Will the Apple iPad Pro Replace Your Laptop on Your Next Vacations or Cruise?

01 Jan

My faithful companion on a dozen cruises and vacations was an Apple MacBook Pro that I used to manage my photos, communicate with the outside world. and write books and articles. With the accessories, the outfit weighed about 8-pounds and cost over $2000. Last month I sold this gear and bought a 256-GB iPad Pro that weighs, along with its folio keyboard case and electronic pencil, less than 2-pounds and cost $1300. It's only 9x7" and it's less than a half-inch thick. Further, its processor is actually faster that the 2013 MacBook Pro and its screen is sharper.

Should you replace your full-featured laptop with one of these beauties? That depends on your workflow. A problem is that the iPad Pro only backs up to the Cloud rather to a hard-disk. This is great in Los Angeles but may be problematic at sea or 50 miles outside of Nome.  It also can't be connected to a high-res large monitor or to a mouse. 

Only a few photo software packages have been modified to work with it; although Adobe Lightroom CC has been beautifully implemented and is available for free. Or, you can pair it with a whopping terabyte of Adobe Cloud storage for only $9.95 a month, and it can be used on the iPad Pro plus any other device that Adobe supports.

In my case, this means I can run Lightroom CC on my iPad Pro and on my desktop MacBook Pro in my home office. Also, the CC version of Adobe software packages eliminates the Adobe cataloging system that has frustrated many Adobe users for years.

I expect that either Apple or third-party developers will solve most of the remaining problems with using an iPad Pro as your ONLY PC by permitting hard drives to be connected to the iPad Pro and modifying the operating system so that it will accept a touchpad, mouse and monitor. 

In the mean time, we'll see how the iPad Pro performs later this month when I'll bring it on the Seabourn Ovation, that is going from Singapore to Thailand, and from there to Cambodia, Vietnam and Hong Kong. Between the ship's wi-fi and connecting to the Cloud in ports, I'll be interested in how much of a problem not being able to download from -- or back up to -- a hard disk will be.

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