iPad Apps for Lawyers: TrialPad 2.0 Reviewed

TrialPad 2.0 has just been released, and I will begin by saying that they have indeed read the reviews, listened to the feedback, and have implemented the features necessary to make TrialPad the new Gold Standard of iPad Apps for Trial Presentation.

I always attempt to write my reviews from a professional and objective perspective, and am not afraid to point out weaknesses, as well as strengths of a product. I’m not one to offer a cheesy sales pitch to make someone feel good about their product (the same way I look at a case during trial – I’m not there to make you believe you’re convincing the jury if you’re not). If you want that, you can find it elsewhere. Here’s the link to my first review of TrialPad, “Apples to Apples: Two iPad Apps for Trial Presentation,” which helps make my point. This article continues to dominate the all-time highest traffic rating of any article on my blog.

Here’s an actual presentation screen-grab, taken with two exhibits, and two call-outs.

I’ll include the list of update features from the iTunes site below, but will point out that a few of most important game changers are:

1. Ability to display two documents (or document + video) side-by-side
2. Multiple zoom callouts
3. Handles multi-page tiff images
4. Basic video editing

Now, would I actually use TrialPad in a trial? Only if there were some compelling reason to do so. Sorry fanboys -- but it’s still not a laptop, and it’s still not TrialDirector. The trials I work on are generally larger matters, which would introduce unnecessary risks and challenges, all at the expense of looking cool. Those attorneys who actually use it in trial are generally working alone on smaller cases, which would be fine. My services wouldn’t fit within that budget anyway.

However, I have used TrialPad in presentations (non-trial), and will continue to do so, just because it is cool, and since my presentations generally focus around legal technology – well, you get the picture. Now, if someone contacts me to support a trial with the iPad, I’d love to do it.

TrialPad's competitors are Exhibit A and Evidence, and can each be had at around 10% of the cost of the $89.99 price of TrialPad. The “game-changers” noted above now make it an accurate statement to say, “You get what you pay for.”

One issue I will note is that if you wish to highlight and zoom on a section of an exhibit, you’ll need to highlight it first. You cannot do anything to the zoomed section. Also, if you intend on showing a lot of documents in a side-by-side manner, you may want to create and save some of these ahead of time, as there seemed to be a bit of instability when working with multiple zooms from both exhibits. In trial, a delay of even a few extra seconds can seem like an hour.

From iTunes:

You have asked for all these features, and we have delivered!

CALLOUT TOOL – Pull out multiple sections of a page (with annotations!), even multiple sections from different pages in the same document, even multiple sections from different documents when in split screen (see below)!

SPLIT SCREEN – Show two separate pages side-by-side, even callout and compare different parts of different documents with their highlighting or other annotations!

CASES VIEW – Using intuitive case folders you can now view by Icon, Thumbnails, and List. Sort alphabetically (A-Z, Z-A) or by date. Also search for a case by name.

VIDEO – Import, edit, make clips, and take snapshots!

NEW FILE TYPES – Besides the gold standard Adobe Acrobat PDF format, now you can now import JPG, GIF, PNG, TIF, Multi-Page TIF, and TXT. [Also imports DOC, DOCX, XLS, XLSX, PPT, PPTX, Keynote, Pages, and Numbers, but PLEASE NOTE, for these files our best practices recommendation is to convert these files to Adobe Acrobat to maintain the formatting and look of the original document.]

IMPORT FROM PHOTOS APP – Import photos and web page screen shots.

DROPBOX – Download/upload your files from/to Dropbox to collaborate with the trial team.

EXPORT – Print or email pages or entire documents, with or without annotations.

DOCUMENT NAVIGATION – To complement the existing scroll bar and flick function, new Page Up and Page Down buttons to quickly flip through multi-page documents.

DOCUMENT MANAGEMENT – Now you can easily move documents between cases.

FILE SORT OPTIONS – Sort documents within a case by name or file type, as well as the ability to reorder documents manually.

LASER TOOL – Show a red, blue, or green laser to guide your audience through a document. It even works across documents when in split screen mode.

WHITEBOARD – Draw or write on the new Whiteboard tool and save as a Hot Doc.

NEW HIGHLIGHTER COLORS – Our crisp, blended highlighter now comes in yellow, green, blue, and pink, without ghosting the background document.

NEW PEN COLORS AND WIDTHS – Now choose from red, blue, green, and black in three pen stroke widths, with ability to write.

STICKY TOOLS – Double-tap to lock the Callout, Highlight, Pen, Redact, or Laser tools to keep them active (just like shift lock on the keyboard).

REDACT TOOL – Redact in white or black.

All of this with the same sleek and intuitive user interface!


If you’re willing to pay ten times the money for an iPad App versus its competitors, TrialPad is an excellent choice. If you’d rather spend less money, and are willing to have a few less features, I’d recommend Exhibit A, or possibly Evidence. If you have a larger or complex trial, you may want to focus more on trying your case, rather than trying your patience, dealing with the technology yourself. Call me.

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