So here’s how the end of my music reader tablet story plays out. The thoughts about iPad versus Android tablets as a sheet music reader had been swirling in the back of my mind for a while. I postponed making a purchase to see if Android would catch up in the sheet music app department.
But then came the straw that broke the camel’s back. I went to a FedEx Office store to print some scores, since I’d long since ditched my home printer. I had the PDF file on my phone and used their HP ePrint app (Android version, iOS version) to send it to their printers. Normally this is a very handy little app, but that day, I tried printing a double-sided score, and the @#$!*% copier spewed out a bunch of single-sided copies of the score, no matter which settings I used. To add insult to injury, during my final attempt, the copier ate my credit card. The FedEx employee I flagged down was unable to retrieve my card, so he called a manager, who took forever to arrive. Finally the manager retrieved my card by pulling the plug on the copier. He said he could print my copies if I emailed him the file, but I said “No thanks” and went home and ordered an iPad that night. Enough was enough with the paper copies!
I ended up choosing the iPad for two main reasons: the superior music score reading apps (especially forScore) and the reliability, these ended up being the most important to me. As a musician, I need to work smoothly and efficiently in rehearsals and performances – and I need the tablet not to crash on me mid-performance!!! I am not stating this as a prescription for all musicians, though. Decide what’s important to you, and then make your own choice!
I still own and love my souped-up, tricked-out Android devices, though. If the price I pay for those customizations is that my device isn’t quite reliable enough to take onto the concert stage, then so be it. I do have another singer colleague who rehearses and performs with an Android tablet – I’ll have to check in with her sometime to see what her experience has been, and whether she likes it.
(P.S. I haven’t mentioned Windows tablets in these posts – I never really considered them. One reason is that they weren’t really established enough at the time I was shopping around. The other reason is bias or maybe just flat-out blind prejudice: I’m pretty sick of Windows and Microsoft these days. After having gone through a bunch of Windows computers at work and at home, I decided I couldn’t take it anymore.)
- How I chose between an iPad and an Android tablet as a music reader: Part 1
- How I chose between an iPad and an Android tablet as a music reader: Part 2