I suspect the headline is something you either believe to be true or completely disagree with depending on your perspective. Just like Marmite, writing on the iPad is truly a love or hate affair. I’m firmly in the love camp and so today I’m going to try and convince the doubters and rally the supporters. Here are 7 reasons why the ipad is perfect for writing (almost)
1. One app at a time (kind of)
The original iPad had a real focus on using one application at a time. With the full screen mentality rather than the windowed environment, you have to focus on the text right in front of you. If you need to copy and paste some text, or look something up, you switch to a different application and look at it there. Sure there is now split screen multitasking on the ipad but it’s certainly not a distracting windowed view with taskbar constantly on display.
2. Markdown focus
The way the iPad works has helped promote a focus on markdown writing tools which are great for writing on the web. While this may take a little time to adjust to, it is certainly a quicker way to write without having to switch between keyboard and mouse to change the formate of text.
Check out these great markdown apps
3. Great apps
Linking on from that last point, the iPad has a range of great writing apps from tools like iWriter, Scrivener, Ulysses, drafts, word, pages and more. All of which help to do the type of writing that you need to do. Be that a quick email, a small document, a blog post or an ebook.
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Things start to get more interesting when you look at the easy automation available on the iPad. Tools which let you strip content from a webpage to a blank research document, or change a string of text to title case, add a link from your clipboard. Tools like Workflow, 1Writer and Editorial add some really power to your writing tool kit.
Check out these great automation apps
5. On the go
The iPad is super portable, even more so than something like a lightweight laptop. The helps promote writing wherever you are and at any time. Although writing in a coffee shop is a bit of a cliche of the wannabe writer, there is a reason. Coffee shop noise can help promote concentration, as can caffeine! Having a device that encourages you to get out can help.
6. Image editing
The iPad has a handful of useful tools for making great graphics as well. Tools like Snapseed, Pixelmator and Paper by FiftyThree – Sketch, Diagram, Take Notes can help you edit photos, create a collage or draw a graphic. If you are writing online, then images are essential. Even if you aren’t writing online, you might find this useful for drafting out your ideas.
7. Software keyboard shortcuts
The software is a controversial aspect of the iPad. For many of us who grew up typing on mechanical keyboard, its is very unsettling to hit our fingers on a piece of glass. If you are using a physical keyboard, then it can be more annoying to have to touch a screen every now and again, moving your hands up to the screen.
However, after some adjustment to a software keyboard, you can leverage the special keys for a specific writing application, the suggested words, and the highlighting shortcuts. This can make the software keyboard quicker than a software one.
The not so good side
Okay, I know that this isn’t the full story, there are downsides like the smaller screen, the difficulties if you need to post something to a complicated content management system and the constant switching between apps (plus cursors can be useful). However, in my experience, these downsides don’t outweighs the pros.
Of course, this post was written and published with only an iPad.
What do you think? Why do you/don’t you love writing on an iPad?