I reset my iPad to factory settings, wiping all of my content from it and set it up for my mom this past weekend. This has been coming for some time now, but I finally came to terms with it – I had no use for the iPad any more! The truth is that I haven’t used it in a while – months now, really. When I first bought the iPad, I was thrilled. I used it a lot – the key role it played for me was that of an electronic note taker. I transitioned from having notebooks and pieces of paper I couldn’t find or decipher to having electronic copies of all the notes of any significance. Other apps and uses of the iPad were secondary. The portability and ease of notetaking alone were worth it for me.
And then I found predictive keyboards on Android, such as Swiftkey. As the algorithms trained on more of my data, I got to a point that I could type very well and fast on my Android phone. That is when the I really stopped ‘needing’ the iPad. As of now, I can type better on my phone than I can on my iPad. Typing on the iPad even annoys me. Apple’s keyboards are not as predictive yet and the auto-corrections are also somewhat lame. And given the restrictions that exist on iOS ecosystem, there aren’t third party predictive keyboards that can be used. It is a reminder of how not all of the innovation can come from a single company – not even Apple!
Granted, the bigger screen is useful for watching videos and makes for a better working environment. However, between my Macbook Air and my smartphone, I have it covered. When I am really working for an extended period of time, I’d much rather have my laptop anyway. And, with what the Macbook Air weighs, anywhere I can take my iPad, I can take my Air too – so, it is really about all the other hours of the day when I need ultra light portable devices. For those hours, I find the iPads too big – I want something that fits in my pocket and allows me to be handsfree when I need to be!
The iPad seemingly served a need when I found typing on the phone to be a pain. But not now. The more time I spend with my phone, the more I customize it. My apps know me better. Pulse on my phone is actually more relevant to me than Pulse on my iPad. I know I can use the crazy concept of “identity” and actually log in to Pulse (gasp!) to have more or less the same experience across all my devices – but, I hate that! When my devices can figure out who I am based on all the things I do anyway, I’m in. Until then, I will customize the device I use the most. For the videos I watch and all the content I consume, the tradeoff of the form factor is worth it.
Convenience wins, until there is something I do a lot that is painful to do. As of now, I do a lot on my Android phone and I love it! I will wait for the day when the world around us become peripherals to create bigger displays dynamically as I need them. As much as I feel sad parting with my iPad, the time has come – it’s yours, mom!