A reader had a question about a term you hear frequently when talking about PCs and Tablets. “I am 83 with dementia and still do know what download means. it may be because I only have an I Pad and have never used anything else. Can you download on an I. Pad ???”

“Download” is one of those terms that a lot of folks don’t quite understand, but they’re often too embarrassed to say so. But it’s all pretty simple. In the simplest terms, it just means that you’re saving a file from online to your computer, tablet, or phone.


The file could be a song, a computer program, a photo, a document.  If you’re saving it from online to your device, you are downloading. (It’s coming down to your device from the cloud.)  What that means is that the original file is saved on another computer somewhere else and it is transmitted via the internet to your device.  (By device, I mean computer, iPad, tablet, or phone.)


And yes, you can most definitely download to an iPad. Here are some examples of things that are downloaded.

Programs or Apps.  Any time you purchase a program from your phone or tablet’s app store or a computer program and it is saved from online to your computer, tablet, or phone, you are downloading a program.  (When you put it on your PC from a disc, this is usually referred to as installing instead of downloading.)

Email.  If your messages come to a program or app on your computer or iPad, you are downloading copies of each of those messages.

Photos:  If you save a picture from online or someone sends you a picture, you’re downloading those images to your device.

Music:  If you buy or save any songs to your PC, you’ve downloaded that song.

eBooks: These are a very popular download.  When you buy one, you download it to your reading device.

If it’s online file and you save it to a computer, tablet, iPad, phone, or even something like an Xbox or Playstation. It’s a download.

I hope that clears it up a bit.

~ Cynthia