Book Review: “iPad: Fully Loaded” by Alan Hess

Written by: Glyn Dewis

Published: January 19, 2011

Category: General

Ok this maybe an odd way to start but I’ll begin by summing up and say “if you have an iPad and want to get the most out of it then you NEED this book!”

Sure, as is always the case the book will cover some ground that you’re already aware of but I can guarantee you there will be plenty of gems in there that you never knew about; that alone make it a must have!

Let me explain…

So what exactly is an iPad? It’s just a big iPod right? I’m guessing that everyone who has or is thinking of getting an iPad has had similar questions asked of them and to be honest I kind of struggled with what to say. I mean my iPad does everything my iPhone does but just has a bigger screen right?

As a working photographer I was aware that more and more of my friends and colleagues were using iPads; all of them telling me it’s ‘the’ best way to show your portfolios to perspective clients but strange as it may seem, that just wasn’t enough for me. Now don’t misunderstand, I was always going to get one…it was just a matter of when. I kept thinking that I’ll wait until the 2nd Generation comes out after they (Apple) have ironed out any problems.

Anyway long story short my resistance was short lived and I finally got my hands on my own iPad early December 2010.

Having paid over £600 for this new piece of technology I was eager to get the most out of it and sure, App’ recommendations came flooding in from friends and colleagues. Sure it is as they said, mind blowingly good for showing portfolios but I have to admit I still found myself thinking “But now what?”; at least I did until I got hold of Alan Hess’ new book “iPad: Fully Loaded”

With over 284 pages packed full of tips and techniques in no time at all my iPad has taken on a new lease of life and I’m sure the reason for this is that the author, Alan Hess is himself a working Photographer and has taken hold of the iPad with both hands; using it ‘in the field’ day in, day out and really knows what it’s capable of.

The book itself is made up of a 18 Chapters covering everything you could want to help you get the most out of your iPad:

  • Chapter 1: Content
  • Chapter 2: iTunes
  • Chapter 3: The iTunes Store
  • Chapter 4: Electronic Reader
  • Chapter 5: Movies
  • Chapter 6: Television
  • Chapter 7: Comic Books
  • Chapter 8: News
  • Chapter 9: Music
  • Chapter 10: Photography
  • Chapter 11: E-mail
  • Chapter 12: The Web
  • Chapter 13: Calendars and Contacts
  • Chapter 14: Notes and Lists
  • Chapter 15: Word Processing
  • Chapter 16: Number Crunching
  • Chapter 17: Presentations
  • Chapter 18: Databases

Each month I buy quite a few books, in fact I’ll rephrase that, I buy a lot of books, covering such topics as photography, business, technology, self development and so on and going by the reviews they all seem to offer the ‘world’ and be ‘the’ best book on the subject, without which I’d struggle to move forward. Sadly though the majority of the time this just isn’t the case. I dread to think how much money I have spent over the past year on books that just haven’t lived up to their promises and are now just taking up space on my bookshelf . But I’m happy to report that this latest purchase “iPad: Fully Loaded” is definitely not one gathering dust.

Very rarely do I finish a book in one day let alone in one sitting but from the minute I picked this book up I simply couldn’t put it down. Each page turn reveals yet another gem of a tip to get the most out your iPad and what’s more the book definitely isn’t packed full of Apps that you ‘have to get’ and consequently end up spending a fortune. Sure there are Apps that Alan recommends because that’s a big part of what makes the iPad what it is but the ones recommended as if by some strange coincidence are the ones I would have wanted, and don’t cost the earth.

As a Photographer it was important to me that I knew how I could make use of my iPad from a business point of view and the Photography and Office Content sections have this fully covered. Alan covers everything you need to know about image preparation, importing and displaying your photos so that they look the best they possibly can. Notes, word processing, databases it’s all covered in a way that gets the necessary point across straight to the point without unnecessary technical jargon; in fact I’m writing this review on an App recommended in the book whilst sat drinking a coffee; such is the convenience of the iPad.

Being a film lover I’m got more than my fair share of DVD’s but since getting hold of the new Apple TV most of the films I buy or rent, I download from iTunes. That’s all well and good but what about all the DVD’s? Well Alan has this covered too as in the Movie section of the book he covers how to convert your DVD’s into a format that can then be viewed on your iPad and consequently Apple TV. Now this may sound like dodgy ground ripping DVD’s so let’s just set the record straight; iPad: Fully Loaded shows how to rip protected DVD’s but with the clear underlying message that these DVD’s are ones that you have purchased yourself and own so all your doing is making it more convenient to take your films with you on your travels. What we’re not talking about here is ripping DVD’s that you’ve rented, borrowed or downloaded from illegal shareware sites. This Movie Chapter alone would have been enough reason for me to get the book!

During the short time that I’ve owned an iPad I’m now really seeing what it’s capable of and am actually finding the only reason I’m using my desktop Mac and MacBook Pro is for editing work and tethering to my camera during a photo shoot, and that to me has been the biggest surprise of all. I honestly felt I should get an iPad because, well, everyone else is getting one. I never envisaged it would end up playing such a big part in my business and personal life but that I know is thanks to this book showing me that it’s so much more than an iPod with a large screen.

Highly Recommended!

iPad: Fully Loaded (Alan Hess)
ISBN: 978-0470878248
Currently priced at £9.09 with Amazon UK

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  1. Dave Clayton

    Just want to say a big thanks to Glyn for writing this review for on Monday, due to the style of my blog the images were small so its much nicer to see it all in full here. Great book aided by a top review. Thanks mate.

    • Glyn

      @Dave…A great book indeed. My iPad has come alive since I’ve had Alan’s book; love it!


  2. Keith Hammond

    good review Glyn. I may well get this book even though Mrs H is the iPad owner thanks to my generous birthday gift 🙂
    I’m sure when i have mastered my iMac and the tax returns are in i will “treat” myself to one.

    • Glyn

      @Keith…A really great book mate; I’d definitely recommend buying it. Lots of useful info and a fast, easy read…perfik! 🙂

  3. David Kelly

    Hi Glyn,

    A very insightful review of Alan’s book. It’ll be on my checklist when I look to purchase a second gen iPad sometime in the future.

    Reading your comments in your recent interview on Brandon Jacoby’s website, it seems like you’re a real bookworm (not in a nerdy sense of course ;-)). Maybe you could do a blog post on some of the other books you’ve read & recommend, at some point in the future?


    • Glyn

      @David…Yeah I’m a bit of a serial book buyer mate…can’t help myself 🙂
      Thanks for the idea re the blog post; that sounds like a top idea…cheers

    • Glyn

      @Keith…Not just yet mate, but shouldn’t think it will be long until it is 🙂

  4. Keith Hammond

    decided to order the old fashioned book 😉



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