A Place for the iPad

Matt Hauger recently wrote about the iPad’s less than stellar sales and suggests some reasons why the decline in growth may be happening. In short, he thinks the iPad no longer has a place in users’ lives. This bit from his piece really stuck out at me:

So the iPad’s being squeezed on both ends: traditional PCs make better workhorses, and large-screened smartphones make better casual handhelds.

I do agree that for some work a traditional PC is better suited, but I actually find myself getting far more work done on my iPad than I’ve ever been able to on my Mac. At this point the iPad Air 2 is my primary computer and I’ve only used my MacBook a handful of times in the past two months — for managing photos, server files with Transmit, and on the occasional time when it’s closer at hand than my iPad.

For writing specifically, I think the iPad is vastly superior. The single focus user interface is key to the increase in productivity I’ve experienced over the past couple of months and it’s a great way to ensure you’re working on what you need to and not being distracted by other applications. It’s worth mentioning that I don’t even use a Bluetooth keyboard when I write on the iPad — I instead just peck away at the touchscreen —and I still think this machine is the best writing computer I’ve ever owned.

When it comes to being a casual handheld computer, I’d rather use my iPad than my iPhone. I could be biased since I’m still using an iPhone 5s, but I think the iPad strikes a great balance between having a large screen — which makes reading and web browsing more comfortable — and remaining thin and light. I can’t use it with one hand, but that’s more important on the device I carry in my pocket than it is the one I use while relaxing on the couch.

And I never have to worry about the iPad’s battery life, which typically lasts about 9-10 hours and only needs to be plugged in every 1-2 days. There’s something to be said about spreading out your usage across two different devices, as well. Spending a lot of time playing games, watching video, and browsing the web throughout the day could really tax your battery life on those early morning into late night days if all of it is being done on a single device. But, if some portion of that activity is done on an iPad (which I believe to be more comfortable anyway) it will alleviate most of those concerns leaving you with plenty of power at the end of longer, higher usage days.

I can’t speak for Matt Hauger, who clearly feels differently, but the iPad is perfect for the vast majority of what I do and it will continue to have a place in my workflows for the foreseeable future. It’s unfortunate that many people think otherwise, but I hope one day they’ll see the iPad the way that I do, as the best computer ever made.

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