Discussing Apple’s recent iPad marketing on his website Tedium, Ernie Smith discusses what’s wrong with Apple’s marketing to creatives in 2024, particularly the marketing of the iPad to creatives. He and I had had a conversation on Mastodon the day before and he mentions me in the context of this point:

I am not convinced that Apple is doing a great job targeting users like him with their marketing—there was a scene in Tuesday’s keynote where an iPad was being used to manage a video shoot that struck me as particularly off-key—but I will not deny that they’re out there and they exist. I think the real problem is that Apple has not done a particularly good job of closing the gap between iPad users, many of whom did not grow up with traditional computing experiences, and Mac users, who did and have largely been left out of the touchscreen revolution for what feel like purely business reasons.

I think he’s absolutely right. Two of the most notable iPad ads in recent years are “What’s a Computer” from 2017 and this week’s “Crush” that got so many people riled up. The 2017 ad shows a teen on the move working with the iPad as she moves about town. From location to location, she’s shown typing with an attached Keyboard Folio, taking photos and then dragging them into a document with her finger, FaceTiming with a friend, sharing and otherwise being both casual and effortlessly productive. At the end her mom sees her laying on her stomach in the back yard and asks, “What are you doing on your computer?” The girl looks up from the iPad long enough to ask “What’s a computer?” before looking back down to resume typing. What I loved about that ad is the way in which it shows how an iPad can easily fit into life and how it is truly a multi-use, multi-modal computer.

Both ads are memorable but neither one targets creative professionals. The first is for a general to young audience using any iPad, likely for school or for fun though that ad does do a great job of briefly demonstrating various ways apps on an iPad can be used. But neither one demonstrates how an iPad Pro might benefit a professional graphic designer like myself who needs to edit images, create vector graphics and then assemble assets into a newsletter or report. That’s my use case and I use Affinity Publisher for most of that work. It’s exactly the kind of professional level software that pundits have been insisting does not exist on the iPad. It does exist.

I think this is why I become frustrated when pundit after pundit repeats the story that the iPad is over-powered and when others pile on insisting that it’s great for content consumption but nothing else. It’s a denial of my experience and a demonstration of ignorance of what is quite easily accomplished with the iPad.

I would love for Apple to make an effort to better demonstrate in a straight-forward, clear way what is possible with the iPad. No clever crushing of anything, just a series of ads or videos that speak to adults highlighting apps for creative professionals. Nothing cute. Nothing funny. Just a well made demonstration of apps that take advantage of the power of an iPad Pro.

  • Adobe Lightroom, Photoshop and Illustrator
  • Affinity Publisher, Designer, Photo
  • Procreate and Procreate Dreams
  • LumaFusion
  • DaVinci Resolve
  • Final Cut Pro
  • Logic Pro

And why stop there? Do a series covering multitasking showing different use cases between apps perhaps highlighting an iPad being used with a 2nd monitor. Or delve into other app categories highlighting pro-level apps that, while not useful to everyone, would demonstrate to a general audience, that there are apps out there for professions many people may not even know exists.

Or maybe even do a series highlighting how iPads are used in an office setting. Microsoft Word has 2 million ratings, 4.7 star average. Outlook has 6.6 million ratings, 4.8 star average.Microsoft Teams has 3.2 million ratings, 4.8 stars. Obviously people are using these apps and rating them well.

Lastly, add a series on the features of iPadOS to help people discover and learn. Each year Apple does an excellent job on highlighting new features on their website. It’s not enough. Do more with video to highlight key features in key apps. Videos to highlight both simple and advanced features in iPadOS.

Take full advantage of YouTube, TikTok, etc. In this regard Apple has done a terrible job not just failing to speak to creative professionals but users in general.

A streenshot of Apple's TikTok account showing 5 videos

Look at this screenshot of their TikTok as of this moment. 5 videos and it has me wondering if this is really their TikTok account or a fake account. 5 videos and three of them look to be directed at teens.

This video highlighting the iPad Pro and Procreate is in the right direction but look at Apple’s iPad playlist on YouTube. As of May 11, 2025 it has 4 videos. Let me say that again. Apple’s YouTube playlist for iPad has FOUR videos and one of those is for the “all-new iPad Mini” from two years ago.


Apple, make an effort to demonstrate how an iPad can be a useful computer.

If I dig around in other playlists, particularly the Today at Apple list I do see a few useful iPad videos. Videos like this on using Keynote on iPad, are closer to what’s needed. It’s a how-to but it’s better than most on the channel. Here’s another, How to Make Your Alter Ego on iPad in Procreate. That said, those longer, how-to videos are not really what I’m suggesting. They should be a part of it, but less how-to and more demonstration of what the apps, combined with an M2 or M4 iPad can do.

Just a casual look at Apple’s YouTube channel shows their priority is the iPhone. For a company of Apple’s size it seems a bit bizarre that they can’t find the talent and time to better produce other videos for other products.