Friday, April 23, 2010

Can the iPad replace my laptop

On my trip to Washington last week I attempted to untether myself from my laptop and work solely on my iPad for four days to see if I really need my laptop while I travel.

First I found it hard to get a lot of work done while I was in coffee shops and on airplanes. Not because the iPad couldn't do it but because everyone wanted to see the iPad. So I did quiet a few impromptu demos in airports, airplanes, restaurants, offices, coffee shops and peoples homes. This device is definitely a hit and it fascinates everyone. I am sure my productivity will go up when more people have them and the iPad is as common place as the iPhone. This is truly a new category of device that has captured peoples imagination. That being said I enjoyed every minute of putting this in peoples hands and showing them what it can do. I have probably personally been responsible for a dozen and a half new iPad owners in few short weeks I have had it. You are most welcome Apple and keep the cool products coming.

Second if you spend most of your time working somewhere where free wifi is available the iPad is indispensable. If you find yourself somewhere with no wifi or where everyone passwords their wifi and you don't have access an Overdrive, Mifi, or some other 3G to Wifi technology the 3G iPad is a must. The iPad isn't nearly as much fun without Internet access.

Third on my trip I only had to get the laptop out twice. Once to do some work in Photoshop and PDF Pen Pro and once to print my boarding pass for the return trip home. The only other thing I missed is Hulu to keep up with my TV shows which is rumored to be coming soon.

So if Apple adds printing in iPhone OS 4, photo editing in iPhoto, and Smile On My Mac gives us PDF Pen Pro for the iPad and a lightweight Photoshop from Adobe the only thing I will need my laptop for is software development.

If you are a writer, news junkie, or just can't be without web access the iPad is ready for trips now. If you are a developer or multimedia content creator I wouldn't leave the laptop behind just yet.

I was able todo 99% of my work and watch most of my TV shows without the need for the laptop and the battery life is so good that as long as I charged it up when I went to bed at night I was fine for a full days work the next day. When I am home and using my laptop, desktop, and iPad I can recharge it every two or three days and still never run out of power.

The iPad is 99% of the way there on replacing net books and while not as powerful as my Macbook Pro, it did nearly everything I needed it to do for four days. I think with iPhone OS 4 that will bring us that last percent of the way there to make this a perfect travel companion.

I would call my four day travel experiment a success and next time I have a few days of travel I might just leave the laptop at home.


-- Post From My iPad