6 Reasons Ordinary Pastors May Benefit From the iPad
I’ve been waiting for something like this – a handheld device that I could consume information very easily and most comfortably. Apple may have done it and I think it will have a number of benefits for those in pastoral ministry.
If you missed it, here’s the video of the new Apple iPad:
Will/Should ordinary pastors and people use the newly unveiled Apple iPad?
This pastor probably will, and I think many, many will also.
1. Magazines/Newspapers can now survive. The only reason I subscribe to a print newspaper right now, is because my wife wants the coupons from the Sunday paper. I NEVER read the print paper. But I do subscribe to a number of newspaper and magazine RSS feeds. In fact, I can subscribe to the sections of the paper I want and skip the rest. I noticed that my wife was already starting to clip coupons from the internet. Outisde of my wife’s coupon newspaper, I no longer have any subscriptions to any print publications – and I don’t miss the mess. However, I would be interested in reading papers and magazines on an electronic device that I could hold in my hand and was bigger than my iPhone. Especially if I could cut and paste quotes and sections into Evernote and tag them. That would help me in quickly clipping, filing, and finding quotes and illustrations for sermons and doing so in a way that would syncronize across my platforms (iPhone, notebook, desktop). I could imagine that magazines and newspapers, who already include full color images and video on the web, will find new life in something like the iPad – the very thing they cannot do with something like the Kindle. It could be that the print newspaper and magazine industry just found a way to survive.
2. E-reading will be better. I know that there is a romance about holding a book and marking it with a pen. I enjoy it too. However, I do enjoy having commentaries and other resources on my computer that I can search, copy, and paste content into my exegetical notes when studying. My iPhone is too small for any sort of quality reading. While I have a small laptop, it’s still not a reader. I’ve looked through a number of recent e-readers and am impressed with the Kindle. However, 15 shades of grey is really underwhelming and seems so limited in what content could be included in a book. Furthermore, if the iPad will allow me to cut and paste from a book I’m reading and import it into Evernote, then I just found massive ease in collecting quotes. Currently, I mark it in a book and have to go back and retype the desired quotes into Evernote. We’ll see if cut and paste in books will be available – if so, this could push me over the edge and produce a new romance in e-reading. What would this device do for audio books also? I already enjoy using my iPhone with them. If iPad will sync my audio books with my iPhone, it’s another selling point for me. If the books remain as cheap as they currently are, I’m in. The thought of replacing the stack of books I have on my night stand with a half inch reading device has me ready to buy.
3. E-notetaking is now possible. I’ve mentioned this already, but it is something I could get more excited about. Evernote allows me to collect, tag, find, and use notes across multiple platforms. I will be underwhelmed if copy and paste is not an option for the e-books through the iBookstore, but if it is, I could see myself using an iPad for much of my reading just so I can easily collect quotes. My iPhone now allows me to synchronize any of my documents on my notebook or desktop and I can edit them and keep them synchronized. However, using the small screen of the iPhone is not really all that easy for significant editing of documents. iPad may answer this frustration more easily. With the portable keyboard for iPad, and the way I keep the majority of my documents in the cloud, I could see the iPad pretty useful and could eventually replace a notebook (not quite yet, though).
4. Ultra-portability of information. iPad will allow me to synchronize all of my media, making books, pictures, notes, documents, music, and the internet easily accessible in any electronic platform I currently have. Supposedly, iPad will run all of my current iPhone apps. That would keep my mail, calendar, tasks, video editing, weather, well . . . everything synchronized.
5. Consolidation of gadgets. I almost bought a Kindle. But I wanted to wait and see what Apple came out with. I’m still not into the grey, touchless, small screen. I also am not too interested in adding another gadget to my briefcase. If I could just carry my phone and an iPad which would allow me to have communications and the majority of my documents and a host of books all in two easy to manage gadgets, I’m interested. Sitting down at a Starbucks, jumping on their wi-fi and reading from an iPad is far more appealing that having to take the time and space of pulling out my notebook, even as sleek as it is.
6. Future communications options. iPad already includes e-mail and no one can match what Apple does in the mobile internet browsing world. So far, no camera exists on the iPad for Skype calls and no phone capabilities either. However, I could see these as future elements added. In fact, AT&T has just today allowed VoIP through their 3G network, which would turn the iPad into a communications device. Though I’m sure I won’t hold a 10 inch device to my ear, I’m quite sure Bluetooth headsets, a speakerphone, or wired ear buds would work with the iPad, and is actually even more appealing to me that holding my iPhone to my ear. I could see making Skype calls on this device very easily and from anywhere and the size being much better than the thought of video conferencing with my iPhone (if they ever make a front-facing camera).
I can only imagine how a small and simple device like this will be used in other fields. One church member suggested that I could easily use the iPad to preach from. I’m not too sure about that – but . . . . How will education be affected by such a portable device? How will presentations be affected? Is this the modern clipboard? As Apple often does, this is the first iteration of something that will develop more and more. I was not interested in the first number of iPods that were introduced. I waited until iPhone 3G came out. It may be worth the wait for a future iPad iteration. But because it is already based on a number of already known and thought-through platforms (OS X and iPhone OS), it has an appeal even now. Think back on iPhone 2.0 software: who knew that so many unbelievable apps would be developed across so many professions. The iPad may just open that many more.
Here are a few interesting articles hours after the iPad revelation:
Publisher, Michael Hyatt was underwhelmed and isn’t even blogging about it. Yet, read what he wrote about the original iPhone, his second thoughts after he bought one- he’s now an iPhone-aholic – and has had at least 2 of the 3 versions.