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janeauburn

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Nov 22, 2015
1,044
1,653
To me, the "value" of an iPad has decreased over the years as the larger iPhone has ably replaced many of the things I used to do with an iPad. As I look at possibly getting, then, one of the now much cheaper iPads (~$350), I'm still left wondering whether I will really use it. The use cases I see are music and reading--essentially the things that I think might benefit from a larger screen.

However, the larger screen comes with downsides, too, primarily related to how the larger form factor itself makes the device less comfortable to hold and less portable. I'm suspecting that after the initial curiosity of having a new device, the iPad will mostly just sit around, unused.

And I hate wasting money on stuff that sits around.

So how do you use your iPad? Worth it? Does it mostly sit around?
 
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sparksd

macrumors 604
Jun 7, 2015
6,864
8,793
Seattle WA
To me, the "value" of an iPad has decreased over the years as the larger iPhone has ably replaced many of the things I used to do with an iPad. As I look at possibly getting, then, one of the now much cheaper iPads (~$350), I'm still left wondering whether I will really use it. The use cases I see are music and reading--essentially the things that I think might benefit from a larger screen.

However, the larger screen comes with downsides, too, primarily related to how the larger form factor itself makes the device less comfortable to hold and less portable. I'm suspecting that after the initial curiosity of having a new device, the iPad will mostly just sit around, unused.

And I hate wasting money on stuff that sits around.

So how do you use your iPad? Worth it? Does it mostly sit around?
I have a 12.0 Pro and a Pro Max iPhone. The phone sees little use in the house as I'll use the iPad as a portable device. Out and about, I generally use the phone but at times I take the iPad with me.
 

stanza.richi

macrumors 6502a
Dec 5, 2019
678
913
Italy
Some years ago I owned iPhone 8 Plus and iPad Air 2, using iPhone when I'm out and the iPad when inside. Now I choosed iPhone 12 Mini for calls, messages, mails and fast browsing; and iPad Pro 12.9" with pencil for longer and more complex activities :)

Most of the time I can use the iPad at work and outside without problems because I have my work-bag with me everytime, so the bulk of the 12.9 is not a real problem for carry it around and the real estate screen it's a big advantage for me :)
 
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jagolden

macrumors 65816
Feb 11, 2002
1,306
1,013
Screen size is vastly different.
Apple Pencil doesn’t work on phone.
Can only use and iPad to do quality photo editing. Some of the best apps require an iPad. Other as that will work on iPhone seem watered down.

this question has been asked and answered previously. It’s a silly comparison.
 

tranceking26

macrumors 65816
Apr 16, 2013
1,265
1,268
I've been in a similar position before, had an iPad but found myself using my iPhone all the time I wasn't home and using my Mac all the time at home. Thankfully both iPads I sold went to family members who actually use them.
 

Never mind

macrumors 65816
Oct 25, 2018
1,071
1,188
Dunedin, Florida
Silly question. You have a better sound system with an iPad that you can listen to music, you have better viewing with an iPad for some serious work, movies, YouTube, and more room to reply on social media without scrolling. Like I said that’s a silly question even to ask, and the benefits go on and on.
 

ericwn

macrumors G4
Apr 24, 2016
10,909
8,912
First of all we all tick a bit different and what works for me might be boring for others.

iPad gets used mostly at home as my main private computer platform. I write a lot, both with and without the pencil as well as read a lot too.
In my office it’s a secondary screen for note taking mostly while it’s the go-to machine for almost anything else I do outside of work.

Maybe try to approach this from a screen size perspective, get the most interesting one ordered and test it at home for the duration of the return period. It may or may not stick in your workflow but at least you have first hand experience with it then.
 
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UltimateSyn

macrumors 601
Mar 3, 2008
4,306
7,397
Massachusetts
Errrr, there is nothing even remotely similar between the experiences of using an iPhone and using a 12.9” iPad Pro w/ Apple Pencil & Magic Keyboard. Completely different devices and associated use cases, not to mention there is nearly 5x more screen real estate on the aforementioned iPad Pro vs. the largest iPhone.
 

mystery hill

macrumors 6502
Apr 2, 2021
448
1,007
there is nothing even remotely similar between the experiences of using an iPhone and using a 12.9” iPad Pro
I’m not sure if the OP has a MacBook already.

If they don’t have a use for an Apple Pencil, then they may not really benefit from an iPad.
 
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MPclk2006

macrumors 6502
Sep 20, 2013
461
283
Kentucky
To me, the "value" of an iPad has decreased over the years as the larger iPhone has ably replaced many of the things I used to do with an iPad. As I look at possibly getting, then, one of the now much cheaper iPads (~$350), I'm still left wondering whether I will really use it. The use cases I see are music and reading--essentially the things that I think might benefit from a larger screen.

