Let me start by saying this up front. Cloud storage, file sharing along with the current and future capabilities of the iPad Pro line are setting the groundwork for the demise of the laptop.
I'm a professional photographer and spend lots of time on the road. My mobile kit consisted of the Nikon D5, lenses, filters, tripod, portable lighting gear, reflectors, a MacBook Pro and some miscellaneous items.
I hated traveling with the MacBook Pro: it's heavy, not ergonomically friendly and I find it awkward to use as a photo editing tool. After a considerable amount of research, I ended up purchasing the 12.9" iPad Pro2 and the apple pen two months ago. I haven't touched my laptop since.
The A10X fusion chip along with the iPad's 125Hz refresh rate finally delivers enough power and speed allowing it to perform very complex tasks: It's a super computer in a light weight, compact form. The touch screen and gesture controls make it versatile and incredibly intuitive to use. At home, I use a Wacom tablet and an iMac Pro for all my editing, so the iPad in conjunction with the apple pen feels like a natural extension of my desktop setup.
In addition to the iPad's low price point, updated hardware and lightweight, Apps such as Adobe Lightroom Mobile, Affinity Photo, Photoshop Express and Procreate gave me a few more reasons to make the switch.
Lightroom is my primary editing tool, and the mobile option has about 95% of the functionality of the desktop version including the ability to import and work with a wide variety of raw files. It conveniently sinks all my photographs to the desktop via Wi-Fi and the Creative Cloud. The intuitive nature of the app is a joy to use, and I prefer it to the desktop version. Affinity Photo is setting the standard for high-end photo editing on mobile platforms and rivals Adobe Photoshop which is currently unavailable for the iPad.
Lastly,the iOS 10 file system takes a while to get used to. The Photos app works seamlessly with Lightroom Mobile. I can download, edit, save and share my files effortlessly. Recently, I had a look at the beta version of iOS 11 coming out this fall, and it seems clear to me that the ease of use and functionality of these iPads could rival or even surpass the MacBook as the preferred mobile platform. For any creative professional looking for an alternative to their laptop, the iPad now is worth considering.
• Retina display
• 10-hour battery life
• Capacity up to 512GB
• Touch screen and Gesture control
• Apple Pen: 8-10hours of use per charge
• Adobe Lightroom Mobile App • Free download from the App Store with minimal functionality. You can unlock the full version by purchasing the desktop version and signing up for Adobe Creative Cloud.
• Affinity Photo • $49.00 from the App Store
• The touch screen can get quite greasy over time.
Solution: I carry some cleaning fluid and a microfiber cloth with me.
• You can't charge the iPad and use the lighting connector headphones at the same time.
Solution: I use my phone to listen to music when I'm editing and charging.
• It takes about 4 - 4.5 hours to fully charge.
Solution: I charge overnight.
• Requires an adapter to transfer photos from a card reader, camera or SD card. When uploading photo files, the iPad needs to be plugged in during the photo transfer so get the correct adapter! (It's just one more thing that's easy to lose or forget.)
Solution: I have a particular spot in my camera bag for the adapter and include it in a check list before I leave for a job.
• Adobe Lightroom Mobile App: For some reason, it doesn't have a spot healing tool! Hopefully, this will change in following updates.
Solution: Photoshop Express or Affinity Photo
My Configuration: iPad Pro2 I 512GB I 12.9inch I A10X Fusion Chip I Wi-Fi