Thinking of getting an iPad for your classroom? Great idea! Thinking of purchasing the $29.00 iPad Dock Connector to VGA Adapter to display your iPad on your projector to share its contents with your students? Guess again.

I am extremely disappointed in the iPAd VGA Adapter. I bought it thinking I could share whatever is on my iPad with my students.  After all, watching the Apple Keynotes on the iPad, you see they have an adapter that projects everything on the iPad onto the large screen.  Anyone familiar with their laptop VGA projector connectors knows that they project all contents of the laptop through a projector.  So, one would assume the iPad would be able to do the same thing. Well, that’s not the case.  In fact, you are EXTREMELY limited in what will actually project onto the screen.

As a wired educator I wanted to use the iPad Dock Connector to VGA Adapter to project:

  • The internet via Safari for my Students. Nope, it doesn’t do that.
  • Use iBooks and share a book with my students. Nope, it doesn’t do that.
  • Display a worksheet I created in Pages with my students. Nope, it doesn’t do that.
  • Use Maps to show students aerial views of planet Earth. Nope, it doesn’t do that.
  • Display a great educational app with my students. Nope, it doesn’t do that.
  • Share an email I recently received from famed author, AVI. Nope, it doesn’t do that.
  • Share Photos with my students. Well, only ‘sort of’. You can show a photo slideshow presentation, but not individual photos. Just a slideshow.
  • Share my seating chart in Keynote and move the students around on the screen. Well, only ‘sort of’. It only projects in PLAY mode. Does not show layout screens.
  • Share my Lesson Plans via Pages. Nope, it doesn’t do that.
  • Show whatever I want on my iPad to my students. Nope, it doesn’t do that.
  • Share your iTunes playlist. Nope, it doesn’t do that.

So, what can the iPAd Dock Connector to VGA Adapter actually project to your students and staff?

Not much. It only works in landscape mode.

  • You can show videos in PLAY mode only from websites. (As long as they aren’t in flash.)
  • You can play videos in iTunes.
  • You can project a Keynote presentation in PLAY mode only. Keynote on the iPad has a couple of good features. I like tapping the screen to advance. That seems natural. Swiping the screen to go back.  Both natural and easy features. Touching and holding your finger to the screen produces a simulated laser pointer on the projected image wherever you are touching.  This is a very nice feature!

And sadly, that is it.  Nothing else.

Even Apple’s store rating is only giving it two out of five stars, and I think that is generous.

WiredEducator Grade: D-

Question: Can the iPad VGA Adapter be remedied with an software upgrade or is it a hardware issue?

About these ads