Welcome to the second installment of my “On an iPad” series where I talk about how to be productive on an iPad. I currently use an iPad mini 2 as my main computer and while that may surprise you, there are a lot of benefits. That is another post, though.
Writing (or typing) on an iPad is not as hard as my might think. I have completed class assignments, posted social media updates and even written full blog posts (like this one) using my iPad.
Now for the good stuff!
I write with a lot of apps. I write short pieces that are only a sentence or so to post on social media, and I have also written blog posts and even college papers. The apps I use to write the most include Microsoft Word and OneNote as well as Google Drive/Docs.
There are also a lot of writing apps that will create a simple place to just write. I haven’t used these, but I have heard great reviews. There are tons of apps to choose from to make writing on an iPad much easier.
I also write using Safari if it is something quick, like editing a typo for a blog post. Typing is involved in a lot of iPad apps, even if it is short. You have to type to search on Google or YouTube. And the on screen keyboard is actually pretty good.
If you do a lot of typing on an iPad, it is recommended to get an external keyboard to make typing easier. I have not made that leap yet, because I can type fairly quickly with my thumbs. And with keyboard improvements such as autocorrect options and the ability to create shortcuts, typing is really easy.
If you think you might use you iPad for typing a lot, give the on screen keyboard a try. You might want the feel of a real keyboard, but if you like the on screen option, you can save a lot of money.
How I Work
As I said, I do a lot of typing and writing on my iPad. I have even used a stylus and a notebook app to “write” on my tablet. Overall, I love using the on screen keyboard, because it is there when I need it and not when I don’t.
I use my iPad mini in portrait mode and type like I do with my iPhone. If you hold down the keyboard button, you can split or undock the keyboard to make reaching the keys easier. I tend to use the regular docked keyboard.
You can also use Siri and dictate what you want to type, or switch between languages (good if you want to write in multiple languages).
I love being able to type almost as fast as with a real keyboard, because it means I don’t have to lug my laptop around for a lot of work I do.
Does it Work?
Writing on any tablet is certainly not easy, and not everyone will like it. If you do try it and like it, it can make your work much more portable.
You can use an external keyboard if the on screen one is not your speed. The external keyboards will be smaller then normal keyboards, but they can still give you the touch typing experience.
You can get the Apple Bluetooth keyboard or another brand and connect it to your iPad. If you do a lot of typing, a keyboard case is nice. If you don’t type a ton or you want the option to have the keyboard not be there, then an external keyboard is great.
Should you Write (or Type)?
I think it depends on how you like to work. If you are an on the go person, using a more portable computer to write with is smart. If you like to sit at a desk or you need more power than an iPad has, a laptop might be better. Typing is always going to be a little easier with a physical keyboard, but it is doable with an on screen keyboard when you don’t have anything else.
Think of your needs and go from there.
Next up in this series, I am going to talk about using social media. You can do a lot and manage social media really well from an iPad. I will explain the apps I use and how I keep up with social media from my iPad.
That is how I write on an iPad. Have you written a lot with a tablet? What did you like or dislike about it? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter (@HannahHaefele)!
Thanks for reading!