tech tips for writers / writers resources

Tech Tips for Writers #104: Need a File on Your iPad? Here’s an Easy Way

Tech Tips for Writers is an (almost) weekly post on overcoming Tech Dread. I’ll cover issues that friends, both real-time and virtual, have shared. Feel free to post a comment about a question you have. I’ll cover it in a future Tip.

Q: I have a video on my computer I want to use on my iPad. How do I do that?

A: There are ways to do that–email it to your iPad, open through DropBox–but those have issues:

  • emailing requires extra steps and time you may not have, and many email accounts limit you to <10MB. What if a video file is larger?
  • DropBox has limited space (at least mine does). And like email, you must put materials in DropBox to access (I know–Duh, but that requires planning. What if your inquiry-driven writer’s group popped onto this topic on the fly?)

If you’re like me, anything to make worker faster, easier, less steps is a good thing.

I use Carbonite to make data available to my iPad. Yes, Carbonite charges a fee because its primary service is as a back-up of your computer. I decided the cost was worth it to have an offsite automatic redundancy of the material that makes my life tick forward. I’ve used flash drives and CD’s and Windows built-in back-up, but nothing beats an autonomic tool. One of the pluses is that you can access any data that is backed up from your computer’s C drive from anywhere as long as you have the User name and Password. That means when I’m at school and need a file I saved at home, it’s now available.

To access these same files from the iPad, all you do is install the Carbonite app, open it, and access the materials in your backed up drives. Everything opens–movies, Word Files, everything. Of course, you can’t edit them, but you can view and copy-paste.

My only experience is with Carbonite. Anyone have another back-up service that does that?


Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy. She is the author/editor of over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, adjunct professor of technology in education, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer,  a columnist for TeachHUB, Editorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing Teachers, monthly contributor to Today’s Author and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. You can find her book at her publisher’s website, Structured Learning.

25 thoughts on “Tech Tips for Writers #104: Need a File on Your iPad? Here’s an Easy Way

    • As a learning society, we are inching toward everything residing in the cloud. Until they, the iPad is limited. I too don’t use mine nearly as much as I use my computer or even my Chromebook.


  1. I’ve heard good things about Carbonite. I use Dropbox. I pay to get more storage and I have my videos on that. In fact, I recently switched to a new laptop. I need to get those videos on the new one. So much work involved in switching computers. Sigh.

    Liked by 1 person

    • They’re a bit different. Carbonie–you pay for the automatic back-up. It seemlessly backs up every data file on your hard drive without you doing a thing (other than signing up for the service). Dropbox is more about storage.

      Can’t you run the videos off of Dropbox?


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