[See the whole album](https://pictures.lytro.com/echeng/stories/9252) in my Lytro gallery.
[Sterling Zumbrunn](http://sterlingz.net/) and I are excited to launch [Noodletron](http://noodletron.com), a new technology website dedicated to discussions about technology, digital workflow, social media, and photography.
Our first big article is a [review of Apple's iPad 2](http://noodletron.com/2011/361/), a device that still has people lining up at Apple stores nearly three weeks after its release date. Sterling has tried more iOS apps than anyone else I know, and his thoughts about iPad and iOS are always worth reading.
We could use some help spreading the word about Noodletron and the iPad 2 review! If you like the review, please share it with your friends. :)
A post I wrote in April 2010 called [How to properly set up Gmail on your iPad](/journal/2010/04/05/how-to-properly-set-up-gmail-with-your-ipad) has gotten nearly 50,000 page views since it went live. Users of Gmail are used to its archive-instead-of-delete model, but by default, Apple devices prior to iOS 4 were deleting trashed messages when integrated with Gmail. iPads running the original OS and iPhones running iPhone OS 1.1.2 -> 3.x needed special instructions to set up Gmail accounts properly, which is detailed in the post I linked to above. Starting from iOS 4, setting up an iPhone or iPad using the big "Gmail" button archives mail by default instead of deleting it (but there is an option to go back to deleting mail). The trash icon even becomes a filing cabinet icon to signify archiving instead of trashing. I'm not sure what happens to drafts and sent mail in the new scheme.
Note that older versions of iPhone and iPad operating systems continue to delete trashed Gmail messages unless you set the account up as an "Other" mail account as detailed in [my other post](/journal/2010/04/05/how-to-properly-set-up-gmail-with-your-ipad).
I'm still using the old way to talk to Gmail on my iPad, and it continues to work well.
Here's [what Google says to do](http://mail.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=86614) as of today (January 8, 2011):
Other useful links:
- [Gmail help's official instructions for setting Gmail up in iOS 4](http://mail.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=77702) - [Gmail help's official instructions for setting Gmail up in iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch 3.0](http://mail.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=184972)
I've been struggling with this for some time. I really like that the iPad and iPhone both will talk to Gmail via Activesync (Exchange). This allows me to have Mail, Contacts, and Calendars pushed / synchronized to my device from Google. But the Mail implementation is flawed because you cannot set a different reply-to email address. Actually, you *can* set a reply-to address, but it reverts to your gmail address when you launch the Mail app. I want my incoming mail to come in via Gmail, but I want my outgoing mail to be from a different address (I don't use my gmail address as an explicit email address).
So here's what I've done:
1. Set up my devices to [talk to Google via ActiveSync](http://www.google.com/support/mobile/bin/answer.py?answer=138740&topic=14252). Check sync for Contacts and Calendar, but NOT for Mail.
2. Set up a second Gmail account as "Other" IMAP -- not using the default Gmail setup ([here's why](/journal/2010/04/05/how-to-properly-set-up-gmail-with-your-ipad/)).
3. Set up the IMAP account to use my normal SMTP server (the one my echeng.com address uses).
I tested this, and it works. I get my email through Gmail, but I can send through another email address.. although with this setup, I've lost push email.
You can't win 'em all.
I use [ActiveSync](http://www.google.com/support/mobile/bin/answer.py?answer=138740&topic=14252) to sync with my iPad and iPod Touch to Google for Mail, Contacts and Calendars. You can sync multiple Google calendars to your iPhone and iPad, but configuring it for iPad is currently broken because Google's sync configuration page doesn't recognize the iPad as a mobile browser. There is a solution, however, and that is to use Safari to fool the Google sync configuration page into thinking that you're an iPhone. From your computer (not your iPad), do the following:
1. Open Safari and view Preferences (**Safari->Preferences...**)
2. Go to the Advanced tab and check **Show Develop menu in menu bar**
3. In the menu bar, you'll now see a **Develop** option. Select **Develop->UserAgent->Mobile Safari 3.1.3 — iPhone**
Directions, with screenshots, are [available on Kevin Tofel's page](http://jkontherun.com/2010/04/04/ipad-calendar-sync-fix-google/).
