If you’ve been thinking about an iPad recently, it can be difficult to find meaningful differences between it and your iPhone – apart from the obviously larger screen. While the iPad and iPhone have a lot in common, the iPad has over the years received many features that make it a good buy together with your iPhone.
Look at things
Whether you’re watching movies, TV shows or YouTube videos, I think we can all agree on one thing: a bigger screen is always better. However, using your TV is not always convenient, especially if you just want to go to bed and watch Netflix. The iPad is still small enough to comfortably hold or see close-ups, while being larger than an iPhone.
The iPad Pro and Air even have 120 Hz screens compared to the iPhone 60 Hz. And although it is rare, something is registered in higher frame rates than 60, but it is still a nice bonus feature to have and helps future-proof tablets when higher frame rates are more common.
Power under the hood
In terms of performance, some iPads can also spawn desktops. The iPad Pro’s A12Z Bionic processor is not only the fastest you can get in a tablet, but one of the most powerful consumer chips on the planet. But you can only get the A12Z in the latest iPad Pro models.
Apple also recently announced the updated iPad Air, which comes with the all-new A14 Bionic chip. It’s not quite as nice as the A12Z Bionic, but it is is faster than the A13 Bionic found in the iPhone 11 series. The word on the street is that it is 15 percent faster and 30 percent more energy efficient.
Even the latest base model iPad now uses the A12 Bionic, which is the same chip used in the iPhone Xs, Xs Max and Xr – still quite nice phones. If you currently use something older than the Xs series, the latest base model iPad is a performance upgrade from your phone – and it only costs $ 329.
You can use a mouse
Using a keyboard with an iPhone or iPad is nothing new, but the iPad supports another peripheral that the iPhone lacks: computer mice. While the iPad interface is built with touch screens in mind, like most apps, it does not change the fact that mice are just more accurate. Precision only helps niche cases, but when it’s useful, it’s really useful.
While precision is not very important in most apps, the fact is that you can freely reprogram the mouse inputs to do what you want. This allows the mouse to either act as your primary way of interacting with the iPad, or as a way of performing common actions (such as opening the message screen or dock).
The ability to use a mouse also gives more freedom in how to use the iPad. If you use a wireless keyboard, you do not need to hand it over to press anything anymore – you can basically use it more like a regular laptop. This is especially true in the case of the iPad Pro, where the Magic Keyboard is located, which is the standard keyboard and trackpad combination that you can expect from a laptop.
When it comes to playing games, of course, the larger screen on the iPad is perfect. But other than that, the iPad is just a more comfortable device to play games on. If you want to play something more than a simple mobile game, you want to use a controller. If you use a phone, your options are quite limited to set this up conveniently, but there is lots of iPad cases which has a kickstand in some way.
And PC gamers will be happy to know that you can play with keyboard and mouse on iPad. This is great for games that require some form of aiming or inventory management – especially if you are not a fan of the touch controls that many of these games use. In competition games, this can also give you an advantage over the competition.
There is also the issue of power. Of course, more complex games will take advantage of some iPad models with more powerful chips. Console-quality iPad games like PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUND can run with higher graphics settings on the iPad Pro than the iPhone and even run at 90 FPS – with at least partial advantage of the Pro’s higher refresh rate display.
Drawing (Apple Pencil)
Apple Pencil is a king among pencils, and Apple has done a lot over the years to reduce latency and add new features to make the use of Pencil as enjoyable as possible. When you draw with it, the latency almost zero makes it feel good – it’s a big step up from other pens. It also works well for handwritten notes and writing / drawing on screenshots and documents.
The pen does not currently work with the iPhone, and it’s easy to see Apple’s reasoning as to why. The properties with a limited screen would limit the usability of the pen and artists would have a hard time drawing anything even a little complicated on such a small screen. While there is a stylus out there for the iPhone, they do not have the extra software and hardware integration that Pencil has with the iPad that results in such a great experience.
The second generation Apple Pencil is only available for the Pro series of iPads and has some nice features like a magnetic charging connection. However, the first generation is still a pen above average and is compatible with most of the recently released iPads (full list on the store page).
Apple has announced the iPad as something you can get real work in desktop class. And it has really come true over the years. The iPhone’s limited real estate properties make it difficult for intensive work to do on it, but with the iPad you can comfortably fit a lot on your screen at once.
This is especially evident in areas such as video editing and graphic design. On the iPhone, apps for these workspaces are simplified and must be to fit the smaller screen. This is fine, but if you want to do professional work, you need more advanced tools, and there are many apps that use the iPad’s larger screen to create these advanced tools.
Luma Fusion is a great example of this, as it is basically a desktop video editor available on the iPad. Not only does the iPad’s larger screen give the user interface the space it needs to breathe (the iPhone version is very cramped), but the app also has significantly more options and features than other mobile video editors.
And the things we’ve already discussed such as mouse support and the superior hardware of some iPad models also help with intensive workflows. All this rolled into such a sleek and portable device is unmatched anywhere else, and truly makes the iPad an appealing product for professionals. And it only becomes more true with time when the iPad models become more powerful and the apps are made more robust.
Do several things at once
While it is useful to switch between several open apps on the iPhone, it has nothing in the iPad’s shared view. This allows you to, yes, split the screen between multiple apps so you can view them all at once. So if you are watching Twitter and want to open a link, you can keep your timeline open while browsing the site. There is even some integration with some apps so that more actions can be performed in split view.
For example, if you have the Photos app open next to an email, you can drag and drop a photo into the email as an attachment. And if you work on your iPad, the benefits are even clearer, as you basically have multiple screens available for multitasking between different productivity apps. Are you working on a spreadsheet but need some information from your notebook app? No need to constantly switch between them here – just keep them both open at the same time.
In comparison, the iPhone’s more standard version of multitasking where you can switch between multiple apps, but still useful, is more restrictive. After all, it’s much more annoying to quickly jump back and forth between a couple of apps than to see everything you need to see at once.
Browsing the net
Nowadays, most websites have mobile versions, but some still do not – and many offer a watered-down experience. There may be no content, the user interface may be difficult to navigate, and it only gives a bad time. On the iPad, however, the surfing experience is desktop-class thanks to many improvements to the iPad version of Safari (for example, a better download manager).
iPads now have access to all the same desktop versions of websites that you would have access to on your Mac. This is a massive set from the iPhone and also opens the door to using web apps. With this version of Safari, you can not separate your browsing experience on iPad from the desktop (except using a touch screen).
Like the iPhone, the iPad is a great technology that can do a lot for you. Whether you work or relax, the iPad has many unique features compared to its pocket-sized cousin. This is why the iPad still has a place in many people’s lives today and it is worth considering for many people.