When Apple Inc launched the first generation iPad back in 2010, Apple CEO Steve Jobs had made it clear that the iPad was not better than a laptop, just cheaper than one. It was more than clear that Apple was not keen on eating into the laptop market by introducing the iPad - an iPhone-iPod touch crossover which facilitated a bit of computing. But curiosity did take over, and people began wondering what would be ideal for them - an iPad or a laptop.
iPad vs Laptop: The Long Pending Debate
Come 2011, the launch of second generation iPad - Apple iPad 2 made the task of choosing all the more difficult as Apple made it a point to do away with all the limitations of its first generation tablet in the new device. Even though logically it should be a tablet PC vs laptop comparison, the iPad has become more of a brand within a year of its launch, and therefore it is better of to compare iPad vs laptop, instead of tablet vs laptop. After Apple launched the successor to the original iPad - the 2nd generation iPad earlier this year, it triggered an all new iPad 2 vs laptop debate, and as always we were not able to hold ourselves back from joining it.
Which is Better - iPad 2 or Laptop?
While a tablet and a laptop both happen to be portable personal computers, the two differ from each other by a significant extent; and which of the two is ideal for you will depend on what you intend to use this device for. Specifically referring to the second generation iPad, it is an advanced tablet which acts as a platform for various activities right from listening to music and watching videos to computing and Internet surfing. With so much to offer, it isn't surprising that this device is pitted against laptops, which are also evolving very fast. But is the iPad 2 better than a laptop? As a computer, not really!
The foremost drawback of the iPad 2 - when it is pitted against a laptop, is the absence of a physical keyboard. While a virtual QWERTY keyboard does exist - along with an amazing cover which doubles up as a prop to put it in a position ideal for typing, the experience is not as smooth as that of a laptop - especially when you have a lot of typing to do. As a student you require to do projects and assignments and as a working professional you may need to prepare power point presentations. Sadly, neither of the two tasks would work fine with a virtual keyboard, even if it happens to be a QWERTY keyboard which the iPad 2 sports. The virtual keyboard in iPad 2 is ideal for typing mails, but typing lengthy texts or doing assignments and power point presentations can be pretty annoying.
Other than a physical keyboard, laptops also edge out the iPad 2 in terms of USB ports. While the thousands of apps available at the official App Store may give iPad 2 users a high of a sort, one can't download some of the most useful apps from the Internet and install it on this device. While the multitasking feature finally makes a debut on the iPad, the experience is far from multitasking on a laptop. Not to forget, the problem with multitasking also affects your web experience on the iPad 2. At the same time, the 256 MB RAM available with the iPad is not sufficient when it comes to surfing. The 2nd generation iPad does boast of a 10 hour battery life, but it has a built-in battery which you cannot replace like you would in a laptop.
That must have helped to determine which is ideal for you - Apple iPad 2 or laptop. The second generation iPad does boast of two cameras which make FaceTime video calling possible. It does have the ability to play various audio and video files. It can also double up as an e-book reader and a gaming device. But all these things are also possible on the laptop, depending on which brand you opt for. In fact, Apple's very own MacBook Pro can be an ideal choice if you are to choose between the iPad and a notebook.