**UPDATE**: This post is only valid for users using iPads and iPhones prior to iOS 4. Users running iOS 4 should [read this post instead](/journal/2011/01/08/setting-up-gmail-properly-on-ipad-and-iphone-ios-4/). If you're a Gmail user and have just taken delivery of a shiny new iPad, you should be sure to set your Gmail account up properly, just like you had to when you set up your iPhone. On the iPhone, the default Gmail setup did bad things because it violated Gmail conventions (actually deleting your mail instead of archiving it). I'm not sure if they've fixed the issue on the iPad, but the only way to be sure is to set it up manually.
Here's what to do:
1. Go to **Settings -> Mail, Contacts, Calendars** and tap **Add Account..**. under **Accounts**.
2. Select **Other**, and then, **Mail Account**. DO NOT select Gmail.
3. Use imap.gmail.com as incoming server and smtp.gmail.com as outgoing server. Put in your entire gmail address and password in both incoming and outgoing server settings.
4. Go back to iPad home and start up the Mail app. Once it connects and downloads mail for the first time, go back to **Settings -> Mail, Contacts, Calendars**. Select the new mail account you just created, scroll down, and tap **Advanced**.
5. Select **Drafts Mailbox** > **On the Server** > **Drafts**. Return to the **Advanced** view.
6. Select **Sent Mailbox** > **On the Server** > **Sent Mail**. Return to the **Advanced** view.
7. Select **Deleted Mailbox** > **On the Server** > **Deleted Messages**
8. Back all the way out and hit **Done**.
Set up this way, your iPad will now store also Drafts and Sent Mail in Gmail instead of only storing it locally. Here's the [GMail Blog entry](http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2009/01/tip-archive-mail-on-your-iphone.html) that details this for the iPhone. Deleted mails will go into the archives under the "Deleted Messages" label, but they will still be searcheable and will not automatically be deleted like messages in "Trash" are.
Alternatively, you can set up your iPhone or iPad to [talk to Google using ActiveSync](http://www.google.com/support/mobile/bin/answer.py?answer=138740&topic=14252) (Exchange). I've been doing this for awhile now, and it's been working perfectly.
The Apple iPad, announced today
I am a mobile device junkie, and have been long juggling Blackberry, iPhone, Droid, Kindle, Mifi and satellite phone in an attempt to find a solution that works best for me. I realize that I am not a typical user; I am always online, but I spend about half of each year out of the country in areas with poor connectivity. This instantly makes any device without an optimized, compressed wireless network nearly useless when I'm in the field (e.g. iPhone, Droid). Even if wireless networks were up to speed, the cost of international use would be outrageous. I took my iPhone to India a couple of years ago and chewed through my 50MB of allocated monthly data in a matter of days. A friend on a trip to Mexico last week went through his 50MB in 7 days -- and that was with light usage during the day, plus a WiFi connection at night. So I stick with my Blackberry Tour and its fixed-cost, unlimited international data plan. It is the best of both worlds: Verizon CDMA in San Francisco (the only working network here) and CDMA / GSM / EDGE / 3G when I'm out of the country. Unfortunately, the Tour has a slow processor, which means > 5 minute hard reset times and frequent multi-second lockups, but there are no other options and I remain productive while using it. The trusty little Tour downloads 200 messages in a minute on EDGE while I drift by small Indonesia villages. Meanwhile, the iPhone can barely finish negotiating an IMAP connection, and the Droid is hopeless because it's on CDMA.
In a protest against AT&T's crappy network, I sold my iPhone and switched to Droid on Verizon. I like the potential of Android, but I'm finding that I only use the Droid as a fancy video player and alarm clock when I'm on the road. Because I don't have time to watch TV or movies when I'm at home, most of my reading and video consumption happens from the comfort of tiny cabins on dive vessels. I read books on the Kindle because there is no Kindle app on the Droid and because I only need to charge the thing once a month. The Kindle app is the one thing I miss the most about the iPhone.
I think the iPad will change things, though. Its display is large enough for comfortable book reading and video viewing. It can be held easily while on the airplane and in situations where a notebook computer would be unwieldy. It will have more light-weight apps than one could ever hope for, is compatible with the iPhone apps I already own, and can beautifully display my photography and video portfolio.
I'm thinking that it will replace the iPhone / Android device in my lineup, as well as the Kindle. I'll finally have one phone, one notebook computer, and an "in-between" device: Blackberry, iPad and MacBook Pro (plus MiFi). Now if I could only coax my Blackberry into creating a WiFi cloud...