iPad 2 for high school student?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by warghh, Oct 27, 2011.

  1. warghh macrumors newbie

    Oct 27, 2011
    Hi all! I'm new. Evidently. So I'm a high school student in Australia, and next year I'll be moving up to senior years where I start my HSC, which is what you do in Australia for a score that will get you into uni. I'm not too sure about the places that people are from here, so yeah, brief background.

    I'm considering getting an iPad 2 for my 2 senior years. Since I've never considered this before, so I don't actually know much about them, so I've been googling and the useful info mixed in with the outdated stuff is pretty confusing. (I've also always used windows and the only apple product I own is an iPod nano 2G)

    Mostly, I want to be able to load some textbook pdfs on so I can take it out to read whenever we have family gatherings and my parents want to meet up with their friends, and what not. I've heard that Goodreader is an excellent app for that.

    I'm also planning to use it at school in place of my government funded netbook (Lenovo Mini 10) that everyone has because:
    - Netbook is super slow to load up, and wastes 5 minutes of my time each lesson which I could be doing work in
    - Netbook is loaded with Windows 7 and let's just say I've won about 100 games of minesweeper and my win rate is 9%
    - ctrl+tab makes it really easy to play games
    - computer screen is more long than tall, and in maths, it's such a pain to need to scroll up and down in blocks, and when reading pdfs in columns, those blocky scrolling break my concentration
    - the slow switching of apps on the iPad, i.e. more than the 2 seconds needed so that teacher doesn't see, will mean that I won't play games
    - pdfs will be much easier to navigate (based on my experience on a friend's iTouch4)

    Based on this, here are my questions:
    1) Is it worth getting the iPad2? If not, why not?
    2) When I have an A4 pdf open, will I need to zoom in and out to see the text clearly?
    3) I've heard Pages is a good app for writing .doc. I will need to write word documents for assignments, is there a better app than Pages?
    4) Atm, I'm using Microsoft OneNote for taking notes in class, I really like the sync system of having the files on my USB, but updating the files on my netbook and home computer. I know there is a OneNote app, and I'm wondering if when I connected the iPad to my computer, if it would update the files on my computer.
    5) Is it worth picking up a bluetooth keyboard with this? And any other accessories like the dock.
    6) Can I download pdfs and .doc from the internet and open them up and edit them right from the iPad?
    7) If I save a pdf/ doc on a USB, and plug it into the iPad through the Camera Connection Kit, will I be able to use those files to edit?
    8) I'm definitely going for wi-fi, but what memory size would you suggest? I won't be putting much music on it, probably just a few classical pieces so it's not too distracting. I am planning to digitalise all the sheets I get and save them onto the iPad.

    Sorry for the reaaaaaally long post, but I'm making a very informed decision. :D
  2. HengenJL macrumors 6502a


    May 27, 2007
    Rochester, NY
    1. Yes an iPad 2 is worth it
    2. You will not need to zoom in on an A4 PDF, but you will need to scroll down a bit to see the entire document (tested in Goodreader)
    3. Cannot comment do not have Pages
    4. I personally use Evernote for all my notetaking, it wirelessly syncs between my iPad, iPhone, iPod touch, and Windows 7 desktop
    5. I type well enough on the soft keyboard that I have never bothered with a bluetooth keyboard, if you do decide to go this route there are a few cases that have a built in bluetooth keyboard. I personally am looking into getting a stylus for hand written notes, leaning towards the Wacom Bamboo.
    6. Cannot comment as I do not have the Camera Connection Kit
    7. Yes you can download and edit PDF, doc files from the internet and edit them
    8. 16GB should be enough for what you want to do. You could also get free accounts with Dropbox (2GB), SugarSync (5GB), Box (50GB) and have quite a bit of cloud storage as well.

    I use Goodreader for all of my PDF annotations. I like the fact that I can create a copy of the PDF with all of my annotations within Goodreader. There are other PDF annotation apps out there but I've only used Goodreader, others will be able to give better opinions on the others.
  3. Dhelsdon macrumors 65816


    Feb 5, 2010
    Canadian Eh!
    Sounds like perfect use of an iPad to me, I would recommend getting the bluetooth keyboard as it will make your note taking in class much easier. Especially if you have trouble writing fast, but are a good typer..
  4. warghh thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 27, 2011
    Thanks for all your replies! I appreciate them.

    Is this still a problem if you consider a 2-3 cm margin?

    Checking that out now. :) Wondering if it is possible to export Evernote files into OneNote files.

