I just finished a 7 day jury trial and used Trial Pad for the iPad for the first time. In prior trials I have used Sanction and believe it is a tremendous product. However, I was curious what it would be like to be wireless and able to roam the courtroom with iPad in hand and able to access all my exhibits at the touch of a finger, instead of being bound to a laptop at a table or having a trial operator manage exhibits.
The experiment was a success. The ability to fairly simply load all your exhibits into Trial Pad and have them at your fingertips is a tremendous advantage in court. Furthermore, you can load separate key exhibits into your Key Docs tab to have in a focused area for exhibits that are or become central to the issues being tried. If you annotate an exhibit using highlights or red marker for example, you can save that specific demonstrative exhibit into your Key Docs for later use with other witnesses or in closing argument.
The photograph was taken during my opening statement of a medical malpractice case on October 30, 2012. Using Apple’s patented pinch and zoom feature you can take, for example, a medical record and pinch and zoom into one tiny area of the page. For example, on an anesthesia record, there is a lot of data being tracked, only one small part of it may be relevant, so you can pinch and zoom on that part, annotate, and save just that section of the page to your Key Docs. The system can be nice to load in your verdict form or a jury instruction to present to the jury, and you can use a stylus to fill out the verdict form for the jury and put your requested damages numbers right on the screen.
The technical set up is not too bad. It will require a wi fi router, an Apple TV, a projector or monitor that supports HDMI, and of course an iPad with Trial Pad installed (other products like Air Sketch or Adobe Reader could be used also but they do not have the robust features of Trial Pad). My recommendation is to buy an Apple Airport wi fi router, create a closed end wi fi network you can take with you and do not connect it to the internet. Leave this wi fi router just for your remote presentations such as depositions, mediation, arbitration or trial. Configure your Apple TV to connect to the new wi fi network you created with your Airport Express. Connect your iPad to your Apple TV and use Air Play to present, opening Trial Pad and clicking Present. What is nice about Trial Pad also is it defaults to a blank present screen with a subtle Trial Pad logo so you now you are ready to go but do not have to have an exhibit clip appearing for the jury or whoever you are presenting to.
A trial lawyer could purchase all of this equipment for just a little over $1,000 and the it does not take a tremendous amount of time or knowledge to set up and configure the system. Last Trial Pad also allows the use of playing video clips and a whiteboard. If any fellow trial lawyers would need any assistance or advice on setting this up, please do not hesitate to contact our office for more information. Keep trying!