iOS and the iPad – The Stylish Operating System With The Best Apps


iOS Operating System on the iPad

iPad Operating System

What are the pros and cons of the iOS operating system for the iPad and how should you choose if it’s the best tablet PC operating system for you?

  • iOS is Apple’s iPad and iPhone operating system. As it’s only used for these devices, it’s optimised specifically for these and adapts to the larger screen tablet format. This means you get a highly polished product that runs very smoothly.
  • Conversely, if you want iOS on a tablet, your only choice is an iPad so there’s little flexibility to try other devices.
  • iOS is highly user friendly and intuitive to operate. Taps and swipes will get you round the operating system. It’s slick and fun to use at the same time.
  • iOS differs from operating systems you might be familiar with on a desktop PC or laptop as it’s built to restrict you to only load apps and media via Apple iTunes. This means you can’t load apps or games unless Apple have pre-approved them so you give up control of what you can put on your tablet.
  • The benefits are that Apple checks all apps and games before they’re in the iTunes App Store so malicious or poor quality apps aren’t accepted. Consequently, you don’t need virus or firewall software on an iPad. Virus or firewall software can slow a PCs performance.
  • The restrictions continue with the rest of the device and iOS doesn’t support a USB port to load files directly on to an iPad.
  • The Adobe Flash Web technology is not supported. Flash is used on the Web for some video, games and animation content. The reasons for this is that Flash can drain battery life, can hinder performance and has some history of leading to poorly developed apps. The Flash experience on other operating systems can be a little hit-or-miss. If being able to access Flash content is important to you then you need to be prepared that iOS will just display a blank box when it encounters it on the Web.
  • If you’ve already got an iPhone and have all your music, apps, video, podcasts and eBooks stored in the iTunes eco-system, then an iPad running  iOS is the obvious choice.
  • The biggest reason to go for iOS is the hundreds of thousands of apps available for it and also the huge range of apps and games specifically designed for iOS on an iPad.
  • Installation via the iTunes app store either on your PC, Mac or directly on your iPad is straight forward and quick to do.
  • iOS also has a massive range of games, eBook readers, magazine-style readers, video watching/editing, music playing/making apps and much more.

At a glance…

iOS on the iPad Pros

  • A well finished and slick user-friendly interface
  • Best range of apps and games optimised for a tablet
  • Fantastic media consumption apps and capability

iOS on the iPad Cons

  • Closed approach to what you can do with your tablet is restrictive
  • No Adobe Flash support
  • Limited tablet hardware options – only the iPad

Check out the What Tablet PC comparison table to see which tablets are running each operating system. We’ve also got lots of reviews to help you choose the best tablet for you.


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  1. I have been considering an Ipad for sometime now, but have a few questions. Is the lack of Flash support a problem for web viewing or is this less of a problem than it would seem?

    • Hi Mark, thanks for the comment and sorry for the delay in getting back to you. I have an iPad at home that we use a lot, the lack of Flash has never bothered me, apart from on the BBC website where all the video uses Flash. Now that there is an iPad BBC iPlayer app though that is less of an issue. I don’t do much Flash gaming though so it depends what you plan to use it for. General surfing is occasionally annoying if you come across a video that won’t play but most sites seem to be moving over to formats of video that the iPad supports so again, it’s becoming less of an issue. Hope this helps, Ted

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