If you follow the well done blog by Janome Canada
, the answer would appear to be yes. However the method outlined in that post involves connecting the iPad to a Windows computer and using that to extract the designs. The fact that a computer is involved pretty much cancels the advantage of using an iPad. There are two factors that make this a poor substitute:
- iOS apps are "sandboxed", meaning that each app has their own directory for storing files. No other apps are allowed access. Some apps offer a "share" button that allows files to be sent to other apps, or even other computers via email, Air Drop (Mac), Dropbox, and other means. AcuEdit does not have such a button. In iOS 11 a "Files" app was added that allowed files to be stored in a way that multiple apps could use them. Janome does not support this in AcuEdit.
- When you access the designs in AcuEdit through iTunes there are no icons or images to help you determine which is which. If you let AcuEdit assign file names automatically, you get meaningless file names constructed from the date and time the design was created. It's easier to just copy all the files and delete what you didn't want.
In September iOS will split into two operating systems: iOS 13 for iPhone and iPod Touch, and iPadOS for iPads. At that time it will be possible to physically plug in a USB drive to an iPad for file transfer. This will use the "Files" app mentioned above, and some programming will be required for existing apps to use the feature. Janome has traditionally updated software only to support new models. Software for older models is ignored once a replacement is out. A good example of this is the lack of a 64-bit USB driver for the original Customizer software. It effectively killed the ability to connect older machine to new computers via USB cable.
Janome's AcuDesign app can be used with older, non-WiFi models. However it's not free, it's still pretty buggy, and you are again back to using a computer to accomplish the iPad to USB transfer. For just managing designs take a look at StitchBuddy HD
. It also does not have USB transfer, but that's because of Apple's current software. The author is a member of this list and will probably be doing an update to support an iPad-connected USB drive (Stimmt?)
Janome will be releasing a new top-line machine next month at Janome Institute. It will probably have WiFi, which they've made more or less standard. It will be interesting to see if they update their apps to support it, or possibly come out with new apps. For 90% of people who sew an iPad is enough computer, especially as they've gotten more and more powerful. Short of digitizing, just about everything can be done on an iPad. Windows computers, being commodity items, will always be cheaper than iPads, but the poor build quality of the cheap ones, the embedded trial software, and the ever-present malware makes them a short-term product that needs to be replaced often. There's also the issue of finding space in the sewing room to put the computer.