[aprssig] APRS for IPad

Aaron Wolfe aaron at aaronwolfe.com
Fri Jun 14 13:05:44 CDT 2013

On Fri, Jun 14, 2013 at 10:13 AM, Steve Dimse <steve at dimse.com> wrote:

> The iPhone and iPad are not intended as hacking toys, they are intended as user tools. If you want to play with phones and tablets Android is probably a better choice for you. Personally my phone is too important to my life to want anything but the most useful device, and for me that is iOS. YMMV.

This sentiment seems a bit dated.  I initially evaluated the Android
and IOS platforms a few years ago when purchasing a new phone.  At
that time, Android was clearly the platform of choice for the cutting
edge/experimenter types (and the interesting software) in several
hobbies I enjoy including ham radio.  This was the primary factor
behind choosing Android devices myself.

Today, however, it is much more likely to find an IOS option for even
very geeky/hackerish tasks.  I suspect the combination of Apple
relaxing some of it's restrictions on programmers and the widespread
availability of "free" (with contract) iPhones has helped a lot.

It's also true that a few years ago, the iPhone was arguably more user
friendly than Android and perhaps more appropriate for a critical
device your life might revolve around.  Today I think you will find
that the Android devices have caught up or surpassed the Apple options
in these areas.

Perhaps more important to ham operators, the recently introduced
Windows 8 Pro tablets far outshine both Android and iOS in their
ability to do "ham stuff" on a tablet.  My Surface Pro tablet runs
UI-View, APRSISCE/32, FLDigi, Ham Radio Deluxe, etc perfectly and
connects to my Signalink or directly to my TNCs and radios without
requiring any special hardware or hacks.

I have to wonder if recreating the functionality already present in
the large library of existing, excellent ham radio software is really
practical or useful.  If your tablet can't just run all the usual ham
radio applications, perhaps you have the wrong tool for the job?


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