My iPad Review
I was first introduced to the iPad near the end of 2013 by my sister who had just recieved one as a Christmas present. Immediately upon seeing its beautifully slick design and being shown a couple of games and other applications. Before that I knew nothing of touchscreen technology and had only a vague idea about how it worked and how it could help me make my computing more fun and more mobile. I Knew that in 2014 I must start saving for one of my own. At that time they were quite expensive buy because I do a lot some of my work on the go I could see that it would be a good investment. Luckily I had recieved some money for Christmas from an Aunt and I was also paid at the beginning of the first month of 2014 – my year of the iPad.
Before I bought one I decided I must do some research about what owning an ipad would bring to the table in terms of electronic communication, my ability to study Mandarin on the move, gaming, taking photos and making videos. But before my research was complete I had learnt that iPads offer a world of possibilities I hadn’t yet conceived of. The first thing that struck me was the sheer depth of applications available from the Apple iStore: there was literally an app for every function that I could possibly think of. I also realised that owning an iPad would reap huge benefits for work and my social life, not only this but it would also help me to store music, film and other data which would always be available on a handy, portable device.
The model I plumped for was a 64GB called the A1460 iPad 4th generation, released in 2012.The machine had inbuilt facetime, a 9.7 inch retina display and iSight cameras. I chose to purchase it just after Christmas in the January sales from PC World, for £449 pounds – quite expensive at the time but not in terms of the hours of fun and ease of communication it has afforded me since. When I bought it I realised that you can buy a SIM, a bit like a mobile phone where you can use your machine on the go. I decided not to buy it at the time, which was a good move because I had an internet connection at home and I knew I would be able to take advantage of the host of Wi-Fi hotspots in bars, restaurants, libraries, and coffee shops.
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- Vodafone customer service – Telephone: 0808 048 8408
- Tesco Direct customer service – Telephone: 0800 323 4050
- Currys customer service – Telephone: 0344 561 1234
Setting up the iPad was a piece of cake; I just followed the easy step-by-step instructions which automatically appear when you turn the device on after charging the battery. The process also involves creating a unique apple store ID password, also known as the iCloud. This will act as an extra security measure, coming up any time you want to purchase anything, for example a game or song, so make sure you keep a note of it somewhere where you can refer to it if you forget. You can also set up the ‘find my iPad’ setting when you are setting it up, this will allow you to locate and wipe all the data if it ever goes missing for whatever reason.
After performing all these tasks I was ready to start choosing some apps for my machine. Because I study Chinese I started by buying some games and other apps that would make this task nore fun. Here is a summary of the apps I chose – after careful research – below:
Pleco – This is a Chinese-English English-Chinese Dictionary with which you can translate your word and be give a wide sample of example sentences. A must for anyone serious about learning Madarin on the iPad.
Chinese Writer – This game allows you to study Chinese in a fun way. Basically it involves a series of Chinese character which fall from the top of the screen and you have to either trace them or re-create them after you tap on it. The aim is to write the character before it gets to the bottom of the screen uisng iPads unique touchscreen technology. The game reminds me of when my teachers used to ask me to write English letters in the air with my finger when I was learning to write English as a boy – unfortunately there were no iPads around in the 1980s! You can either make your own characters pack or buy the HSK ones for a few pounds – a great investment for people who plan on taking their exams.
Chinese Skill – Is another great game that you canaccess and is free. I recommend this if you would like to learn the basics.
The next exciting discover I made on my new machine was the camera, the pictures I was able to take were far better than I expected and it was great to be able to have this facility with me wherever I went. It was also extremely easy to upload the photos onto facebook or into an email. My photographs became more interesting when I was introduced to Snapseed, a photo-editing facility that added a new bite and moodiness to some of my photos. Combined with Pixlr I was able to take some impressive photos that looked much better that I thought possible on a small machine.
In late 2014 I attended a course on how to make videos using the iPad and started using iMovie. This video-editing app allows you to mix your videos together and add effects and audio. It allows you to make absolutely excellent professional looking videos for your website or impressive ones of family occasions. A brilliant addition to your portable machine.
If you are interested in making your own images or manipulating images you have taken then you can use Sketchbook Express which allows you to draw on top of your images. You can also add several images together by layering them to make brilliant posters for your business, with text and business details. Sketchbook is an absolute must for any businessperson who hopes to channel their creative skills into advertising their business.
Games are also a must on the iPad. There is a game for any occasion or purpose, including some excellent child-friendly onesthat are free such as: Lego Juniors Create and Cruise, Lego Juniors Quest, Lego City My City, and Lego Duplo Train. Adults can join in the iPad fun too with titles such as: Bike Race Free, Traffic Rider, and Score World Goals.
Banking on the iPad is easy and secure if you download your bank’s app and do your banking from your home internet connection.
Overall having an iPad has really transformed my opinion about computing before owning one I thought a laptop was the easiest and best way to do comouting on the go, however now I realise that touchscreen technology is the best way. Obviously it is good to have a laptop too, but anythoing I can do on my laptop there is a way to do on the iPad – and so much more.