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LurkingDev

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 24, 2020
4
2
Hello all!

Lurker here since a few months back. Looking for some input regarding the usability of the iPad Pro.
I currently own a 2016 MBP and have a company issued windows laptop. Whenever I travel I always bring both of my computers. The Mac for personal use such as general web browsing, some light photo editing and writing short stories and novels.
The windows laptop is used for dev work (visual studio, ibms RDI, sql) and online programming courses.

Whenever I travel I always bring both machines. I’m quite frankly tired of always traveling with two laptops and to be honest, I quite dislike my MacBook. It’s feels sluggish and buggy despite having around 300gb of free space and 16gb of ram. The keyboard has also been replaced three times in two years. Battery life is subpar compared to previous Macs. It’s the only apple product that I genuinely dislike. Always been happy with my previous laptops, but I’ve never liked this one.

I’m considering picking up a refurb MacBook, SurfacePro 7 or iPP with the new keyboard. I want something light and easy to use compared to my workhorse windows machine.
It will be used for some light photo editing, writing (10000 words:ish documents max), gaming and streaming. Has anyone gotten an iPad to go along with their main work machine? What’s your experience like? I find that whenever I get of work I don’t want to open another big laptop so I’m looking for something light, different and unobtrusive.

MacBook is also tempting for a real file explorer and office. Same with the surface, the con being that it runs windows like my work machine, pro that I can remove the keyboard and doodle with a pen.

I appreciate any feedback!
 

Beaverman3001

macrumors 6502a
May 20, 2010
542
32
That is essentially my use case for my iPP. I have a maxed out Mac mini with a Radeon VII for gaming at home, work issues 2018 MBP, and an 2nd gen (4th gen in the mail) iPP. When I travel for conferences (devops/sysadmin type conferences) I'll take my MBP and iPP. The MBP stays in the hotel and I use the iPP at conferences for general use, notes, etc. You can do a surprising amount of things with iPP now. Termius is a great SSH app, PgAdmin exists for iOS, etc.

At home if I'm not playing something like WoW, I'll just use my iPP for casual games like Hearthstone. Some of the iOS games are surprisingly good for what they are. And like you, sometimes I just want a more simple device to use at home. I thought about ordering a new MBA instead of iPP but ultimately decided I just didn't want another computer to manage in my life.
 
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ericwn

macrumors G3
Apr 24, 2016
8,035
5,450
A lot of the tasks you mentioned can be done with iPads. Can you afford to put the MacBook in a drawer for a week and just try the iPad to see if you can have a satisfying workflow there? If so, there’d be no better judge than yourself!

Best success!
 
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AutomaticApple

macrumors 604
Nov 28, 2018
6,510
2,867
Massachusetts
Hello all!

Lurker here since a few months back. Looking for some input regarding the usability of the iPad Pro.
I currently own a 2016 MBP and have a company issued windows laptop. Whenever I travel I always bring both of my computers. The Mac for personal use such as general web browsing, some light photo editing and writing short stories and novels.
The windows laptop is used for dev work (visual studio, ibms RDI, sql) and online programming courses.

Whenever I travel I always bring both machines. I’m quite frankly tired of always traveling with two laptops and to be honest, I quite dislike my MacBook. It’s feels sluggish and buggy despite having around 300gb of free space and 16gb of ram. The keyboard has also been replaced three times in two years. Battery life is subpar compared to previous Macs. It’s the only apple product that I genuinely dislike. Always been happy with my previous laptops, but I’ve never liked this one.

I’m considering picking up a refurb MacBook, SurfacePro 7 or iPP with the new keyboard. I want something light and easy to use compared to my workhorse windows machine.
It will be used for some light photo editing, writing (10000 words:ish documents max), gaming and streaming. Has anyone gotten an iPad to go along with their main work machine? What’s your experience like? I find that whenever I get of work I don’t want to open another big laptop so I’m looking for something light, different and unobtrusive.

MacBook is also tempting for a real file explorer and office. Same with the surface, the con being that it runs windows like my work machine, pro that I can remove the keyboard and doodle with a pen.

I appreciate any feedback!
The iPad Pro will likely suit you well for a long time. It's better than a MacBook in a few aspects.
 
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LurkingDev

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 24, 2020
4
2
Thank you all for the useful replies! I’ll be ordering a 256gb lte iPP 11... Soon. I think that I’ll wait a few weeks just to see how this global pandemic develops. Hope you’re all staying safe!
 
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SpitUK

macrumors 6502a
Mar 5, 2010
630
358
East Yorkshire, UK
You will be fine with the iPad. Worth looking at the new MacBook Air? Its had quite a spec bump with the quad core and 16Gb RAM.
 
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ericwn

macrumors G3
Apr 24, 2016
8,035
5,450
You will be fine with the iPad. Worth looking at the new iPad Air? Its had quite a spec bump with the quad core and 16Gb RAM.

No iPad has 16 GB RAM at the moment. Not even 8.
 
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Aibocyrus

macrumors 6502a
May 26, 2015
796
733
I think you’re making the right choice in grabbing an ipp. This is what I’ve just done. Sold my 2018 ipp and MacBook Pro to streamline my devices. I went with the larger iPad pro but that’s only because it will be my only device for everything now. It works for everything I need it to. Best of luck!
 
