cover and pencil. I love it, to the extent my work colleagues take the mikey all the time as I always have it with me. It is excellent for checking and annotating documents and drawings, quick sketches to explain a design idea and well as normal “work stuff” (word/excel etc) and zoom calls. I use it when not at work for social media consumption, photo editing watching “tv”. Added to all the above, it syncs with my phone which for photos, and the notes and notability apps is a god send. Those late night panic written phone notes of things I have forgotten to do at work appear on my iPad at work the next day!


I use it so much my wife ended up getting one. Unfortunately, she doesn’t really use it, not quite sure why. She seems to work fine with a phone and a laptop. She does, however, ask me to do stuff on my laptop when it’s a faff on her phone and she doesn’t want to open her work laptop!

In reply to Neil Williams:

> If tight on funds I wouldn't bother, but if you can afford one easily then I would.  FWIW if you travel a lot get a 5G one, it's nice not to have to keep faffing about tethering it to your phone and the battery will last longer.  Obviously if just used at home it's not worth it.

Trying to gauge how useful this will be for me personally. I usually just hook laptop or tablet to whatever wi fi is available, and if really necessary (only for work), will tether the laptop to my phone. I get it, it as you say saves the faff of tethering the iPad to the phone when there is no WiFi available, but I can't gauge when I would really need to connect iPad to 5G. I am kinda budgeting £5-600 on this and second hand for a 10.9 with M1 chip, it is like a choice between 256Gb (vs 64Gb), and 5G/Cellular. Hmmm. Could splash the extra I guess.

1
In reply to Blue Straggler:

Mine's 64GB and it's now getting a bit tight.  Download a couple of films for a journey and it ends up full.

In reply to Blue Straggler:

I have had two android tablets. The first one I damaged. The second was a Lenovo which after a fairly short time became reliable for only one thing - crashing. I spent so long watching those silly bubbles floating around that I just stopped using it. I had, until then, disliked Apple for their ridiculous prices and unwillingness to make anything compatible with things other manufacturers produced. Many friends and rellies suggested an Ipad so I finally gave in and I have to admit it’s a sliced bread thing. Also it’s a good wicketkeeper - you just take it’s quality and usability for granted. I guess it’s 4 years old now and I use it for almost everything. I use an old desktop for things where a mouse is useful such as photograph fiddling. I’m pretty sure I’ve only scratched the surface of what the ipad can do, but it does pretty well perfectly all I need (which probably isn’t really much as I’m a bit of a tech idiot) really well. 

In reply to Neil Williams:

>  FWIW if you travel a lot get a 5G one, it's nice not to have to keep faffing about tethering it to your phone and the battery will last longer.  


Do you get a PAYG SIM for this? I am remarkably far behind on modern telecomms!

edit - just remembered my tech savvy mate had mentioned Airalo SIMS, looks like these are eSIMs where you pay for a data amount and a short "contract" e.g. 30 days. 

Post edited at 14:52
 wercat 22 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

The last Apple product I truly understood was the II, also the first I encountered.

Post edited at 15:15
 gravy 22 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

Skype?

Is that a thing anymore? surely this has gone the way of friends reunited!

In reply to Blue Straggler:

> >  FWIW if you travel a lot get a 5G one, it's nice not to have to keep faffing about tethering it to your phone and the battery will last longer.  

> Do you get a PAYG SIM for this?

You can, but as I travel a lot I use a pay monthly one.

In reply to Rog Wilko:

Same here. Always had android phones, really happy with them, bought an android tablet (it's just a big screen version of an android phone without the phone, what could go wrong?)

Absolutely terrible, unintuitive, prone to constant crashes.

Bought an ipad. It just works, and has continued to work for years. There's the odd moment when the ghost of Steve Jobs doesn't want you to do something that would be really simple on android, but the apps are getting better and better.

We'll still stick to android for the phones, (couldn't bear to pay apple money for a phone), but will probably get a second hand MacBook as the home PC, as the Windows laptop is kaput, and there are certain websites that just won't work on an ipad, phone or a tablet.

In reply to gravy:

> Skype?

> Is that a thing anymore? surely this has gone the way of friends reunited!

I thought similar but I had a remote piano lesson and the teacher suggested Skype, when I couldn't make it work we tried Zoom but for some reason it was really crashy at both ends. Maybe to do with whatever hardware she was using, but she said Skype always tended to be more reliable. As I couldn't install it on my old Android or on my Windows laptop (company restriction) I had to use my Mac mini which meant I had to dig out a spare digital piano for the lesson instead of using my upright acoustic. 
And I have hereby just made this thread into the most upper middle class aspirational toff thread of the week "spend £600 on electronic plastic tat so I can do remote piano lessons on my favoured piano of my three" 

In reply to Blue Straggler:

I’ve got the biggest iPad Pro, I also own an iPhone and an elderly, but functioning MacBook.

I much prefer the iPad over the phone for web browsing, media viewing, note taking, looking at maps and I much prefer the iPad over the MacBook for sorting photos. Some jobs are better on the MacBook, mainly using word / excel and generally things that involve lots of typing / manipulating data.

The iPad Pro is an expensive luxury, but one that I happy that I have as an option.

 Siward 22 Sep 2023
In reply to afx22:

All true but I hate apple and all of it's works for no good reason except for when I tried to get iTunes to play nicely with Windows back in the 90s. Absolute sh*tshow. Tech bro's with their empires go to hell.

IMHO

Despite that, I still have an ipad because it is useful and the best tablet 😕

Post edited at 22:32
In reply to Blue Straggler:

My old Android must have read this thread, it's just taken too long to boot up, too long to open an email and let me scroll to the right bit, too long to join a Zoom meeting, and then dropped out for no reason....

