IPad Pro....It Is What It is...and What It Is Not

What's going on fellow tech lovers, this is Erran from #StayTechdUp and today I am going to give you my thoughts on the "mixed bag" Apple calls the iPad Pro.


First, before we get started, just a disclaimer. The iPad Pro is not a laptop replacement, I did not purchase it for that reason, it is a really good compliment device. With that out the way, let's dive in.


The iPad Pro is a great device that really struggles to answer where it fits in the workflow for the average person. With the "Pro" badge most want to place it in the realm of professional content creators, but that is not entorely the case here. This tablet can cover a wide area of use for the average consumer and professional alike. We are going to  take a look at three areas that make the iPad Pro what is it, and frankly what it is not.


Number one, we are going to dive into content consumption. Let's face it we have bought or have thought about buying an iPad for this sole reason. No matter if you are a binge watcher of Hulu or Netflix, avid YouTube buff, or just love holding websites in the palm of your hand; the iPad has been the king of this arena for a long time. It's something magical about being able to interact with content at your finger tips on a screen larger than your average smartphone. The iPad Pro does an amazing job in continuing that legacy. The huge display just seems to suck you into what you are viewing. It displays so much more information on the screen at once than your older iPad models. It makes you not want to put it away even if your battery icon is blood red. That's what great about it, it's a huge iPad Air. With four stereo speakers pumping out huge sound, OH MY GOD it is such an experience! On the flip side of that same coin, you start to realize "Damn this thing is huge and it becomes unwieldy". There is some fatigue to holding it for a long period of  time and you begin to question is there a such thing as too big? This is where you see that there are trade offs you have to make to have a device this massive.


Secondly, as I stated in the disclaimer earlier, can this be a laptop replacement? The short answer in my opinion is no! But wait let's take a deeper look. There is plenty of power in the iPad Pro, trust me when I say this thing hauls. There are several options for keyboards and the screen is definitely plenty for everyday use, so why not? Well to be frank it's iOS. The iPad Pro is at least 2 generations ahead of the software. Sure you can get some basic work done with the massive AppStore from Apple but you do not have access to the file system and let's face it, no matter how well designed an app is it still lacks a lot of the fundamental elements that you get with the full desktop applications. Now with all of that said I have been using my iPad Pro exclusively over my MacBook Pro for the past seven days and I must say I don't miss my MBP. Ninety percent of my day to day normal interactions with my MBP is either on the Internet or can be achieved by opening an app. Also if most people are honest with themselves you will realize the same. We all live on the Internet and no matter if it is social media, checking bank information, or just word processing (like this review I'm writing from the iPadPro) it can all be done on this device. And unless you make a living off of content creation; touching up a photo or editing a short video it can all be done from the iPad. Noticing a pattern here? The iPad Pro gives us this duality of what it is capable of doing with some trade offs.


Lastly, we have the price of this device, which seems to get the most attention when it comes to making a decision of should I take the dive or just wait. This is a hard one for me because I went to get the iPad Pro at least a dozen times and 11 times I talked myself out of it because of the price. I have the 128GB Wifi+Lte which will set you back over $1100 bucks....ouch! This is where the iPad Pro does not give you that "two sides of the coin" option......or does it? Let's face it $1100.00 is nothing to laugh at, but let's compare what you are getting. You get a device that can edit RAW photos and 4K content, it rivals the power of 70% of laptops out there , and you get one of the best designed and built devices around (in my opinion). To compare, if you were to get a Surface Pro 4 or any 2 in 1 device to compare in the performance you will spend around the same amount of money as you would with the iPad Pro. Dare I say it again another "mixed bag"?


To sum it up, it's like I said in the title, the iPad Pro is what it is....and what it is not. It's a great device for content consumption due to the huge screen, but the screen size can become  overwhelming. It is not a laptop replacement, but with the power and the fact it has replaced my laptop (for basic things) for the past 7 days; it is possible. The price is high, but compared to a really good quality machine of like kind and caliber...no so much so. Bottom line is if you are still on the fence about picking one up, think about exactly what you will ask when you do. Honestly for just content consumption get Air 2 and save some money. If you even think about asking for more don't rule out this two headed monster Apple calls the iPad Pro. 



The Internet of Things

The Internet of Things

What’s up tech family, today's blog is appropriately entitled The Internet of Things: Explained. 

The Internet of Things? What is that?  Why should I care? What does it mean for the future?

