New Development: iPads vs. SMART Boards

There are several note-taking applications available for the iPad, but tonight one of them was updated, resulting in a new educational use of the iPad.

WebSpinner is a app development company that created the note-taking application called “Paper Desk.”. Although a couple of other applications seem to have better touch recognition for writing notes with a stylus (I recently bought a Pogo Sketch Stylus to use with the iPad), such as PenUltimate–Paper Desk has several killer features. First, you can type or write in the app (or both). Second, you quickly change pen colors. Third, and this is *the* killer feature, you can export what is written on a “whiteboard” to the VGA output accessory offered with the iPad.

To my knowledge, this is the first app outside of stock Apple apps that allows the user to tap into the video out mode.

This means that a teacher could use an iPad as a wired SMART Board (of a type), and I’d imagine that other apps will tap into this feature as well. Another suggestion: SMART needs to make a SMART Notebook for the iPad. Sure, this will (for now) require an iPad to be physically connected to a VGA cable, but we’ll see wireless (Bluetooth 3.0) video connections in the very near future.

Paper Desk is $1.99 in the AppStore.

Here’s the potential: $499 iPad & $30 iPad VGA adapter vs. $2000 SMART Board.

(Remember that you’ll need $50 of software for the iPad, including the iWork Suite, Paper Desk, and other apps)

We’re not there yet, but we’re close, and if a district had the choice of outfitting one room with a SMART Board or three (plus) with an iPad, which way should it go?

One other item: Paper Desk has a “Lite” version, which is free and has the whiteboard VGA function, too. If you have an iPad, and an iPad to VGA adapter, you need to download the lite version and try it out.


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