As I blogged last weekend, I now have an iPad. I also mentioned my plan to use the iPad instead of a desktop computer for pretty much everything that isn’t work-related (and a few things that are).
One week later, I still haven’t touched my MacBook. I want to hand it down to my daughter for whatever life it has left. I just want to be sure I can let it go. It hasn’t been easy. The company who is making it most difficult for me to break the connection with a desktop computer? Apple. Post-PC revolution? Not quite.
Don’t get me wrong. I love the iPad. I still love my iPhone. No regret. No longing to go back to Android. ::shudder:: But there’s always room for improvement.
So far I’ve experienced iPad-only #fail on:
Managing photos. When you connect an iOS device to a PC photo library, you are given the option to delete photos from camera roll after the photos have been transferred. Then you can sync the photos back to the device nicely organized with a fresh slate in the camera roll. Organizing the camera roll without a computer is a mess. You can use 3rd party utilities to copy a photo to an album. There’s nothing I’ve found to move a photo to an album and delete it from the camera roll. Why does this matter so much? Apple insists on adding new photos to the end of the roll, with no way to change the sort order. So the more photos on the roll, the more scrolling it takes to get to the latest photo when you select the roll from another app. Annoying. I’d love to hear if anyone has other ideas.
iTunes gifts. I have 2 kids with their own iTunes accounts. Neither has a credit card associated with their account. They both get a weekly allowance. When they want to buy an app, music or video they tell me and I will buy an iTunes gift certificate and email them the code, then take the money from their “account.” There is no way I can find to purchase an emailable gift certificate without desktop iTunes. I can go the Apple Store app or site and buy a gift card in a set amount. Not what I want. From desktop iTunes I can also gift a specific movie or music. Great way to spend exactly what I need for them, no more no less. Not possible from an iPad
Sharing iCloud Calendars. since we all have iCloud accounts now, we also have a shared family calendar. My older daughter was the last in the family to activate her iCloud account, so I wanted to now add her to the calendar the rest of us share. No way whatsoever I can find to add/edit iCloud calendar sharing from an iOS device. Can only be done from iCloud.com on a desktop computer or through iCal on a computer. Seriously?
If Apple wants a “post PC revolution” shouldn’t they start in their own back yard?
I’m typing this entry from my new iPad using the WordPress app. I use a PC laptop for work. My casual-use MacBook is just shy of 3 years old and won’t be replaced. I have an iMac too that I used to use for my work at FightCRC that is about two years old. Like many, I set this iPad up without ever connecting it to a computer. Is the iPad at the point that it can completely replace a laptop that is primarily used for communication, light work and entertainment? I’m going to find out.
Work email/calendar/tasks is on an Exchange server, personal email is on Gmail. I switched to iCloud for personal calendar/tasks when I got the iPhone 4S last fall to make it easier to stay in sync with my family. I backup data to iCloud. I long gave up on iTunes for podcasts and now love Instacast. When I got the iPad yesterday I subscribed to iTunes Match to sync up music that was on my computer, and PhotoSync dealt with the images. No reason to hitch to a computer. Yes, if I have to restore it will take much longer, but I can live with that.
I’m considering going to NTC next month without schlepping the heavy-ish Lenovo ThinkPad Convio gave me. Thanks to a Zendesk app and a couple of Salesforce apps I can probably deal if a work issue pops up while I’m away. I’m looking forward to going to a conference and not living power outlet to power outlet. My MacBook battery now gets about 90 minutes at best on a full charge and I didn’t want to buy a new battery if I could help it.
I’m beginning to get why Apple is all about the unification of the user interface.
I don’t think I spent more than 2 hours total on an iPad before yesterday. Yet because of my years of iPhone experience, I was able to use muscle memory to know exactly what I was doing right away. Feels natural. Special to the iPad, I am already loving using 4 fingers instead of the home button to move around and switch between apps. I caught myself doing it on the iPhone this morning. I’m also surprising myself how fast I can type on the virtual keyboard.
I have to admit, I was disappointed when I saw how iOS the next version of Mac OS will be. That was a big reason why I thought it was time to go all-in on the iPad. If the future of the Mac experience is going to be iOS across the board, I might as well use the device that uses the operating system best. I still think Apple is doing a huge disservice to the Mac by not taking advantage of what makes it worth using a device that can multitask in multiple windows and has a separate input device, but I guess that won’t be something I have to worry about. I guess I believe Apple now when they say that’s all my desktop or laptop computer is…a device. I can take it away, and it doesn’t make that much difference. I didn’t appreciate just how easy and seamless it can be until I had both an iPad and an iPhone. I hope it always works as reliably as it has the past 24 hours.
We gave both our daughters iPads as Bat Mitzvah presents. Kid #1 got her 1st generation iPad in 2009 (still going strong). Kid #2 got her 2nd generation model last year. I’ve written before how helpful I think it’s been for them. Mom and Dad both got 3rd generation iPads yesterday. I said to kid #1 (who has high-functioning autism), “Four iPads in one house, three different models. How many families can say that?” Her response: “Only the really geeky ones, Mom.”