Technology and Ministry – Ipad vs. Kindle

As promised, here is a brief comparison of the Kindle vs. the Ipad for the purposes of ministry.

Kindle-dx Advantages of the Kindle over the Ipad:

  • Price. Even the most upscale Kindle (DX) is cheaper than the cheapest IPad. Money makes a difference to ministers. Even if one opts out of the 3G model (I did), the upscale Ipad is $200 more. You can get the base model for 40 bucks more than the Kindle DX.
  • 3G comes standard with no fee. For 3G on the Ipad, add a $100 minimum, plus a 3G contract cost.
  • Books are cheaper with Amazon by about 2-3 bucks a book. However, Amazon may be forced to bring their prices up eventually, and the Kindle app on the Ipad is awesome. So, you can buy your books with Amazon on either device. The IBookstore reader looks cool but lacks the functionality of the Kindle reader.
  • Kindle for PC and Kindle for PC Online. More ways for you access your highlighting and notes. If you have a quote you want to put in your sermon notes, you can cut and paste it into your notes. Can't do that on the Ipad…at least yet.
  • Text to Speech. Turns most books into an audiobook. This is good for while you're getting dressed, in the bath tub, in the car, or whatever. One of the coolest things here is that if you email your sermon to your Kindle, you can hear it read out loud before you preach it—allowing you to be the listener, not the speaker. This can be really huge for those of you who manuscript. The Ipad doesn't have a text-to-speech feature.
  • Screen is virtually no glare. If your auditorium has bright lights, this may matter a lot.
  • Thinner and more lightweight…however the Ipad is definitely comparable.

Apple-ipad-ad-no-flashAdvantages of the Ipad over the Kindle:

  • Color. Nuff said.
  • More attractive interface.
  • Touch screen allows you to highlight easier, turn the page in book-style format with a swipe of the finger.
  • Better keyboard. When typed on in landscape mode, the touch-screen keyboard is almost the same dimensions as a normal laptop keyboard. There is a keyboard dock available for the Ipad, if you don't like the keyboard. The Kindle keyboard is hardly useable…but then again…you rarely need it because the Kindle is essentially just a reader.
  • You can do more than read. You can type, word process, work on spreadsheets surf the web, check your calendar, etc. Thus, the Ipad is a productivity machine in addition to being an e-reader. It can be your day-planner, library, sermon notes, etc. in one small device.
  • Apps…the ways to use the Ipad will continue to grow as fast as the app library.
  • Video/music play. The speakers on the Ipad are pretty good. If not, some earbuds will do the trick. You can watch movies, or, listen to your favorite music during sermon prep. If you video podcast like NCCC does, I can download the podcast through ITunes and watch it back on the device on a larger screen. You can view spreadsheets and Powerpoint presentations as well through apps, so you can do everything through one device.

Both the Kindle (especially the DX) and the Ipad are quality devices that are worth the price of purchase. On the whole, I believe the Ipad is a better device for life as a whole, and the Kindle is slightly better simply for reading and preaching. Some out there may have the Nook or a Sony Reader. Perhaps you all can let us know how those work.

I'm really interested to know from those of you who use readers, what other tricks or drawbacks to you have to share?

 

Dr. Tim Spivey is Lead Planter of New Vintage Church in San Diego, California. He is the author of numerous articles and one book, "Jesus: The Powerful Servant." A sought after speaker for events, Tim also serves as Adjunct Professor of Religion at Pepperdine University. Tim serves as a church consultant, and his writings are featured on ChurchLeaders.com, Church Executive magazine, Faith Village, Sermon Central, and Giving Rocket.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

Share Your Thoughts

2 thoughts on “Technology and Ministry – Ipad vs. Kindle

  1. Great post. I recently sold my Kindle 2 to buy an ipad specifically for preaching. The Kindle worked great for reading books, but terrible for delivering sermons. Turning pages is too slow and cumbersome. The ipad, though, allows you to keep the sermon in so many different formats (pdf; word document; powerpoint/keynote; etc) that it solves the problem very easily.
    For Rex, I hear you. As a pastor, money is tight – so the fact that I’ve already had to sell one device to buy another is troublesome. But, the ipad seems to have enough features to last me a good while. My guess is that Apple will come out with a new version in another year or two, with things like a camera or a usb port. But, I don’t really see the need for those extras, and will hopefully be quite content with my decision to buy now. Also, it’s quite possible that our laptops will become the new ‘desktop’ and the tablets will become the new ‘laptop’. If you only use one, stay with a laptop. But if you have two machines – one for productivity and one for mobile computing, I’d suggest going with the laptop/ipad combo.
    Chris

  2. I like the idea of being able to hear my sermons preached to me first, since I am one of those who manuscript. However, I also still like the idea of an old-fashioned book in my hands for which I can write in, take notes on, and write down questions I have for the author.
    Here is my question, given the fact that PC’s not only have a short life span but also are quickly outdated in terms of technology, software, and operating systems (i.e., I am typing on a PC that is less than two years old but operates on VISTA), if I invest in a Kindle or Ipad then how soon will my investment be outdated? In other words, how often will I need to replace my investment with a newer one in order for my Ipad/Kindle to operate efficiently with the latest technology developments?
    Grace and peace,
    Rex