Macbook Air or iPad Air?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by gadgetgirl85, Nov 17, 2014.

  1. gadgetgirl85 macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2006
    #1
    I currently have a 900 credit and was originally going to buy an ipad air but I'm thinking about whether to buy a macbook air for a couple of hundred more. I currently have a macbook pro which I take to uni but can be a bit cumbersome at times so was thinking perhaps I could take the macbook air. I can do the same with an ipad but its not as easy to do word/excel tasks.

    So I would be using it for: Taking it to uni, surfing the net, word tasks etc.
     
  2. ilikewhey macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 14, 2014
    #2
    if you're doing word and excel why are you even considering a ipad, ipad and productivity should not even be in the same sentence.

    we had this one girl in our group, she volunteered to take notes for our brain storm, every 6 seconds she has to ask us to repeat back what we said cause she couldn't dictate fast enough on the ipad. imagine you asking your professor to repeat what he/she said every 5 seconds :rolleyes:
     
  3. gadgetgirl85 thread starter macrumors 68040

    gadgetgirl85

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    Mar 24, 2006
  4. blesscheese macrumors 6502a

    blesscheese

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Location:
    Central CA
    #4
    The iPad is a consumption device, as in, reading email, reading web pages, etc.

    If you want to do *any* work--like write an email or write a paper, etc., then get the MBA.

    I have both...that's my $0.02.
     
  5. campyguy macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2014
    Location:
    Portland / Seattle
    #5
    For me, it's almost a wash for productivity. I do use Excel on my rMBP (both 2011 for the Mac and 2013 in Win 8.1 in Parallels) and on my iPad Air. My iPad also is an LTE version, with Verizon Wireless on an unlimited data plan so I don't have to worry about finding data in most places.

    What I do use with both of my devices is a Logitech K811 Bluetooth keyboard, which pairs with up to 3 devices. I can navigate on my iPad with the K811 as fast in Excel as I can on my Mac, but then again I have been using Excel since 1989 (when I started university). Excel on the iPad has autofill for formulas and other data, and it's easy to navigate about using the tab/arrow keys - so many other keyboard shortcuts are available too.

    Two of my attorneys use iPads with BT keyboards too with Word and Excel. I strongly disagree with the FUD that iPads are consumption-only devices. The only limitation with the iPad version is that one cannot script Excel via Visual Basic - and I've met only one other engineer who's more competent than I am in VB or Excel - and that was while designing a light rail alignment to modify a runtime approximation application I created about 20 years ago...

    Via Office 365 my work is synced to my OneDrive or Dropbox accounts, so I can pick up where I left off back at the office. I wouldn't hesitate to use an iPad with a suitable BT keyboard - I've never had an issue keeping up or being productive, and my attorneys have never asked me to repeat myself when working on their iPads.
     
  6. blesscheese macrumors 6502a

    blesscheese

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2010
    Location:
    Central CA
    #6
    I use my iPad with the ClamCase keyboard...it effectively turns my iPad into a mini-MBA, except, it weighs about the same.

    While just entering text is fine, if you want to move around the screen, there isn't an option for a mouse...you wind up taking your hands off the keyboard and poking the screen, which isn't exactly the most precise way of placing the cursor.

    I thought that by using the iPad and CodeAnywhere, I would be able to get more done, but it was so frustrating and slow, I jumped back immediately to my MBA.

    The iPad is great for me for reading journal articles, PDFs, etc., and for writing quick emails...it sounds like Office for the iPad is great, but overall, I think most (not all, but most) people, if you already have an iPhone, then an MBA makes more sense and is less duplicative/redudandant than an iPhone + iPad.
     
  7. Traverse macrumors 603

    Traverse

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2013
    Location:
    Here
    #7
    Well if you have a MBP perhaps you would enjoy the iPad.

    I have a logitech ultrathin keyboard cover and I take my iPad to school and take notes in Word and OneNote. I read and annotate PDFs between classes.

    Ultimately it comes down to do you want two OS X devices or two iOS devices? Also be aware that you will most likely need to brink your MBP with you every now and then.

    This semester I only needed to bring my rMBP once, the rest of the time I use my iPad.
     
  8. boogiedout macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2014
    #8
    Ive always read here and there that the iPad is purely a consumption device. Im here to disagree. In 2010 I got the first generation iPad, for university work, instead of a laptop. I used the iPad every day, Monday to Friday, on a Social Work placement. At my office it was the only computer I had, and had to use a MIFI to access the internet. During this 4 month placement I had a lot of research and assignment writing to do, and I did it all on the iPad onscreen keyboard. I wrote over 45000 words on that screen and never felt like I was missing out on any extra functionality. I will agree that it depends on the type of work being done, but for reading, researching and word documents it is perfect. Coming across a PDF and being able to read comfortably anywhere and still go back to a desk and type was great. I used 'documents to go' for all my typing, no Word then, and just the apple iPad case. I still use the iPad for watching films in bed, reading comics, ebooks and some researching, but after 4 years it shows its age regularly so now I'm using a macbook air. Love it! but wouldn't change the time I had WORKING on my iPad.
     
