The biggest complaint I have always had about the iPad is that it is hard to blog. It is fabulous to watch movies, read a book (unless you are outside), tweet, surf, or play games. But blog….no. The issue with blogging is that you often need to insert a video, upload code, attach a photo, or add emphasis to your chosen word.
Unless you have a 3G enabled iPad, you are at the mercy of WiFi access (especially free access) to directly log into your blogging platform, like WordPress. Only if you have such access, can you log directly into your blogging platform via a browser. Even then, it is clunky since it’s not set up for use or viewing on portable electronic devices. So if you have internet access on your iPad, you can write, but you cannot blog. If you have access, you can blog, but with headaches and a lot of extra steps.
Thus, I kept lugging my ancient (and heavy) laptop to various events and conferences. Even without internet access, I love using MarsEdit on my Macbook. Yet, when faced with a recent trip to Blissdom, I really did not want to bring the laptop. Being pregnant, I just wasn’t up for lugging it around a massive hotel and conference center.
I had heard about various apps and gizmos that you could purchase for the iPad that would enable you to blog (like I am now) without access to the Internet. After researching two popular apps, Blog Press and Blogsy, I decided to purchase Blogsy ($4.99) in the iTunes store. In the early days, the reviews were mixed, but they had just made major changes to the Blogsy platform addressing the concerns, so I thought this was the time to give it a go.
The features are pretty robust considering it covers Blogger and WordPress (including self-hosted) remote publishing. You can edit in HTML, change font, add tags, and format text even without an Internet connection. You can also have multiple blog drafts that you can easily access and switch to and from. Once you have Internet connection, you can drag in a photo or insert a video and can immediately publish to your blog or send as a draft. There is even an email functionality, which I haven’t tried out yet, but everyone is excited about.
After using Blogsy for the past four days, I can say that is is worth the app price and saves time in having to cut and past from notes while still having to format later on. However, I do wish there was a way to insert pictures or video stored in iPhoto or iMovie on your iPad, even without an Internet connection, like you would be able to do on a laptop. Plus, other iPad designed apps for Hootsuite or Facebook don’t have the same robustness as a computer-based version, making the whole iPad social media experience slightly frustrating.
Thus, for a conference, I’d say it is still better to bring a laptop, but for a day trip or a quick overnight, I am definitely more willing to leave my laptop at home now that I have the Blogsy app. It is also great for those blogging post ‘ah-ha” moments when you want to start writing a quick post in the middle of the night. (It does happen!) So if you blog a lot on the go, the Blogsy app is worth the purchase price of $4.99. If you blog occasionally or have a lightweight laptop, I’d say wait for it to go on sale, then snatch it up. All in all, it is a good solution that many have not attempted to tackle – so three iPad cheers for that.
Note: You need to enable remote publishing to use the Blogsy (and BlogPress app.) If you are a WordPress user, go to your control panel, then Setting -> Writing -> Remote Publish -> and enable XML-RPC. There are also built-in ‘How To’ videos in the Blogsy app, which makes for quicker learning of the platform.
Disclaimer: I received no compensation for this post.
Thanks for this post! I was going to ask you what you used to blog on the iPad, now that I have my fancy new iPad 2.
Thanks Jodi! And hope you are having a blast with your new toy. 😉
I too opted not to bring the laptop to Blissdom and instead brought my iPad. I had an impluse purchase buy at the airport though — and bought a keyboard/cover to take with me. Glad I had the keyboard for note taking. Haven’t braved blogging from the iPad yet. Seems so intimidated as you stated above, but I’ll have to check out Blogsy. Thanks.
Thanks for the suggestion. I’ve used BlogPress for a year but ever since the system upgrade it continually crashes.