I most recently got an iPad and since I have a oldish, heavy laptop, I'd much rather only carry around my iPad instead of my laptop (I'm a student). I do need to create and compile TeX files though and I don't want to rely on having a working internet connection.

I have googled a bit and also stumbled upon questions on this TeX.SE site. The two most commonly applications being brought up were TexPad and TeX Writer. However, most reviews seem to be rather old (2-3 years) and a lot can change in that time.

I work with varying types of documents, small and large ones, some with pictures and some without any, and sometimes I also need the TikZ package (for example). I think the latter might be a restriction, but am not sure. Other than that, I don't think that I do anything extraordinary when working with TeXnicCenter on my laptop.

Q1: Are there any other applications I might want to consider?

Q2: What are the current main differences between TexPad and TeX Writer?

  • 2
    The usual way to request updates on things is to place a bounty on questions :) Mar 15, 2015 at 21:32
  • 1
    @egreg: tex.stackexchange.com/questions/103798/…, tex.stackexchange.com/questions/83114/…, tex.stackexchange.com/questions/83066/… are three questions I've come across, the second one being the one with the most complete answer (over two years old). I've found some other rather short discussions on forums, but they seemed outdated too.
    – Huy
    Mar 15, 2015 at 21:46
  • 6
    Note that, unless things have changed, nothing GPL can go through Apple's App Store.... But I'm curious: why not use one of the online services available now?
    – cfr
    Mar 15, 2015 at 22:50
  • 2
    This is not an answer to the current state of latex on ipad, but have you considered using an online product/site like overleaf.com (formerly writelatex.com) or sharelatex.com? Both sites have very decent latex access, are free for minimal accounts, and seem very useable for files that are not too big.
    – zun
    Mar 16, 2015 at 5:51
  • 1
    @zun: I have tried sites such as writelatex in the past but was not quite happy with it. They seemed laggy and slow and didn't work very well for larger files (which of course could have been due to slower tablets than the current iPad Air). Also, as I mentioned in my question, I don't want to rely on having an internet connection because there are workplaces at my uni where the internet connection disconnects every now and then, where it is very slow or where it doesn't work at all and with my laptop it is currently no problem for me to work there.
    – Huy
    Mar 16, 2015 at 7:32

1 Answer 1


Disclaimer: I use Texpad.


  • UTF-8 XeLaTeX Support See TexPad and fontspec package
  • Smart Keyboard: allows much quicker cursor navigation and selection.
  • Useful autocompletion
  • Not easy to select first or second line of a file with cursor (keeps jumping around)
  • File Overview (supports master files and other files + Organizer (albeit confusing)
  • Offer most packages but without clear listing of what is inside each "Bundle"

Tex Writer

  • No UTF-8 XeLaTeX
  • WebDav

Both support local and cloud compiling.

What would be cool?

  • Interface for other apps like iTransmit for SSH
  • Samba
  • Version Control System support (like Subversion and Git)
  • ability to view aux and other files
  • ability to edit document in another app and save into Texpad.
  • If I have .tex file in my laptop (windows), could I bring this file to my ipad and continue to edit it? Thanks Apr 9, 2017 at 4:39
  • 1
    @sleevechen Yes. You may need to typeset using the "cloud" if you use fontspec (Texpad). Apr 9, 2017 at 5:47

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