Monday, April 23, 2012

Monday Mailbox: Mobile Image viewing

Dear Readers,

In my comparison of census image viewers, I invited readers to try viewing the images via a mobile device and then report back. “Slogger” did just that. Read on…

Dear Ancestry Insider,

Thank you for this. I had given up on trying to browse the census images on my iPad 3G. On the subject of load times, not using a stopwatch, but just counting, the load times were all much longer than your results, with Family Search the longest. But the load times don't mean much if when you have the image you can't do anything with it.

Ancestry's viewer is unusable on the iPad unless all you want is to save the image.

Archive and Family Search let you pinch to zoom and drag to move the zoomed image but the resolution is very poor when zoomed. They do let you tap and hold to save the image.

The one I hadn't tried was MyHeritage which is the only one of the four that seems designed for the iPad platform. An uncluttered, plain interface, pinch to zoom and drag to move the image, but high-res, even zoomed. Previous and next arrows and and a drop-down page number list for direct access to any page in the ED. In order to save the page you have to press a download icon which opens the image in a new, static page which you tap-and-hold to save.

I was rooting for one of the other sites, but this is a no-brainer. MyHeritage is the only one usable on the iPad.


Dear Slogger,

Thank you very much. I intend to get a mobile device real soon now. I just can’t find the time or money. Your review is much appreciated.

--The Insider


  1. Dear Slogger and Ancestry Insider,
    I thought it was just my set-up. I was gratified to read this morning:
    "Ancestry's viewer is unusable on the iPad ..." Very true and very frustrating. Any changes ahead? Thanks for the forum.

  2. From experience, on an iPad 2 and on an original iPad upgraded to iOS 5, the old limitations with Ancestry images disappear. One can look at document images without having to save them. As an added perk, you can pinch-zoom and touch-drag the image around.


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