Using the iPad as an Extra Monitor

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Things task manger app on the iPad

This is something I find myself doing more and more of as the days of getting used to the iPad roll along – using it as an extra monitor alongside my MacBook Pro’s screen.  I keep the iPad in an Apple dock (possibly my favorite accessory so far) caddy-cornered just to the right of my MBP when I’m not using it / when working long stretches on the laptop.

In that position, it serves as a gorgeous picture frame, as I’ve talked about a little before – but I’m also starting to find it quite a useful tool, even while sitting in the dock.  For instance, I’m using it a lot now to have a quick check on my task list for the day, or other lists of things to do held in the excellent Things for iPad app.

I’m also using it – via the Digits app – as my go-to calculator, instead of the one I previously tended to use via a Dashboard widget on the Mac.  Digits fills up that lovely iPad screen, stores history across sessions, and is just a joy to tap away at compared to a measly little widget.

Quick weather checks are another thing I’m more often that not doing via the iPad while it’s nestled in its dock and charging away.  And quick checks of App Store prices or details as well.

Dashboard widgets are a faster option in a couple of these cases, and the Things desktop app is only a few taps of Command-Tab away as well – but that beautiful screen and the great execution of some of the iPad apps has got me switching over to it for these and other purposes quite a lot of the time. 

Maybe it’s just a sign of the honeymoon period with the device – I don’t want to leave it alone even when it’s docked or resting up after a long bout of usage and battery drain.

What are you doing with your iPad when it’s in its dock? 

Patrick Jordan

Founder and Editor in Chief of iPad Insight. Husband, father to a lovely daughter, Commander of the Armies of the North, dog lover (especially Labs), Austinite, former Londoner, IT consultant, huge sports nut, iPad and mobile tech blogger, mobile apps junkie.

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