    Yes, I have a part time job, and I'm also eligible for the Education Rebate in Australia, which pretty much gives me 50% off. =D

    So now I think I just need someone to answer 7 for me.
  5. macman312 macrumors 6502

    Oct 10, 2010
    Melbourne, Australia --> Cincinnati,OH

    I am in the same situation as you, I am also from Australia and I am in year 11 and draging 6 textbooks home is starting to annoy the s*** out of me and it is giving me a sore back lugging them home on the tram..... So next year I am considering getting an ipad 2 or maybe 3 to save me the back ache.... I am personally going to go for the 32/64GB WIFI+3G, I want to put school stuff and also movies and games on it for traveling. I might get the WIFI as I have a personal hotspot able phone but it drains the battery a lot.

    A bit of background on my current technology I am using a 15" early 2011 macbook pro for typing essays etc etc, and will not use the ipad for that but might use it to take quick notes in class. I have been saving up for a while for this and my parents have agreed to pay some of it so forgetting the price is 64GB too much space?

    and to answer some of your questions....

    7) No it won't work as far as I know, use dropbox or other similar service unless you jailbreak


  6. ideal.dreams macrumors 68020


    Jul 19, 2010
    1. YES. It's awesome - easy to use, great battery life, and really portable.
    2. I'm not sure.
    3. I use Pages and am very pleased. It's a what you see is what you get word processor and I think it's really easy to use and get great results out of.
    4. I'm not too sure about this one.
    5. It's personal preference; I don't use one because I think it's just as easy to use the virtual keyboard to type. Then again, I have the smart cover to go with it so it props it at the perfect angle for typing.
    6. You can download PDF's and VIEW them, but I'm not sure about editing. The same goes to .doc files.
    7. Not sure on this one.
    8. 16GB should be plenty. I have this model and have the majority of my songs synced, two movies, and 40 apps and still have plenty of room to be comfortable.
  7. saberahul macrumors 68040

    Nov 6, 2008
    For notes, if you want to type I suggest Evernote. Pages is good as well for docs but does not have auto sync built in (iCloud is only between iOS). If you plan to use a stylus (highly recommended) – I'd suggest using Notability or Noteshelf. I like Notability a lot more.
  8. Yr Blues macrumors 68020

    Jan 14, 2008
    I'll give it a month before it gets lost or stolen. ;)

    It's been many moons since I've been in school, though … so I might be exaggerating.
  9. IconicM macrumors regular

    Jan 30, 2011
    Houston, Tx
    If you will be doing some heavy writing in Word or complex spreadsheets in Excel, then the iPad is not quite there. I should say, the hardware is good enough, but the apps (quick office HD and Docs To Go) are the ones that will leave you wanting. At least for anything more than basic operation.

    I suppose if you don't have compatibility issues, then Apple does make iWork, which I would guess is better than the basic offerings I have mentioned, but I have not tried them, so I can not really say.

    If windows phone dies out, then MS will probably get around to making office for the iPad. Of course that wont be anytime soon. So on that point, If I was going to get one device, it would have to be the MBA over the iPad.

    If on the other hand, you will not be using word processor and spreadsheet heavily, then the iPad is a dream. It will do the things you mentioned easily.

    I just got my iPad2 wi-fi. I was thinking I could tether it to my iPhone, but AT&T is coming down hard on such. So when the iPad comes out with 4G, I will get that one too. I wouldn't use the radio extensively, but there are times when there is no wifi around, and I wish I had one.

    Good luck.
  10. Signor S. macrumors member

    Aug 29, 2011
    To answer your question about 7, no you cannot use a USB flashdrive with the iPad. You can if you jailbreak (I believe it's called iFile), but otherwise no. The only workaround is by e-mailing docs to yourself or by using services like Dropbox.

    P.S. I would go for the iPad 2 32GB option. Enough memory to last you for future years in your studies and for your entertainment.
  11. Neokiller309 macrumors member

    Nov 15, 2011
    For what you need it for, It is worth it. And you're lucky. In most American high schools, if you have ANY sort of electronic device (Save a calculator) out in class, You get it taken.
  12. web500sjc macrumors member

    Oct 25, 2011
    I am college student in the US, this summer I was looking at a new computer, and was trying to decide against a slate/ tablet (either iPad or EEE slate) and a regular laptop). Eventually what it came down to is college stuff like typing and some substantial processing. although a tablet would have been great and easy to carry around, I needed a real laptop when it came to typing and other things. But on the flip side, now that I have a real computer for what i need it for - I wouldn't mind having an iPad.

    What I am saying is that if you have a computer already that you can use for typing (it is most of what you'll be doing) and heavier processing, then the iPad is a great addition. But at the end of the day I couldn't live with an iPad as my primary computer.

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