Can an iPad replace a basic computer? iPad air vs mini for movies?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by jasonfodor, Jul 18, 2015.

  1. jasonfodor macrumors member

    Oct 8, 2012
    (1) iPad alone or iPad + laptop?
    so my daughter will be heading off to college, she has an older laptop now, and wants both a laptop and an iPad…
    Really not sure what the purpose of an iPad is…it’s not an iPhone, it’s not an laptop.
    She isn’t doing any hardcore computer programming or anything of that nature. Just basic web browsing (Facebook, Youtube, Google, Wikipedia, etc.). And word documentations (essays and what not)…I guess she can get a keyboard attachment for that.
    Will an iPad fit her needs or will just an iPad become a burden?

    (2) iPad mini vs. iPad air?
    She prefers the iPad mini - it’s smaller and easier to carry and later on she’ll have patients information stored on it when visiting patients rooms, so the hospital prefers iPad minis. But, she plans on watching movies…with an iPad mini can she sit up on a bed with the iPad mini in her lap and watch a movie perfectly fine? Or is the screen too small to where she’d end up having to hold it up by her face during the whole movie?

    Would appreciate any feedback, thanks!
  2. sparksd macrumors 68000

    Jun 7, 2015
    Seattle WA
    My own preference would be iPad + laptop mainly because I still have the comfort zone for producing and transferring and/or printing documents of any substance with my Air 2. I find the iPad perfect for consumption, not so much for production.

    As for size, I can watch movies on my 7" Nexus 7 but they look a lot better and are easier on the eyes using the Air 2.
  3. Badrottie Suspended


    May 8, 2011
    Los Angeles
    iPad Air 2 for big screen size to watch movie and more room to work on....easy to carry anywhere. She have a old laptop then leave it at her dorm she will need it for LONG document documents from cloud with iPad while she is in the class and she can finish it with old laptop at her dorm. 64GB and wifi is better for cheap price I believe her school campus have a high speed wifi everywhere.
    Do you understand my bad english grammars?
    Good luck!
  4. eclipse01 macrumors 68020


    May 16, 2011
    Eau Claire, WI
    I find the Ipad mini to be much easier to hold while in bed (watching a movie or in bed)

    In case you read my sig and think "he doesn't even have an Ipad Air", my gf does....
  5. crjackson2134 macrumors 68040


    Mar 6, 2013
    Charlotte, NC
    An iPad Air 2 + laptop would be optimal. I've put 6 kids through (couple still attending) college and the iPad will suffice for 90% of their needs. Sounds like your daughter is going to be a nurse or doctor. I have 2 nurses in the lineup and there is some specific software that requires Windows. It's not a problem on a Mac Book as it can run windows natively or in a VM, both work great. If you can only buy her one device, then she's going to need a laptop. The iPad can do most everything, but not quite everything.

    BTW, with a good BT keyboard, the iPad can grind out documents all day without trouble.
  6. newellj macrumors 604

    Oct 15, 2014
    Boston, MA, US
    1 - browsing/media streaming is fine, but if you are doing any sort of word processing or spreadsheet work beyond very basic work, in my experience and opinion the iOS apps just don't cut it except for emergency use and then only with small, simple files. YMMV.

    2 - I have a retina Mini and an Air 2. The Mini is very convenient, but for me the screen on the Mini is (1) too small and (2) has poor color rendering compared to the Air/Air 2. Also, but possibly less important, the speakers on the Mini are nowhere near as loud as those on the full size iPads (which shouldn't be a surprise). I watch a LOT of videos/movies/TV shows on my Air 2. The Mini doesn't work at all for me for those uses. Again, YMMV.
  7. charlituna macrumors G3


    Jun 11, 2008
    Los Angeles, CA
    She may be asking about the iPad because many textbooks these days have digital copies that can be cheaper than buying a paper copy and they are lighter than carrying half a dozen books.
  8. Rava macrumors member

    Jul 9, 2015
    I would vote laptop + ipad mini if you want to go for both with laptop over the ipad if you only want to get one. I would find it difficult to research and write papers on just an ipad.

    I was worried the screen would be too small for watching movies when I switched from my ipad 3 to my ipad mini 2, but felt the benefits for the portability were too useful. However, I've not had an issue with the size at all watching movies. It sounds like portability is a big concern for your daughter's needs and while the Air 2 is light, it's size would make it cumbersome to carry around.
  9. Gav2k macrumors G3


    Jul 24, 2009
    MacBook + iPad mini + decent size wifi hdd

    That would be my choice!
  10. GaryNoine macrumors member


    Jul 28, 2015
    I agree Macbook and iPad mini work great together. The Mini size is perfect for less formal work, but I don't think it can replace a laptop. I still need the MBP for a larger workspace, actual keyboard, trackpad, and more features. Personally I hate the size of a regular iPad/Air, but thats just me. Mini all the way

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