iPad and Software

#1 Posted by Zomgfruitbunnies (748 posts) -

What kinds of software can actually be installed onto an iPad? My dad just bought one and intends to replace his laptop with it, and I'm not sure if that flies. I know little about Apple products and IOS, so I'm not sure how to explain it to him. He wants to basically move all of his work related stuff from his laptop to the iPad, namely Outlook and other applications he uses for work. Assume the iPad is jailbroken.

Of course, if discussion involving jailbreaking is against forums rules, mods please close this.

#2 Posted by Jimi (1126 posts) -

He likely won't be able to completely mirror his laptop, however the iPad has an app for just about every task a laptop can do, provided he doesn't use specialised, high intensity programs for things like video editing/programming/modelling etc.

Just have a look around the app store and online. Tested used to do a feature on iPad apps, not sure if they still do.

#3 Posted by Zomgfruitbunnies (748 posts) -

@Jimi: I notice that you use the term "app" a lot. Are apps the only form of software that one can install onto an iPad, or can one do the same as one does with PCs where one downloads an installer from the web? If there are no app versions of the software, will the PC method of installation work?

#4 Posted by Jimi (1126 posts) -

@Zomgfruitbunnies: Unfortunately the way iPads work is that applications native to windows/macintosh will not run on it as it is built on iOS rather than OSX/Windows. A good rule of thumb is anything that will work on an iPhone will work on an iPad. Because of this the regular PC/Mac installation of applications will not work on an iPad, everything that you install on an iPad must be installed through the app store (unless you jailbreak, however this will not change the fact that Windows/Mac applications won't work).

#5 Posted by Zomgfruitbunnies (748 posts) -

@Jimi: So only programs that are designed to run on the iPad will work, correct? Windows/Mac installers are nonfunctional on the iPad?

#6 Posted by Jimi (1126 posts) -

@Zomgfruitbunnies: That's right, sorry if you got one thinking otherwise. They are essentially just big iPhones with a nice screen.

#7 Posted by Zomgfruitbunnies (748 posts) -

@Jimi: At the very least he should still be able to use it as a mobile mail client, I guess. Thanks!

#8 Posted by natetodamax (19170 posts) -

There is an app called Pages that basically functions like Microsoft Word. If you get a wireless printer for the iPad you can print documents that you make on it. A physical keyboard designed for the iPad makes this process a bit easier, but I have no experience with it myself.

As far as transferring documents goes, maybe Dropbox is what you're looking for? I'm not entirely sure.

#9 Posted by Sargus (723 posts) -

Whether or not your dad will be able to replace his laptop with an iPad depends on what he wants/needs to do with it. E-mail, calendars, web surfing, maybe a little document writing? You can do all of that on the iPad without any trouble whatsoever.

But if he needs to, say, do photo/video/sound editing, remote into an office (there's a Citrix app for iPad but it needs a lot of back end tweaking to make work), anything like that, he might be in trouble. I don't know how many people can actually use an iPad as a "work" machine, other than full-time writers (and even we stick to our PC/Mac word processors for the most part). As you've realized, you can't just put any sort of PC/Mac software onto iOS, even when jailbroken.

I don't know a ton (at all) about the upcoming Windows 8 tablets, but there's a fair possibility they'd be better suited for your dad if the above applies to him.

#10 Posted by Zomgfruitbunnies (748 posts) -

How does one browse the App Store, anyway? Is the App Store a singular entity across the world or is it separated by region/country? I'm asking because my dad only reads Chinese.

#11 Posted by juanvaldes (181 posts) -

@Zomgfruitbunnies said:

How does one browse the App Store, anyway? Is the App Store a singular entity across the world or is it separated by region/country? I'm asking because my dad only reads Chinese.

You can browse the store via the "App Store" on the device or via iTunes on the desktop.

#12 Edited by Sooty (8082 posts) -

I would not recommend this move, the iPad is no replacement if you need a work machine. For basic word processing it's a so-so experience with a bluetooth keyboard, it's still not quite comparable to a real machine running Word or Pages.

I have an iPad and wouldn't ever want to replace my MacBook Air with it for my relatively light work. (99% essays)

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