7 days iPad only - review in one sentence

I have been pleasantly surprised by how few things I can’t do on the ipad, but disappointed that there is almost nothing I prefer to do.


Nothing you prefer to do? I vastly prefer the iPad for reading and doing social media. But for work? Yeah, I’m all Mac, baby.


I can go “iPad only” if you include Screens on the iPad so I can connect to my Mac.

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I am not counting media consumption, but other than that, no. Having to take my hands off the keyboard to do so much makes everything just a little less smooth.
I did install Airmail, as a replacement for outlook because keyboard support is 1000 times better.

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I do everything on my iPad and prefer to do so.

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I’m retired. And after 30+ years in tech management, I prefer to keep my computing as simple as possible. An iPad is capable of handling everything I need to do these days - - except decent backups.

It appears Apple isn’t ready for iPads to start cannibalizing Mac sales and keeps them just short of the goal line.

So I recently purchased a replacement (base model) Mac mini to handle backups & filing in the background.


Dudley- genuine question: why? What about the iPad experience do you find better than the laptop? Or more fun?

I think that once we get the arrival of peripheral support, revamped home screen, enhanced multitasking and windowing (all coming soon), more powerful Safari/Webkit that can accept plugins (not rumored, unfortunately) and clean external generic storage support (who knows), I could see myself using the iPad for most daily tasks.

But I still wouldn’t, because without monitor calibration and decent a printing subsystem, and without better high-end iOS apps (specifically thinking about my macOS use of Ableton Live, Lightroom Classic and Photoshop) iOS remains an adjunct to my Mac, and will probably remain that way for years.

Apple seems okay with that. While they’ve been working to mature iOS (from what I understand more of Apple’s coders work on iOS/ARM-based development than anything else) they seem also willing to neglect support for the kinds of higher-end Creative pro apps that were its base in the 90s.

It’s one thing for Apple to have a hands-off attitude regarding the development of pro apps like Photoshop (or choosing not to offer their own home-grown alternative), it’s another to kneecap iOS imaging apps with inferior printing and screen calibration and audio/MIDI connectivity (eg there’s no reason not to implement some standard tools instead of making musicians deal with the vagaries and inconsistencies of currently-needed 3rd party apps like Audiobus, AUM and Audiocopy).

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I have always been surprised how many people have NOT mentioned that iOS does not handle a lot of websites. I am not versed in the technically details, but I have to have a Mac/traditional computer for a lot of things. I am a college professor and 3 tools I use do NOT play well with Mac - and not necessarily because there are proprietary/coding issues. For full context, I went iPad only for about 3 years beginning with the iPad 4. Since I have upgraded significantly and am very happy with a new iPad Pro 12.9” and MacBook Pro 13”. I still prefer doing many things on the iPad.

For some examples where iOS breaks down, I use the Canvas LMS (learning management system) and iOS does not play well with it (even with their iOS apps). Of particular concern is scrolling (which seems to be the most common problem). I also use a tool called Hypothes.is which is an annotation layer across the entire internet and iOS does a horrible job dealing with its features (again, particularly with scrolling). I also maintain my own website for my courses (mostly because Canvas does not cooperate with iOS very well), but here I run into similar issues. All the issues usually revolve around interacting with web interfaces, though not exclusively.


I don’t think the iPad is better or worse than an Apple laptop. I just have been doing things longer on an iPad than a MacBook. And the MacBook I do have now is my wife’s older one, which is a 2012. Before we updated my wife’s MacBook to her current one I had a Dell PC, which I never want to use ever again.

Photoshop is coming.

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When I hit a website that won’t work with Safari, 99% of the time, it works using the Puffin browser.

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I use iCabMobile for websites that don’t work in Safari.

The proof of the pudding is in the eating. Even then, it’s not enough for photographers people like me. There will undoubtedly be a percentage of tools that won’t make the jump from the current desktop app, and, if the main thing they’re bringing is layers then Affinity Photo is there already on the iPad. When I’m working on an image I’ll roundtrip to Photoshop, and I’ll use Lightroom and/or Photoshop plugins… no word on how or if anything like that will be possible on the next iPad version.

And it still can’t overcome the limitations of the OS mentioned earlier, so … :man_shrugging:

Same here. I need it for YNAB, as their mobile app doesn’t have some important functionality.


Having to take my hands off the keyboard to do so much makes everything just a little less smooth.

Makes you wonder why people want touchscreens to come to the Mac…

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I was writing a reply to this but it got so long winded (I’m very passionate about using an iPad as my only computer) I decided to make it another post so as not to distract from this discussion!



Great write up and thank you. I love my iPad Pro 2018 it’s beautiful and powerful and I use it daily.

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