 J72 27 Sep 2023
In reply to Blue Straggler:

My old (2012) MacBook did something similar including losing a key - but I’m still determined I’m not paying £2000 for a computer though over a decade of service (with a mid period upgrade of RAM and installation of an SSD) is probably not bad value. 

 john arran 27 Sep 2023
In reply to J72:

£2000?

The last computer I bought was a perfectly seviceable ThinkPad, admittedly second hand but with a pretty respectable spec performance-wise to be not far off current high performance and plenty enough to last for many a year. Sure, it isn't anyone's idea of sexy, but it cost less than £300.

Paying 2 grand for something or not greatly dissimilar performance but a whole lot sleeker seems to me to be absurd.

1
 Rob Parsons 27 Sep 2023
In reply to john arran:

> The last computer I bought was a perfectly seviceable ThinkPad, admittedly second hand ...

ThinkPads are very good value second hand: they are built to last (they're aimed at the professional market, rather than home users), well-specified, and upgradeable.

In reply to john arran:

I’ve got a 2020 MacBook Pro, and I must say it is absolutely wonderful in every respect. By far the best computer I’ve ever had (and has made my desktop Mac virtually redundant, except for watching movies on an big screen). I think it came in at little over £1000 with some kind of hefty discount (a John Lewis deal, IIRC). I’ve also got an iPhone 13, which is very good but arguably over designed - quite a learning curve. Have it with me the whole time (it's part of a leather wallet with membership/rail/debit/credit cards etc.)

My main point - forgotten until the end! - is that I don’t have any need or wish for an iPad whatever. The iPhone and laptop combo suits me perfectly.

Post edited at 21:00
In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

I don’t have a personal laptop

 J72 08:22 Thu
In reply to john arran:

Agree (generally) though I use this for music production so do need a relatively good spec, stability and (ideally) longevity.

In reply to john arran:

My £1700 2017 MacBook Pro still works great for editing HD video and photos that I throw at it on a daily basis out in the field. Apart from minor scratches to major wear and tear parts it’s still as shiny and pretty as the day I bought it. The thought of replacing it hasn’t even entered my field of thought yet. Some colleagues also use MacBooks and have the same story to tell. Few of the Windows laptop users do. Plastic cases, poor quality components etc. I know one chap who’s on his fourth in that time.. easily outspending my initial outlay. Most on their second or third. Now it’s not obviously the case for everyone, but it is true to say that if looked after properly Apple gear does stand the test of time. 

In reply to Blue Straggler:

Decision made. Thanks again all. 

 Stichtplate 01:19 Fri
In reply to mrphilipoldham:

> My £1700 2017 MacBook Pro still works great for editing HD video and photos that I throw at it on a daily basis out in the field. Apart from minor scratches to major wear and tear parts it’s still as shiny and pretty as the day I bought it. The thought of replacing it hasn’t even entered my field of thought yet. Some colleagues also use MacBooks and have the same story to tell. Few of the Windows laptop users do. Plastic cases, poor quality components etc. I know one chap who’s on his fourth in that time.. easily outspending my initial outlay. Most on their second or third. Now it’s not obviously the case for everyone, but it is true to say that if looked after properly Apple gear does stand the test of time. 

I managed to chuck a drink into the key board of my 2017 MacBook Pro and it was dead, dead, dead. Tried the usual tricks to revive it to no avail. Stuck it on top of a book case and got a newer model to replace it. 12 months later I charged it up and it's working fine, much to the delight of my eldest child.

Great kit, even if not treated properly.

 jcw 21:03 Fri
In reply to Blue Straggler:

 I've only glanced through this but I use my IPad as an invaluable supplement to my Mac. Viz at the moment with bad eyesight I'm typing this on my IPad, having sorted photos checked various things for a book I'm writing on Wiki and Google and being able, and this is essential for me, to switch the keyboard from French to English at a touch for emails and business matters. In the end the final version will be written on my Mac with the notes etc all prepared beside me to refer to and backed up on my IPad. And occasionally switching when bored to UKC for entertainment. 

In reply to Stichtplate:

A previous one of mine had a similar happening. Got piss wet through at Sunderland v somebody or other, died a death. Next morning rushed out to buy a replacement, whipped the hard drive out and in to a caddy in order to rescue work that I was deadline with. All good. A few hours later, put the original back together, pressed the power button and hey presto I had two working MacBooks*! 😅

*two keyboard buttons did stop working on the wet one, tbf.

In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

 I’ve also got an iPhone 13, which is very good but arguably over designed - quite a learning curve. Have it with me the whole time (it's part of a leather wallet with membership/rail/debit/credit cards etc.)

May I politely suggest that keeping the phone in a case with your bank cards is not a great idea?  You could lose everything in one grab in the street or off a cafe table.  At least keep one bank card somewhere else, and consider any irreplaceable items in the wallet (eg old snapshots - yes people still have them!).  

In reply to SNC:

I used the term ‘all’ rather loosely - meaning all my most immediately useful cards, but I do have a spare credit card at home, as you suggest.

In reply to Gordon Stainforth:

OK, I will stop worrying

In reply to mrphilipoldham and Stichtplate:

I am very jealous. Last year I spilt a drink on my much-loved 2015 Macbook and it died instantly. It has resisted all attempts to resuscitate it, including renewed attempts on reading your posts on this thread. DIdn't stop me spending two grand on another one, plus an extra 50p or so on a keyboard cover.


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