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Assistance please - pre-purchase research

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  1. #1
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    Assistance please - pre-purchase research

    Hi,

    Now early retired & with no need of a full computer, I have been making use of Android tablets - unwilling to pay the premium price of the original ipad or ipad 2 when they both needed a computer & itunes to get them to work.

    In the UK, prices of the ipad2 are now comparable to, if not cheaper than, those of premium android tablets. The "new ipad" is the same when considered against the newest batch of premium android devices.

    Here is what I think I know, but am posting to try to get definitive answers from knowledgeable folk Could someone be kind enough to confirm or rebut what follows. Thanks very much.

    1. IOS 5 did away with the need to own a separate PC to own an i-thingummy. They are now available as standalone devices. I can buy & use one without needing a computer as well. Updates to the OS are done over the air.

    2. I can open an account on the app store & get apps without itunes or a computer

    3. I can transfer files to an ipad via email attachment or via Dropbox without a computer

    What I don't know...
    1. Can I play mp3 files on an ipad without itunes on a computer
    2. Can I play mp4 videos on an ipad without itunes on a computer
    3. Can I play flv videos on an ipad without itunes on a computer
    4. Are there alternative browsers that "cheat" flash content into being visible
    5. Can you get BBC iplayer or other on demand services on an ipad without itunes on a computer
    6. Can I "factory reset" my ipad without itunes on a computer
    7. Can I back up my ipad to iCloud without itunes on a computer

    Generally, I guess I am asking if the ipad is now fully standalone & can be used without iTunes - which has to be on a computer AFAIK.

    And seeing as I am being a nuisance & asking a lot - am I best advised to buy from an Apple Store, & do Apple repair or replace if an ipad develops a fault within the warranty period.

    Thanks for taking the time to read this - I look forward to some replies if you can advise at all

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  3. #2
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    Hi there--welcome! I see that you have quite a bit of questions listed. You are better off trying to ask some of these questions in separate threads and/or by searching first to see if you can find the answer to some of yours.

    Welcome to the iPadForum! This Forum offers so much information related to the iPad and its use. The IPF has many discussion topics related to: Acessories, Help, Apple News, Hacking, Gaming, Business/Education, Special Needs and Health.

    The iPadForum also includes a Regional Ipad Group for international users across the world. This is a wonderful area to "find" members from your own country.
    http://www.ipadforums.net/regional-ipad-groups/


    If you have not done so, please take a look at the iOS 5.0 and 5.1:
    http://itunes.apple.com/us/book/ipad...70308101?mt=11
    http://itunes.apple.com/sg/book/ipad...09611900?mt=11

    Finally, please read the rules!
    Forum rules - everybody please read!!

    iPad 2 ~ Wi-Fi ~ 32 GB | MacBook Air 13-inch 4 GB RAM/128 GB | Apple TV (3rd Gen) | iPod Classic 80 GB | iPod Touch 32 GB (4th Gen)

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    Quote Originally Posted by janner43 View Post
    Hi,



    1. IOS 5 did away with the need to own a separate PC to own an i-thingummy. They are now available as standalone devices. I can buy & use one without needing a computer as well. Updates to the OS are done over the air.

    Yes. You can do over-the-air updates without a computer.

    2. I can open an account on the app store & get apps without itunes or a computer

    Absolutely!

    3. I can transfer files to an ipad via email attachment or via Dropbox without a computer

    Again, absolutely.

    What I don't know...
    1. Can I play mp3 files on an ipad without itunes on a computer

    Yes, but...

    2. Can I play mp4 videos on an ipad without itunes on a computer

    Yes, but...

    3. Can I play flv videos on an ipad without itunes on a computer

    Yes.

    4. Are there alternative browsers that "cheat" flash content into being visible

    Yes-ish. The iPad will never play Flash. However, many folk have found workarounds. See this link/thread for more: http://www.ipadforums.net/ipad-faq/54703-flash-ipad.html

    5. Can you get BBC iplayer or other on demand services on an ipad without itunes on a computer

    Yes. Although the BBC player is only available to those in the UK...

    6. Can I "factory reset" my ipad without itunes on a computer

    Yes, but...

    7. Can I back up my ipad to iCloud without itunes on a computer

    Yes.


    Generally, I guess I am asking if the ipad is now fully standalone & can be used without iTunes - which has to be on a computer AFAIK.

    And seeing as I am being a nuisance & asking a lot - am I best advised to buy from an Apple Store, & do Apple repair or replace if an ipad develops a fault within the warranty period.

    Thanks for taking the time to read this - I look forward to some replies if you can advise at all
    See my replies above.

    Apple has come a long way and the iPad is useable without a computer - mostly. However, to play songs and videos, you'd have to put them into a different app than the stock one (should you wish to do more than streaming). Granted, that's not difficult, but if you have a lot of songs, using WiFi or 3G may be more difficult (it will take time to put things onto the iPad...). But, I know people who have initiated the iPad in the store the day they bought it - and then never went near iTunes again. And that was before iOS 5 and the over-the-air updates! So, I'd say yes - but not as convenient.

    For you, I'd say your best bet would be to get the iPad from the Apple store and has them do the initial set-up. Then, I recommend buying the two-year extended plan (hopefully, it's available where you live). That way, you can contact Apple for assistance whenever you wish. it's a bit pricey, ($99.00, USD), but for those without a computer - or the desire to "fiddle" - this would be a good deal.

