Tag Archive: Apple iPad

Battle of the Tablets

Ever wonder the difference between Google Nexus, iPad, and Microsoft Surface?

We took a look at the product specifications, as described on the Apple, Microsoft, and Google Web sites, and compared the information to help you decide which tablet is best for you. All tablets are based off of the 32 GB:

iPad Air Microsoft Surface 2 Google Nexus 10
Depth: .29 .37 .35
Battery: 10 hours 10 hours 10 hours
Weight: 1 to 1.05 lbs 1.5 lbs 1.32 lbs
Display: 9.7” 10.8” 10.005”
USB Ports: no yes yes
Camera Yes Yes Yes
Printing: Only with AirPrint On most computers Only with Google Cloud
Microsoft Office No Yes No
Split Screen: No Yes No
Price: $599 $449 $499
iTunes Yes No No
Kickstand No Yes No

If you have other apple products, sticking with the iPad will be beneficial so that you can sync all devices. Also, you can download and have access to textbooks on the iPad, whereas the other tablets you have the ability to download books, but there is no indication of the ability to read and download textbooks. Microsoft Surface 2 does supply you with Microsoft Office, however, you can download the Office apps on iTunes and Google Play. In addition to the cost of the tablet, expect to spend at least $100 in accessories. Each tablet brings something different to the table. It is important to do your own research and find the tablet that is best suited for you.

The benefit to having a tablet is that you do not have to carry or purchase a laptop. These devices are lighter and easier to transport. The Downside: Printing your notes or documents may be challenging.

7 Legal Apps for a Law School Student

1. FastCase: This free app available for the iPhone, iPad, and Android allows you to search for cases that have occurred in all 50 states. See the FastCase Web site for more information.

2. Want to know more about your Supreme Court Justices? The app called PocketJustice gives you all the information you need in the palm of your hand. This app is $0.99 and available for the iPhone, iPad, and Android.

3. iJuror is a fast and easy way to keep track of your jury. This app costs $4.99 and is available for the iPhone and iPad.

5. TrialPad allows lawyers to update court files during the actual hearing. Lawyers can hook up any monitor or projector to their iPad to play videos or display images on the screen. This app is $89.99 and available for the iPhone and iPad.

6. Constitution allows anyone to review the Constitution for free.

7. Black Law’s Dictionary is a well-known law dictionary now in it’s 10th edition. Costing $54.99, it is available for the iPhone, iPad, and Android. The free online dictionary is available at: https://thelegaldictionary.org/

New LexisNexis App for iPad

For those of you who are in law practice or hope to be in the near future, it is becoming clear that you will want to exercise every advantage you can to make your contributions as a lawyer as competitive and innovative as you can.

As in many professions, the use of technology to leverage your skills to greater efficiency is a boon to law practice.

Lexis and Westlaw and now Bloomberg Law are anxious to stay relevant in a world that is in an app frenzy.  Not to say that many apps are not valuable, in fact there are myriad apps that address specific needs very well.

Lexis Nexis’ release of TextMap for iPad leverages this mobile platform for those reviewing transcripts in TextMap  6.2 .  If you are not familiar with TextMap, it is a transcript summary tool most commonly used for summarizing deposition transcripts.

This product is a far cry from what we used for deposition summaries back in the early 1990’s when I was a young law student looking for extra work … “Depo summaries my boy!  That’s what you should do!”  At least we had WordPerfect 5.1 for DOS back then — much better than a manual typewriter — I’m not THAT old.  But in the end it was high pay, highly manual, and high eye strain!  A terrific combination!  I couldn’t hack it.

Facts of life: There will be depositions in law practice.  Where there are depositions, there will be transcripts.  Where there are transcripts there will be transcript summaries.

Yes, you can hire someone to take the transcripts for you but in the end, every party needs their own depo summaries.  Who’s gong to summarize your depo transcripts?  You?  Get a tool.  TextMap is a popular solution and now with the iPad app, you can do it on the run (while you are sitting in the hall outside the courtroom waiting for the next thing to happen).

This is not an endorsement for TextMap.  Think of it as more of an endorsement of getting tools that work for you.  In the end, I found that I wasn’t cut out for depo summaries at all so I’m hardly the person to recommend any product in this area BUT if it makes it easier, I’m a fan.  It’s certainly worth a look.

