So we’ve all heard (well almost all of us) about iPad, and now the new iPad2 that is coming out on March 11 (not quite in time for the AAR Winter Conference). And even though Apple came out with the original iPad in April of 2010, with first weekend sales hitting 700,000, less than a year later, they’ve already made improvements and expecting everyone to upgrade.

Why, because their Apple! But some other reasons are that the iPad2 is:

1)      33% thinner and up to 15% lighter

2)      It’s twice as fast with a Dual-core A5 chip running it.

3)      2 cameras. How can you beat this!

But let’s get back to reality with what we have- the original iPad and how we can use it (without the 2 cameras) to help us at the AAR Winter Conference.

1)      Take notes!  This is the coolest thing, whether you type them with a Bluetooth keyboard, the on screen keyboard or by hand writing them! Some cools apps you look at for handwriting are Adobe Ideas (free), Penultimate ($1.99), Note Take HD ($4.99) You can also take notes in the Notes app that comes with your iPad and email them to whomever you wish.

2)      Blog! Let other people know what you are experiencing. There are many places to post your blog and you can do pretty easily from your iPad. Of course check and respond to other blogs to see what other people are experiencing at the conference- in real time!

3)      Email! Not during classes of course, but check and email with multiple accounts. Business, friends and family emails- nobody will know that you’re in Prescott enjoying the pines.

4)      Games! OK, OK… you probably don’t have time for games during the conference, but IF you ever do, DoodleJump (supposedly the most addicting game in the world) (99 cents), Hungry Shark 1 (free- one of my favorites), Glow Draw (free), Angry Birds (free or the full version for $4.99), Pocket God (99 cents), PaperToss (free) or one of the other 65,000 apps made for the iPad. Of course checkers, tic-tac-toe, chess and the other traditional games are there (for free).

5)      Read! iBooks that came with your iPad will allow you to download tons of free books and for a fee, read thousands of other titles.

6)      Business! OK, let’s get back to what we do….Real Estate. Download zipForm® mobile ($9.99/year) and Sign-N-Send ($4.99) and type up those purchase contracts, sign and send off! Who says you need a scanner, printer, fax machine or paper???

7)      Dropbox! Cloud computing is here, which means you can upload files online, and simply download and use on your iPad (or anywhere else). (free up to 2GB)

8)      Online Faxing! Send or receive faxes through your email. (metrofax- $12.95/month)

At 1.33 lbs, or add another .02 lbs for the 3G model, it’s not going to add much weight to your luggage. You truly can do so much during the conference, or any other time with your very cool iPad!