What's It Like Working With an iPad Full Time?

Even since the iPad was launched, I’ve been wondering whether it really could be used as a tool for work. So I was interested to learn that Shane Pearlman (of Shane & Peter, the company behind WWD’s redesign) had been been forced into using his iPad for work for the past few days — effectively running the company from his iPad. He describes his experience in a blog post.

Pearlman’s MacBook Pro met with an untimely demise just before a trip to Hawaii, and when his Time Machine backup proved to be corrupted, rendering his stand-by machine useless, he moved to his iPad full time. Overall, Pearlman describes working with the iPad as “doable,” and details both the good and bad aspects of it. (Note: Pearlman doesn’t mention it in his post, but his photo shows that he has Apple’s Keyboard Dock, which would definitely make working with the device easier).

The Positives

The iPad’s battery life (Pearlman can get an entire day’s work done on one charge), its touch interface, the number and quality of apps already available for the platform, and the overall experience of using the device all get the thumbs up.

The Negatives

Pearlman goes into much more detail on the negatives. Significantly, he complains about the linear workflow enforced by the lack of multitasking. He also notes that push notifications are more intrusive than Growl, and lists specific problems with email, AIM, Safari and the calendar.

The iPad as a Web Working Tool

The iPad still hasn’t been released here in the UK, so I haven’t had a chance to get my hands on one to assess it for myself. Unlike some of my blogging colleagues, I’m still not convinced I could justify purchasing one for my web working toolbox, but Pearlman’s experience proves that, in a pinch, you can certainly do useful work with one. It’s clear that software like SugarSync and Dropbox’s new mobile API are easing the clunky problem of getting files onto and off the iPad, which allays one of my biggest concerns about it, and the breadth of useful, high-quality apps already available for the device really is quite staggering, given the short amount of time it’s been available.

Have an iPad? Let us know the positives and negatives of working with it in the comments.

Related GigaOM Pro content (sub. req.): Why the iPad is Right for the Enterprise

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