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LurkingDev

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 24, 2020
4
2
Thank you all for the added input (and sorry for the late reply).
Thought I'd add that I recently found out that work has a 6th gen iPad (just iPad) that's been gathering dust since June last year. Was allowed to borrow it for a few weeks. Thought I'd bring it with me on monday, put my mac in a drawer and see how I'll get along with iPad OS.
I know the hardware isn't really comparable, but at least the software is the same so I thought I'd familiarize myself with it!
 
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ericwn

macrumors G3
Apr 24, 2016
8,035
5,450
Thank you all for the added input (and sorry for the late reply).
Thought I'd add that I recently found out that work has a 6th gen iPad (just iPad) that's been gathering dust since June last year. Was allowed to borrow it for a few weeks. Thought I'd bring it with me on monday, put my mac in a drawer and see how I'll get along with iPad OS.
I know the hardware isn't really comparable, but at least the software is the same so I thought I'd familiarize myself with it!

Good idea, thanks for the update and best success!
 
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Coolpher

macrumors regular
May 8, 2008
236
94
Seattle,WA
I have been using an iPad Pro 12.9 or 11 inch since launch sold my MacBook Pro 15 inch 2015 and from there I’ve done all my main stuff on my iPad Pro and I’ve absolutely loved learning more and more of what I used to do can be done including video editing
 
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vc1212

macrumors newbie
Dec 1, 2012
11
6
Has anyone gotten an iPad to go along with their main work machine? What’s your experience like? I find that whenever I get of work I don’t want to open another big laptop so I’m looking for something light, different and unobtrusive.

My exact usage scenario is the one you described. I travel for work a lot, at least once a month and usually for a week. Whenever I travel, I have a work laptop (Thinkpad T25) and my iPad Air 2. I like to keep work and private stuff separate. The iPad will be for personal and leisure use... for example quick reading at the airport, watch netflix on planes, surf net in hotel, as a 2nd screen while watching TV in bed etc. It was so convenient as well as quick to use.

Now I just received my 2020 iPad Pro 11 and I think it can cover even more scenarios than the Air 2 - once the travel restrictions are off. I usually write journal on the Day One using my phone, but I will start to do that on the iPad when I get the Magic Keyboard next month. With its capability, am also thinking of getting the Pencil to help me past time on work trips with coloring or drawing apps.

All in all, if you are thinking of traveling with work laptop and an iPad, then I would say from experience that nothing beats this combo.
 
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pedregosa

macrumors regular
Mar 31, 2010
187
158
I do serious work on an 11-inch IPP. Once you master its multitasking gestures, and especially if you use it with an external monitor and trackpad when at a desk, it is a very versatile device. That said, I’m still tempted by the larger one!
 
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LurkingDev

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Mar 24, 2020
4
2
Thanks for the added replies.
Some observations after using an iPad (regular) for a few days..
  • This thing is smooth! The OS that is. For some reason my Macbook manages to feel sluggish, buggy and jittery despite being fairly new (2016 16gb 512gb i7 model). So far I haven't noticed any sluggish behavior apart from the occassional app reload.
  • Those bezels! Or well, lack of.. When I first saw it it felt like looking at a relic compared to my fairly bezel-free X. After a day or so of using I honestly didn't notice it though. Even touch ID was alright to use. The iPP series all solve these (non) issues, but I was surprised how quickly I got over it.
  • Apps were a mixed bag. They feel more in depth compared to my iPhones apps. Civ VI and Settera was a blast on the larger display! I don't own Affinity Photo for iOS, but it looks nice and I can imagine the pen and touch being a joyful editing experience compared to my laptops trackpad or an external mouse. That said I was disappointed that I couldn't have multiple documents in Pages or Word up and running at the same time. Tabbing between a few documents isn't necessarily an uncommon thing to do. At least I could have multiple PDFs open with PDF Expert. If theres a way to actually have multiple documents open please let me know! I'm sure the hardware can handle this without any issues.
  • Files. I have around 150gb of photos on my mac at any given moment, plus 2tb of photos and video footage on an external NAS. I have a nightly job setup on my mac that automatically syncs and backs up any changes I do on my computer to the NAS, a job is also triggered when I plug in an external SSD that will backup my laptop and the NAS. The NAS also holds a time machine backup. Now I don't know if any of this if feasible on an iPad. I doubt that I can automate backups, but what about plugging in or connecting to storage that's on my home network? Can I copy files from the iOS files app to a connected external SSD, or a NAS that's on the local network? Basically can an iPP be used in lieu of the Finder to synchronise my media and ensure that it's safely backed up at multiple locations? If not, can I store RAW files in folders directly in the files app when importing images from a camera, do my culling and editing, backup the images to an external SSD or when in WiFi range copy them from the files app to my Mac or preferably the NAS?
  • External monitor support looks.. lackluster. I haven't tried it myself, but it appears to just mirror the display with black bars on the side. It would be nice if the iPad could scale propely with any display and give the user a larger canvas to work on when stationary at a desk. I can see myself hooking it up to a USB-C display for photo editing or sketching, using it wacom style!
Overall I quite enjoy using the iPad. The apps are well designed and I see some true potential with the Apple Pencil in Affinity Photo. Typing was fine with a magic BT keyboard, though I missed the trackpad a lot! It's nice to see that trackpad support has been added and I'm excited to see the reviews for apples upcoming keyboard. So far I really like the iPad, but I'd preferably like to find some work-around solutions to the aforementioned bullets (esp bullets 3 & 4). If I were to buy an iPP today I would probably still have to bring my personal laptop to do what the iPad can't. Again, these issues seem to be software related and there might be good work-arounds, I've only done some limited testing so far.
If not, we'll see WWDC brings in term of software changes.
 
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