Be Careful For What You Wish For

Just before the unveiling of the new iPad Pro, Chris Johnson wrote a blog post (iPad Pro 2018 wish list) about things he would like to see on the new iPad. He is not alone asking for improvements to the iPad platform. I’m one of those myself.

First thing, precise input in the form of a mouse pointer.

I’ve enjoyed using keyboards with iPads for years now. Typing is less error prone and the ergonomics are far superior to using the on-screen keyboard. Mostly that’s because you aren’t forced to look down at the screen while typing. However, one big ergonomic wrinkle remains, you can’t place your iPad at the proper height or distance from your eyes while still comfortably reaching the screen for touch input.

The thought that comes to my mind is simple: this is not about a normal use. This is an “edge” case. Do we have to take care of all edge cases like this one to evolve a product ?

The second wish is about running Mac Safari on the iPad. The reason is because website tend to consider the iPad a big iPhone and for this reason the website presented will be a special version for the tablet which sometimes will degrade the experience. But there is an option we can use when browing the web on the iPad and this is to request a desktop version of the web site.

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What I would like to have is for a better download experience. Downloading files from a website on iOS is not exactly what we should expect. It is better than it used to be but yet this is a place where Apple should replicate the experience from desktop computers.

In summary, I don’t think we need to recreate a traditional computer with the iPad. Remember this scene from the iPad introduction. I’m always referring to this moment when thinking about the original intend of the iPad.

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Steve Jobs demoing the use of the iPad – 2010

[Update: The original post author wrote to me to say the “Request Desktop Site” rarely makes a difference. I tested it myself with my own blog and sure enough, WordPress kept pushing the tablet version of the website. 😕]

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