Technological Shift

Last night, as I was preparing my slides for Sunday morning worship, a sudden though creeped into my head.

Why even bother bringing my MacBook over to church with me?

As I pondered this thought it occurred to me, there really is nothing I do at worship which requires a traditional clamshell laptop 1. My iPad Pro will happily run Keynote and send it to the projector, and I can use either my phone or old iPad Air for the remote 2. In fact, I could leave my iPad air, or even my iPhone, at the back of the sanctuary and run my slides from that device. But the iPad Pro’s smart keyboard cover gives a level of familiarity to the person who runs our lyrics and switching video inputs 3.

So, last night I tested out controlling my slides from my iPad Air 4 and decided to try the setup out on Sunday.

Other than my bag being significantly lighter, I didn’t notice much of a difference. Those differences I did notice were almost all beneficial. The footprint of the iPad pro is smaller than my MacBook, which made things fit better on the table. The lightning dongle is less finicky 5, which meant my video connection was more stable. My Keynote remote also connected faster than when the MacBook was running the presentation. The only downside to my experiment was the inability to print. I had meant to print out the call to worship for the person reading this morning, but it had slipped my mind. Though, as I ponder now I realize there are many more alternatives to printing than I recognized at the time — I could airdrop a PDF, create an ePub and email it, or even create images of the Scripture slides and send those to the reader. Printing is so out of style.

I did miss the massive 12.9 iPad Pro screen while I was preaching 6, so some day I may very well leave my phone set up in the back of the Sanctuary, and my iPad Pro as the remote. I mean, why not 7?


  1. Apologies to all my liturgical friends who are currently twitching at the thought of slides and screens in worship. I think in your world, but I do not live in it. 
  2. I kept my older iPad because it makes a good eBook reader. 
  3. Sadly, there remains no decent tool for lyrics projection in the App Store, or I might run worship from two tablets. This omission blows my mind. 
  4. Always test things out before hand. Always
  5. My Thunderbolt ports are very loose, it’s one of the only reasons why I’m envious of the new MacBooks with their USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 ports. 
  6. As well as split-screen multitasking to keep my Bible app open. 
  7. The lyrics guy is pretty cool, he can handle it. 

4 Comments

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  1. As a teacher, I can relate to a lot of this too. I was using my mac more recently for some work I had to use it for (and even then I was occasionally forced to use a windows pc!) but after that finished, I had this delightful thought one morning “I can just take my iPad”! The lightness and simplicity is such a joy even over a light MacBook Pro. Oh by the way, I finally bit the bullet and picked up an iPad Pro. I went for the 10.5″. I debated it for a long time but I wanted something I could use more on my classroom desks.

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