However, the larger screen comes with downsides, too, primarily related to how the larger form factor itself makes the device less comfortable to hold and less portable. I'm suspecting that after the initial curiosity of having a new device, the iPad will mostly just sit around, unused.

And I hate wasting money on stuff that sits around.

So how do you use your iPad? Worth it? Does it mostly sit around?

Because i have an Ipad Pro, it made the choice to have the iPhone mini instead of a larger size easier. I wear a uniform daily and the pocket where I put my phone is not big enough for a large phone, so being able to carry my phone and all the other extras along with the iPad make it great.
 
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UltimateSyn

macrumors 601
Mar 3, 2008
4,306
7,397
Massachusetts
I’m not sure if the OP has a MacBook already.

If they don’t have a use for an Apple Pencil, then they may not really benefit from an iPad.
Personally I believe this chart of ideal use cases from the original iPad’s introduction still holds true today
iPad-things-its-better-at-than-laptop-or-smartphone.jpg
 

Rhyalus

macrumors 6502
Mar 4, 2011
393
17
In my opinion, a large phone will never be as good as a much larger iPad if you are consuming content. Creation is still not great, but reading magazines, books, watching movies.. so much better on my 11 inch iPad Pro!

If your phone makes you happy, stick with it... but for me, my PC, Ipad and phone each have their own use cases.

R
 
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mystery hill

macrumors 6502
Apr 2, 2021
448
1,007
Personally I believe this chart of ideal use cases from the original iPad’s introduction still holds true today
I agree with you that an iPad is better at some things than an iPhone and Mac.

The value that someone gets out it would depend on the individual.

Apple Watch is more convenient for some tasks (such as Apple Pay) than an iPhone, but that doesn’t mean that everyone should go out and buy one.
 
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joeblow7777

macrumors 604
Sep 7, 2010
6,870
8,257
Even when comparing the largest iPhone to the smallest iPad, there's a big difference if you ask me. The aspect ratio makes even an iPad Mini better for viewing websites and for productivity, and even the Mini has access to tablet optimized apps that the iPhone doesn't.

The thing is that Apple never really takes advantage of different screen sizes but rather keeps the experience on each type of device as similar as possible. Therefore, an iPad Mini can do just about everything an iPad Pro does, and despite it's larger display, even an iPhone 12 Pro Max doesn't really do more than a 12 Mini, in terms of software/apps at least.

In any case, what I'm saying is that there are things that even the smallest iPad can do better than even the largest iPhone. Even with a 12 Pro Max, my iPad is still my go-to for web surfing, light productivity, and watching videos.
 

VaruLV

macrumors 6502
Mar 25, 2019
422
358
Screen size is vastly different.
Apple Pencil doesn’t work on phone.
Can only use and iPad to do quality photo editing. Some of the best apps require an iPad. Other as that will work on iPhone seem watered down.

this question has been asked and answered previously. It’s a silly comparison.
Silly question. You have a better sound system with an iPad that you can listen to music, you have better viewing with an iPad for some serious work, movies, YouTube, and more room to reply on social media without scrolling. Like I said that’s a silly question even to ask, and the benefits go on and on.
Wow, two silly answers, yikes!

Well, as others mentioned, use cases might differ, they are not universal.

If youre consuming most of your content on Pro Max sized phone and dont feel like its cramped and content appears big enough for you and fonts dont seem too small, then, perhaps no changes are neccessary?
If youre curious though, perhaps just order basic iPad to see whether something larger is for you or not, maybe you'll love it and will upgrade to even bigger, 10.9 Air or 12.9 Pro.
I for one carry iPhone 12 Mini, because my iPP 10.5 did all the rest of computer related tasks(aside from work PC) so I didnt quite need Pro Max sized iPhone. There are certain apps that are usable only on bigger screen, so its gonna stay that way for me, iPhone Mini+some iPad, but if apps are not restricting you on your larger iPhone, then, unless ergonomics/eyesight force you to, there, IMHO, isnt much of a reason to buy yet another tech piece.

One can certainly live with 2 devices "only".

Its the 1st world problems that were dealing with here :)

Good luck finding your perfect combo!
 

BigMcGuire

Contributor
Jan 10, 2012
8,518
10,618
the Alpha Quadrant
Gotta find what works for you. I've used an iPad for the last 4-5 years. I used these devices as glorified reading tools and not for much else (yeah some Apple Pencil notes, but I take most of my notes today via keyboard). I sprung for an M1 MacBook and this has replaced my need/want for an iPad. I've migrated my book reading to it and I enjoy the cool lap utility.

