Testing the Logitech Crayon

ipad, Review, Tech

I’m using my iPad Mini full time these days and finally picked up a second Pencil. This time I went for the Logitech Crayon, at £59 for my uses it seemed the best option. First impressions are it feels lighter, it’s more comfortable to use (than Pencil 1) and less slippery.

I’ve just used Noteability to sketch out a few ideas and seems great so me so far. I’ll update once I’ve had it for a few weeks.

Some initial thoughts on iPadOS

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I managed to avoid spoilers this year before the keynote and was pleasantly surprised by Apple creating a fork of iOS just for the iPad. It’s long overdue and I’m hoping it means each year now we’ll see improvements to the iPad. As someone that lives on the iPad I was really excited to give the beta of iPadOS a try. In the 48 hours I’ve had to play with it here are some of my favourite things about using it.

New home screen

Not a huge change but significant enough to make a difference to how I use it.

I have my most used apps on the right, now it’s more compressed they fit nicely. On the left I have Calendar and Reminders widgets reminding me about my day. This is a positive improvement and although I’d like to see the option to remove app names I’m pleased with the implementation.

Reminders

Reminders has had a big overhaul and in my time using it I loved it. Very buggy at the moment as to be expected but fitted the way my brain thinks about tasks. I enjoyed being able to create a Today list free from having to pick a specific time. I’ve raised over 15 radars with Apple on issues and suggestions so I’m hopeful it’ll become my only to do list manager come September.

Quick path typing and small keyboard

I was surprised at how much I loved using this little one handed keyboard on my 10.5″ Pro. I’ve also come to love (and miss now I’m off the beta) the swipe keyboard.

Sidecar

I installed Catalina on my MacBook and was very impressed with being able to use my iPad as a second screen. I didn’t use the pencil but simply as a second screen for info.

Photos

Big update for Photos and it looks particularly great with dark mode. Took me a while to get used to the new default view when you launch the app but definitely missing the beta. Looking forward to using it again when the public beta launches.

Dark Mode

Again took a while to get used to but found it easier on my eyes. I enjoyed using the default apps in dark mode, particularly Reminders. It’ll be a mode a lot of people will enable and then go back to white I imagine but for those of us that prefer a darker look it’s been implemented well.

Performance

I’m running on my 10.5″ iPad Pro and even though its beta 1 I had no performance issues. That said I can’t recommend running the beta at the moment. It’s so buggy right now and I’ve experienced several iCloud issues.

Overall thoughts

There are a tonne more improvements including files and multitasking but to be honest I don’t use those apps or features much. I’ve tried to highlight the ones that made a difference for me using iPadOS. I’m planning on a full review as we get through the beta cycle. I’m so pleased that Apple have recognised that the iPad is its own thing and needs a dedicated development path away from the iPhone. Now iPadOS is a thing we can expect to see improvements year on year and fingers crossed will push the iPad forwards at an increased pace.

How to use a mouse with the iPad on iOS 13 (iPadOS)

ipad, Tech

I was very surprised when I saw mouse support being rumoured and it also wasn’t the keynote so I forgot about it. Then I saw a few things on Twitter including this amazing tweet from Andy.

I’m amazed that already I’m loving it and so will my RSI hopefully. I ended up getting a cheap wired mouse that I plugged into the camera connection kit. I wrote this post up with my Smart Keyboard and mouse attached.

Now I had it connected I needed to head into SETTINGS,ACCESSIBILITY, TOUCH and then turn on ASSISTIVE TOUCH.

Once enabled you see a round cursor (that fades when not in use) that you can move around and click on touch targets.

Within the ASSISTIVE TOUCH above you can tweak the settings to your liking including reducing the tracking speed and what each mouse button press does. I use left to click and then middle to go home. Oh and if you have a scroll wheel then you also use it in settings and some apps.

I’ll write up more but just wanted to share some initial thoughts.

My most durable Apple product

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Using my Apple Pencil today I realised its the most used and durable product I’ve ever owned from Apple. As you can see it’s been nibbled by our cat, it’s been dropped lots of times and just gets tossed into my bag. I still have the cap and I’ve fitted a pen clip so that I can attach it to my iPad cover.

I’ve broke or had warranty issues with my very other Apple product I’ve had but my Apple Pencil keeps going.

My iPad Mini home screen

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I’ve refreshed my devices onto the beta so been setting up my iPad Mini again. I don’t restore from backup so it’s always a fresh look at my apps when I do this. As you can see I’ve moved back to Things to keep my week a bit simpler as I had a lot going on. Still using Bear for my notes and writing. Another change is using my iPad Mini to journal exclusively. I’ve uninstalled DayOne from my iPhone in fact. Social apps have moved here also off my iPhone.

I’m planning on writing up more posts on how I’m recording music on iOS and want to relax a bit more so I’ll be playing more guitar and freelance writing less. This is part of realising I’m taking on too much in terms of projects. More on this in a later post.

The iPad Mini has almost replaced my iPhone

ipad, Tech

I’ve been wanting to spend less time with my iPhone XS and it turns out getting the iPad Mini was the fix I needed. As I write this I realise I’ve not charged my iPhone for two days and left it at home multiple times by accident. I’m finding I’m using social media less, creating more and being more intentional with my devices. I’ve also found that I’m using my DSLR more, to the point I’m thinking about getting a new smaller camera to take around with me. I didn’t expect this to happen but it’s been a positive move for me.