Screenshot of TextMap for iPad

Daily Finance: LexisNexis TextMap App for iPad Allows Litigators to Review Transcripts Anytime, Anywhere

Law Technology News: LexisNexis App Reviews Transcripts on iPad



Product Review: Dropvox

There’s good news for iphone & ipad users looking for a simple and effective way to record, store, and share  audio from your iDevice. Dropvox from Irradiated Software allows iDevice users to easily record high quality audio straight to your personal dropbox. Set up is  very straight forward, enter your dropbox credentials, and you are ready to record!

Of all the products I’ve tested for recording and sharing voice memos via iphone, Dropvox has been the most user friendly, and is extremely reliable assuming you have a strong internet connection. The only major drawback of this product is that without a strong network connection, be it 3g, 4g, or wifi, you will lose your recording if dropvox is used with no connection. On the flip side, however, dropvox eats up no additional space on your iDevice storing hard copies of the recorded files.

So if you are an iDevice and dropbox user, Dropvox is a powerful addition to your tool set. You can capture lectures, create podcasts, record meetings, perhaps memoires for a new book your writing. Whatever the purpose, dropvox offers a simple way to to record, store, and share your recordings as you see fit. At a cost of $2.00, I’d say that’s money well spent.


Requirements: Compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad. Requires iOS 4.0.2 or later.

Are Tablets Suitable for Academic Use?

With the launch of the iPad a not quite new industry was given a fresh clean look. Tablet computers have been around in various forms for years, but it took the iPad to bring tablets to the mainstream. This raised an important question for businesses and educational institutions. Can a tablet be effectively used in an educational setting? Many schools sought research grants to determine exactly how well a tablet fit into a student’s academic toolbox. Pepperdine tested iPads in various settings, and the School of Law even tested a hybrid tablet/e-reader in a classroom setting.

The SOLIS team had a chance to test the iPad with common accessories, including the keyboard stand. I typed a blog post both with and without the keyboard to determine the viability of replacing a traditional laptop or netbook with a tablet. At the time I did not think it would be worth the effort to have to bring all the accessories everywhere one went simply to be able to have a laptop experience on a cool new toy. As time has passed, I have begun to reconsider.

I recently took my Android tablet to an academic seminar. Part of the reason I bought my tablet was to have a lightweight, internet-capable device with which I could take notes, check email, or look up any relevant websites presented in a lecture. I have been using a netbook for conferences for the last couple of years, so this seminar was my first chance to field test a tablet.

With one minor issue regarding available power outlets for recharging, the tablet performed exactly as needed. I did not use any accessories, and typed my notes using the on-screen keyboard. The pace of the seminar allowed me to take short-hand notes, with varying levels of detail. I did not need to write copious notes, as there were online resources available. In the specific context in which I was using the tablet for taking notes, it performed quite well.

This field test, along with tests during most of my meetings this year have helped convince me that tablets can be useful both in an academic and business setting. That being said, I would still recommend keeping the netbook or laptop on standby in case you need some extra power or a handy attached keyboard. There are times when a tablet simply cannot provide the support you need.

As tablets are continuing to improve, they can be useful in an academic setting. We are not quite to the point of using them exclusively, but the option looks good in the not-to-distant future. I was quite satisfied using my tablet to take notes in an academic seminar. Tablets have certainly come a long way in a short time. I look forward to seeing how the industry grows over the next few years. Until then, test out your own tablet, and see if you can use it effectively for notes, research, or other academic use.

Christmas Shopping Advice

I’m often asked about my recommendations for students, faculty and staff when it comes to personal technology purchases at this time of year. Some of the advice is clear (don’t buy a Blackberry), but more often there is a subtle judgment. Right now for the Pepperdine School of Law community I would like to offer some advice about bargain Android tablets.

I love my Android phone and I am a fan (though not without reservations) of Google’s product design and support. However, for those of you looking to make the extra investment in time as well as money to try some of the less expensive alternatives to the iPad provided by Google-partnered manufacturers, there’s good reason to be cautious.

Right now the Android eco-system is very much like the early days of Microsoft’s Windows environment. Google is dependent on the manufacturers to deliver on what they promise and the reality is that some can and some won’t. There was a time when folks would make some poor purchases on PCs because the Windows logo was showing on the screen.

As much as I would like to see Android develop into something as similarly successful in computing market as Windows, that takes time and commitment to do better than Microsoft did at keeping the customers happy. The stakes are higher and the expectations of users are more discriminating.

Most importantly, unlike last time Apple has a product that, as it stands right now, is the best option for enterprise users. Microsoft never had to face that. Google needs to do better. Buyer beware on all these bargain tablets.

The article that prompted this post: $99 Ice Cream Sandwich Tablet Available, but Buyer Beware