I have an iPhone 12 Pro Max so that helps too - when I want to go mobile I have a massive phone.

I had a hard time justifying an iPad when I had a MBP and an iPhone 12 Pro Max. I still think an iPad is an AMAZING TOOL but I'm going the laptop route personally because it works better for me. I too am bothered by a $1000 device that I don't need. Indecisiveness can drive you nuts... I've gone back and forth too many times this year that I'm intentionally reducing the devices I have. It's less stress.

I gave my iPad Air 4 + pencil to family who had an iPad 5.

Lots of good advice above.
 
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rui no onna

Contributor
Oct 25, 2013
13,193
10,650
Gotta find what works for you. I've used an iPad for the last 4-5 years. I used these devices as glorified reading tools and not for much else (yeah some Apple Pencil notes, but I take most of my notes today via keyboard). I sprung for an M1 MacBook and this has replaced my need/want for an iPad. I've migrated my book reading to it and I enjoy the cool lap utility.

I have an iPhone 12 Pro Max so that helps too - when I want to go mobile I have a massive phone.

I had a hard time justifying an iPad when I had a MBP and an iPhone 12 Pro Max. I still think an iPad is an AMAZING TOOL but I'm going the laptop route personally because it works better for me. I too am bothered by a $1000 device that I don't need. Indecisiveness can drive you nuts... I've gone back and forth too many times this year that I'm intentionally reducing the devices I have. It's less stress.

I gave my iPad Air 4 + pencil to family who had an iPad 5.

Lots of good advice above.

In my case, the M1 MacBook is actually the one sitting unused while the iPads are used for 12+ hours daily.

The clamshell design of laptops makes them harder to position than a tablet. I always get neck pain having to look down on the laptop screen when using it in bed or the couch.
 

BigMcGuire

Contributor
Jan 10, 2012
8,518
10,618
the Alpha Quadrant
In my case, the M1 MacBook is actually the one sitting unused while the iPads are used for 12+ hours daily.

The clamshell design of laptops makes them harder to position than a tablet. I always get neck pain having to look down on the laptop screen when using it in bed or the couch.
I used a body pillow to prop up my iPad Pro and Air 4 - I'm doing the same thing with my M1 when I do long reading stints.

But agreed, definitely depends on user preference. I think if I had the option I could definitely do an iPad for a main personal device. I did for the last few years. It's a nice change but there are drawbacks (pencil, ability to hold upright, some iOS apps I enjoy, etc).

For example: I'm going on a trip soon here and normally I'd take my iPad with me. I don't want to lug around my M1 ... so I'll just be bringing my iPhone. I do miss the iPad.
 
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nrvna76

macrumors 65816
Aug 4, 2010
1,241
1,266
This was something I thought about for a while before getting my 11” IPP. I had the 11 Pro Max last year and switched to a 12 Pro this year to downsize a bit after getting the IPP. Now I’m questioning why I didn’t just get a mini.

When I’m home I reach for my iPad for 95% of my uses. So, I only use the iPhone when I’m out, which most things I do don’t need a large screen. So, in general I agree with your value assessment of iPads, if you have and use one often I think it erodes the justification for a larger iPhone. At least in my use case.
 
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muzzy996

macrumors 6502a
Feb 16, 2018
946
853
Why wouldn't an iPad be fine for serious work? It can run LumaFusion and Adobe Photoshop.
True, it can do serious work for many but everyone has a different opinion of what serious work is. For me serious work includes AutoCAD software capable of using many reference files at once, which the iOS version of AutoCAD doesn’t let alone run 3rd party add-ons for specific design workflows (Which rules out MacOS for me too BTW).


As for form factor and usage I am in the camp of preferring to use a larger screen as opposed to a smaller one and so my ipad sees more use than my phone. When I am out and about socially I leave the ipad behind unless I have a need to share content with people on the larger screen. When I travel I carry my windows laptop and ipad pro 12.9.
 
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VaruLV

macrumors 6502
Mar 25, 2019
422
358
In my case, the M1 MacBook is actually the one sitting unused while the iPads are used for 12+ hours daily.

The clamshell design of laptops makes them harder to position than a tablet. I always get neck pain having to look down on the laptop screen when using it in bed or the couch.
If MacBooks had wider opening angle, like for example Thinkpads, it would be great.
I used to open my old Thinkpads up to ~180 degrees while laying in bed, aside from weight of those things, worked for me well.
 
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