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[Article] iPad Pro and Apple pencil - first impressions

Jimi Wikman

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I have now had my iPad Pro for 2 days and it is starting to come together nicely. I have the basic programs up and of course I miss some features on Office 365 that is a bit annoying. I can get around most of them of course so it's not so bad. I have also tried some apps for notes and painting with varied results.

Using iPad Pro as my working tool is actually not bad at all. Mail and the entire Office 365 suite works fine, even if it is severely reduced in function. There are a few functions I miss more than others, like the arrange function, but I can make it work. File management works much better than expected even.

Notes was a big reason for getting the iPad pro and the Apple Pencil and at first I did not like it at all. Then I took a look at GoodNotes 5 and I was sold. It is so far everything I want in a notes app, but I am still trying it out. I tried OneNote as I am using it for other things, but I did not like it as much.

Drawing or painting was also a big reason for getting iPad Pro. So far I have started to play around with Procreate, but I feel it will take a while to get the hang of it. It is very different from Photoshop and Sketch that I have been using so far. Expect quite a few tutorials on Procreate and painting in general in the videos section in the future.

I also got Affinity Designer since I have it on my mac as well. I have not played around with it that much yet, but I will test it out as soon as I can. I also look forward to Photoshop later this year and I see many interesting apps like Comic Draw and Assembly I want to test out.

Typing on the iPad using the Smart Keyboard is surprisingly nice when seated. In bed when lying down I prefer the on screen keyboard however. Even though the Smart keyboard is quite small on my 11 inch iPad and I have big hands, it works very well. I don't feel that the keys are to close together, but the feeling is a bit different so it will take a bit of getting used to I think.

Using Apple Pencil feels great. I do tend to tap it a bit when working with it, which means that I switch to the eraser without wanting to from time to time. I can turn it off, but I keep it to train myself to use the pencil properly. I do feel that the glass surface is a bit slippery, so I have ordered PaperLike to test out. I could have bought something cheaper, but I figure I should test PaperLike since everyone seem to be talking about it right now.

Overall I am very happy with my iPad Pro and I look forward to take it for a testrun when I go to Moscow next week for work. I do not see any issues using the iPad Pro over my Macbook, so we'll see if that is the case once I get to really test it out for work.


This is my experience with the iPad Pro and the tools I have tested so far. What is your experience and what are the best apps for your setup?

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20 hours ago, Praveen S said:

Hi @Jimi Wikman

How do you think the iPad performs as a laptop?

I'm torn between the iPad pro and surface pro 7!😥

The only thing that is bothering me a bit is the fact that the Office suite only offer a web based version, which is very much watered down. I also can not work with other tools that are only for desktop, such as design tools like Sketch.

Other than that it works really well, especially now that you can add a mouse to it. I love to use the Apple Pencil for notes during meetings as well. That is worth the cost just there 🙂

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