How To use an Apple iPad 1 as a Digital Comic and eBook Reader

This 2020 blog post is about how to use an Apple iPad 1 as a digital comic and ebook reader.

A photo of the Apple iPad 1


I’m writing this blog post in 2020 and I’ve decided not to ‘jailbreak’ my iPad which runs iOS 5.1.1. Instead I I’m using the tablet as an eReader, which I’m sure some will think is a waste. Though it all depends what your needs are and for me currently, I like sitting on my sofa or a seat in my bay window and using the large colour display for occasionally reading.

I’ve also got games and other apps on the iPad, yet I still have 52.8GB of storage available, which is enough available storage for me.

Please note: I’m not suggesting you do anything illegal as there is plenty of free and legal content available on the internet.

Reading material

I’m not vouching for the content on the sites listed below, so please make sure you’re not downloading anything illegal.

How to move files to an Apple iPad 1

I wanted to get myself to a position where in the future I’m not relying on iTunes. So in August 2020 I installed ‘Remote File Manager Free’ version 3.0.3 by QuickApps Inc.

A photo of an application's name and version details.

Using this application I download/transfer content from either my NAS or another network shared drive. I do this via WiFi using my local network and the file manager enables me to quickly move files to my iPad 1 without using iTunes.

A photo of a NAS option in a file manager application

How I read the content on my Apple iPad 1 tablet

The ‘Remote File Manager Free’ application also can open various files. If you run into a problem with a file format, then hopefully you can use Calibre to convert the file to another file type, such as PDF.

I’ve been very impressed with the in-built PDF viewer of the file manager software, which allows you to easily zoom in, move back and forth between pages or skip many pages ahead. The viewer is an excellent comic reader for the Apple iPad 1.

Using the file manager software, I created folders that are category names and then I download directly to those categories/folders.

So the steps are:

  1. Convert a file if necessary.
  2. Transfer to a NAS (or place in a shared folder).
  3. Use Remote File Manager to download, open and view.

Final thoughts

I have some old games and other applications on the iPad and now I can transfer files to my iPad 1 without using iTunes. I’m not using the iPad that much, but it’s nice to have the option and still occasionally use the tablet.

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