In the last 6 months I’ve really changed the way that the iPad fits into my daily life. It’s a strange one given I lived on iOS for so long but changes to my work life meant that it no longer worked for me in everything I did. When I had a full time job I didn’t need to push the iPad too much. I used it for recording podcasts, blogging, editing my photos, daily emails etc, watching video – well basically everything I did outside of work.
But, when all that fell apart my use case and apps I used changed.
I was given an outreach programme when I left work that helped with CV building, finding a job and interviewing etc. This meant using a site that didn’t work particularly well on iOS. This also meant that I had some great support from them but via Zoom, which again didn’t work well on iOS and I needed lots of additional notes as reference.
When I started looking at jobs I wanted lots of notes, I needed LinkedIn quick copy and paste and again zoom for interviews (with the addition of having reference notes). I also needed to be as comfortable as possible given I was interviewing.
What I found is that using my iPad Pro fell apart for me really quickly, I really stretched multitasking and all the swiping and with the accidental losing of current apps I’d had enough so something needed to change if I wanted to be more efficient (for me). I also found that using something like Zoom and also wanting multiple reference notes on screen just didn’t work at all. I definitely wasn’t comfortable or able to feel prepared using it for this.
So I blew the dust off my 2016 12″ MacBook and updated it to the latest macOS. I hadn’t really used it in at least a year and wasn’t sure whether it would be up to the task. My iPad Pro went and I replaced it with my iPad Mini so that I still had one around if I want to take notes with the pencil (one of the main things I miss) but it didn’t get used.
Using the MacBook actually started to reduce the stress of using my technology again. It’s not a knock on the iPad but for me at this point in time it was a breath of fresh air.
I could suddenly have loads of windows and multiple notes, I could run Zoom in a separate window at exactly the size I wanted and I didn’t need to worry about accidentally swiping a multitasking window away. It was all seamless, again for me, this is very specific to me maybe. The main benefit though was it reduced my stress to using it and when already in a stressful situation I needed all the help I could get.
I should add that with some Big Sur efficiencies the MacBook all the way from 2016 with 8GB RAM still works great for me. It’s a testament to how good Apple hardware and software working together is and one of the reasons I switched to Mac in the first place. I occasionally get stuttering on a busy web site but in day to day for things like CV building, video calls, podcasting, email and job searching I don’t see a difference between this and our 16GB 5K iMac. If you’re after an affordable, very portable laptop you should definitely look at one as an option if you’re in the market.
At the end of the day it’s all about workflows, what works for me won’t work for you. For me at this uncertain time I needed some comfort to using my technology because I have enough friction to deal with already.