  9. NICKXXXXXX macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2014
    #9
    My main problem with iPad is that it does not have a real OS!!! Can't play MKV files etc as far as I know. If I had an iPad I would want to be able to use it as you do with a Surface.
     
  10. octothorpe8, Nov 20, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2014

    octothorpe8 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2014
    #10
    Yeah, you added a keyboard so your iPad is less crippled. Of course it's half-decent for just straight-up typing. Hell, you can pair your BT keyboard to your phone if you want to and the typing experience is about the same.

    But for anything more, iOS multitasking is clunky at best. Let's say you want to copy from text from one place to another: don't even begin to pretend you can take your hands off the keyboard, move up to that home button, double-press it, tap the other app you want to copy from, drag your finger around to select the text, go BACK to tapping that home button... I'm exhausted even describing it... in the time it takes someone on a real Mac to command-tab between apps and select text with a mouse or trackpad and command-tab back.

    I mean, if you want to go through all that, knock yourself out, but there's no way (yet) that an iPad equals a real Mac for versatility and productivity.
     
  11. campyguy macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2014
    Location:
    Portland / Seattle
    #11
    I'm guessing you've never used a BT keyboard with an iPad. Your post reeks of contempt of a person with no experience with the combination... So exhausting, whining so much, eh?

    Copy - Command-C. Paste - Command-P. Highlight - Shift-Arrow Key. Switch apps - hold down the "Square key" to invoke Siri and ask for the app. Close an app - press the "Square key". Etc., etc., etc....

    I have a "real Mac" - a $3200 rMBP, and I use it every day. I also have an iPad Air, and I use it every day - to email and other productive work. I use them both at the same time - the K811 allows me to switch between the two with a press of the button. Clients don't give a fsck about how I generate my work - only that its right, the first time. I speak from experience, doubters speak... - rather, whine because they don't know any better.
     
  12. Zwhaler macrumors 603

    Zwhaler

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2006
    #12
    Let's be real, if you are doing work, the iPad just doesn't cut it. As much as we want it to, using a "real computer" is almost always better. If you're using pixelmator, sure it is fine, but actual productivity software, for MOST people, is hands down better on the Mac. NOW if you wait for the iPad pro that might get really interesting. Otherwise get the MBA... the 11" ideally since the 13" isn't super duper lighter than your 15", and it makes for a better separation between owning the two products.

    ----------

    This!
     
  13. imaccooper macrumors regular

    imaccooper

    Joined:
    May 29, 2014
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #13
    Have both an iPad and a macbook air and it is probably 10 to 1 in how much more I use my iPad than my air.

    I take notes with it, use it with pdf's, etc. I don't need or want it to replace my computer for typing extensive documents, but it is perfect for going to class in college. For some reason people forget that the entire apple line is built to be different from PC / Android. Just like my iMac is built to be fantastic at several things but is inferior to a custom PC in other areas (i.e. gaming), an iPad is built to be fantastic at doing what it does. It provides an ultra light and mobile "consumption device" platform while at the same time allowing users to incorporate word/pages and powerpoint/keynote effectively.

    It annoys me when people try to say the iPad is useless at things it was never designed to do. Its almost like saying a hybrid is useless at being an offroad car. Well sure you might be right but the people that built it never intended for that to even be an option.

    To answer the original question, I would go for an iPad for taking to classes and hold on to your MBP for working in your room/house/office. That way, you can use each brilliant machine for what apple built them to do.

    PS: To the people implying/saying that the surface is better than the iPad, go by a surface and be happy with the device that you like better.
     
  14. octothorpe8 macrumors 6502

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    Feb 27, 2014
    #14
    Key part: you use them both.
     
  15. campyguy macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2014
    Location:
    Portland / Seattle
    #15
    I should have been more clear, since you're picking nits and taking what I wrote not within context of my desired point, choosing to use a few words to suit your point - I didn't write I use them both at the same time. I did write that I use them both, but should have added independently of each other.

    FWIW, I've surmised you've not used an iPad in a production environment, pretty much grasping for a reason to hold on to a skewed perspective with no experience or basis. I'm an engineer, small business owner, and technical writer with an iPad and paying clients. Stick to your abacus and Post-its, and I'll use my iPad.
     
  16. octothorpe8 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2014
    #16
    If by "abacus and Post-its", you mean my Macbook Air and Mac Mini, then ok, sure! I will, thanks.
     
  17. campyguy macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2014
    Location:
    Portland / Seattle
    #17
    A swing and a miss. By "abacus and Post-its" I was alluding to "Excel and Word", given the subject matter of this thread... :rolleyes:
     

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