First, let’s address this interesting phrase; The Internet of Things. Look around you right now there are various devices connected to the internet in your home or office. For the most part all your devices do is get updates until you tell them to do something else. This is all done through your internet connection. Most of your devices aren’t aware of one another’s existence unless you have them networked. Even then, your devices will demand you to make them “talk to each other.” With the Internet of things, you should see a more integrated and “self-aware network” between your devices. 

Let's take a look at an example. You probably use a cell phone as your alarm clock, so we will start there. After you dismiss your alarm, the same phone turns on your smart tv and tuning in to your favorite podcast or playlist to get your morning started. You then get a quick review of your day, as well as a departure time reminder, just to make sure you get to where you your going on time all this info displayed on your TV. 

With your schedule outlined, you head to the bathroom. As you energize in the shower you can still hear the playlist in the bathroom overhead speakers. As you step out the shower and getting dressed, you smell your favorite drink brewing in the kitchen courtesy of your smart coffe maker. You then enter the kitchen, pour a cup of coffee, and grab some creamer from the fridge. As you pour the last little bit, your fridge creates a calendar reminder addressing your need for more creamer. It also sends a message to your local market to confirm the creamer's price and to make sure they have it in stock.

You grab your tablet and review documents for your meeting today, which begins at 9am. You already know have to leave the house by 7:20am to make it to your office by 8:30am, because you want extra time to prepare. While reviewing documents, your tablet notifies you of an accident and you need to leave in the next 10 mins to be on time. You rush out the house to your car that is already warmed up for you. Your doors automatically locked behind you thanks to the NFC in your phone. 

Oops! In your haste to leave you left your tablet and all your info for the meeting at home. No worries! Your car gives you the option to email the docs to your office, or remind you to go back and get the tablet. 

You get to work on time, kill your presentation,and impress your client. Sounds like a very good day if I do say so myself . Even better is the notification you receive as you are driving home from work, reminding you to stop and pick up more creamer for your morning coffee. 

This is your perfect day in the Internet of things. It sounds like something from a movie but a day like this is definitely a possibility.  All your devices are set up to become “self-aware” of each other. Imagine how your network could make life easier for both you and your family by working and adjusting "on the fly" to accomodate your daily routine and activities.

By the way, when you finally get home, you see your favorite show has been pre- recorded for you since you had to stop to get the creamer.

Tell me what you all think! leave some comments below. I dare you to start a discussion on this topic. How would you like the Internet of things to work for you? 

As always tech family, remember to #StayTechdUp!


Google+ vs. Facebook

In the tech world today there are two major players when it comes to social networking, Google+ and of course Facebook. Both have their pluses and minuses, no pun intended.

One of the most obvious differences is the number of users. Facebook has approximately 1.11 billions users active as of this year. Google+ on the other hand has about 500 million users. With the huge gap in active users, a lot of people feel that Google+ is a second social media service, which is the furthest thing from the truth. Facebook is great due to the amount of the users it has, you can catch up with old friends and colleagues that you have lost touch with, but it size is also in many ways its downfall. Remember when Facebook first started and you had to have college email address to join? The crowd was controlled at that time and therefore the experience was as well. Now it is filled with middle school children and an older generation that is just discovering social media with a few sensible adults sprinkled in for color. The quality of the posts that you read on Facebook has drastically declined since its start and part of it is due to its size. If it isn't a request to play a ridiculous game, a video of some one fighting, or the famous"If I don't get a million like then the world will end!" post you would not have any noteworthy information.

Google+ on the other hand reminds me of the Facebook of old, it still has a nice controlled and what I normally find a much more mature crowd. Your experience can be tailored to your individual liking. The privacy settings are second to none, and the Circles idea is the greatest thing since Gmail. (I had to laugh at that last one myself.) Not to mention if you live in Google's ecosystem of services and devices, the integration of Google+ simply just works. It's amazing how if I want to download an app from the Play Store, I can see who in my Circles has this app and if they wrote a review I can see what exactly they love about the app. That is Genius! I also find that the interaction on Google+ is much more engaging. People actually discuss the post and interact with one another other than just hitting a "like" button. Information is actually exchanged and a most of the time I learn something from the discussion or in rare moments teach someone something else they did not know. To take a line from Apple, it's all about the experience on Google+

Not to seem like I am bashing one and uplifting the other, I do feel that Facebook and Google+ has a place in the social media atmosphere, after all I use them both daily. Facebook has the numbers, therefore if I am looking to connect with someone I have lost contact with, Facebook is the go to site. On the other hand if I am looking to gain some information and really discuss an issue or learn something new for the day there is no other place to go than Google+. For right now I will continue to bounce back and forth between the two to fulfill need of daily social media, that is until all my friends learn about Google+...then again based on the history of Facebook maybe I don't want them to know.