    A factory reset on the iPad is normally a very easy process. If your "stuff" is backed up to the iCloud, then it should be no trouble. However, you could have issues (just because the iPad is a computer). But, if you buy the extended care and service plan - then you could let the Apple Geniuses help...

    All in all, I'd say this was a good option for you - especially given the fact you've been using tablets and so know they are not as robust as a computer. In that aspect, the iPad is no different. If you are comfortable with a tablet, with it's limitations (its never going to be a full-blown computer with all that entails), then I'd say, for you, an iPad would work great.

    So, that's my opinion. I'll be interested to see what others have to say. Oh, and please holler back if anything I've said needs more clarification.

    Good luck in your knowledge search and in your decision.

    Marilyn
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    Marilyn - thanks very much for your informative reply It is very, very helpful.

    When you say "yes, but" & suggest I would need a different app, then that's fine. Do you have any recommendations for one?
    I suppose I should say I am no computerphobe - I go back a long way with various OSs & worked in a senior role in a major company in the UK responsible for electronic publishing of major websites & media content - but that's why I now just want a slick device that is low impact & works for my now completely domestic requirements

    My use of mp3s, mp4s & our digital photos is very minor - but without access to itunes I want to ensure that I can still view our jpgs & vids & listen to the handful of mp3s we have

    I'll research AppleCare - thanks for the tip

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    Quote Originally Posted by janner43 View Post
    Marilyn - thanks very much for your informative reply It is very, very helpful.

    When you say "yes, but" & suggest I would need a different app, then that's fine. Do you have any recommendations for one?
    Well, back when I had music on the iPad, I used an app called "Groove Shark 2" ($3.99, USD). I liked it a lot and you could do sorts of arranging and stuff right on the iPad. If I remember correctly, you could donwnload music right to it. it's been a while since I've used it - so I don't remember much more about it. That might be one app to look at, though I am sure there are tons more...

    Quote Originally Posted by janner43 View Post
    I suppose I should say I am no computerphobe - I go back a long way with various OSs & worked in a senior role in a major company in the UK responsible for electronic publishing of major websites & media content - but that's why I now just want a slick device that is low impact & works for my now completely domestic requirements

    My use of mp3s, mp4s & our digital photos is very minor - but without access to itunes I want to ensure that I can still view our jpgs & vids & listen to the handful of mp3s we have

    I'll research AppleCare - thanks for the tip
    Oh, I completely understand! Sometimes you just want something simple so you can just use it. That's the main reason why I got my iPad. It was for couch-surfing in the evening. it's turned out to be so much more ... so be warned.

    Good luck in your decision-making.

    Marilyn
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  7. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by janner43 View Post

    Thanks for taking the time to read this - I look forward to some replies if you can advise at all
    Heya Janner43,

    Most of your questions got answered by Marilyn already, but I figured I'd mention that if the MP4 videos you have play on your TF, they will play on the iPad as well. The iPad 1 and 2 have one limitation in that they can not exceed 720p. The iPad3 can handle 1080p videos of course.

    I would suggest, if possible, to stick iTunes on something. While not required, it does make things a bit easier.
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    Thank you both

    One subsidiary question I have concerns File Managers.

    On Android, (& windows, Linux, mac OS) I am used to handling things through a File Manager (eg Windows Explorer). I think I am reading that this isn't possible on an ipad. That can't be correct, can it? How would you manage files without a file manager app?

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    Quote Originally Posted by janner43 View Post
    Thank you both

    One subsidiary question I have concerns File Managers.

    On Android, (& windows, Linux, mac OS) I am used to handling things through a File Manager (eg Windows Explorer). I think I am reading that this isn't possible on an ipad. That can't be correct, can it? How would you manage files without a file manager app?
    Very true, there is no files management capability on the iPad - each app maintains its own files. So, you would have to remember which app has what file.

    You could, however, have one app (such as Goodreader) that can act as a files manager of sorts in that you can have all your files in the app and use the "Open In..." function to open that file in another app. The only thing about that is that the new app makes a copy of the file and Goodreader keeps a copy, so you have duplication. You'll have to clean out your apps of old files every now and then.

    Or, a lot of people use online storage, a majority of thick come with their own (usually free) app for online storage management. For example, I use Dropbox and when I go into the app, it displays all my files in a Windows Explorer-like fashion. I can then elect to open any of the files in a compatible app. Again, the file is copies to the new app, but many apps have a syncing capability where you can update the online/cloud file with any changes.

    All of this is a result of Apple decision/theory of sand boxing. This is a security measure to prevent one app ("program") from being able to access another or the whole iPad system. It really helps keep the iPad safe and secure against viruses and such (for now) - although it does end up in pretty interesting workarounds by the consumer.

    Hope that clarifies/answers your question.

    Marilyn
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    Thanks again Marilyn

    Yes, that explains it well. It also probably means that the Apple closed system is still too restrictive/controlling/big brother-esque for me at this time

    The android system - without rooting - is just about the right balance between a "full computer system" & an easy to use/enjoy device it would seem.

    I do appreciate the advice, however, and will continue to muse...

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    Hi I have iPad 4g 32 gig bought extra cloud storage approx £15 per year run my music from iPad etc v don't need my laptop I invoice
    From iPad to customers via wifi its a great device. I have Bt home hub installed it all seems very fast apart from 4g I get from orange a bit slow.


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