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It’s All About The Apps

May 3, 2010
By Dave Hecei, dhecei@post-journal.com

The iPad is here and it's huge. Well, not literally. The iPad is actually a small half-inch thick tablet that weighs only a pound and a half. The total number is not known, but estimates put the WiFi only iPad sales close to a million. This last Friday, April 30th, the 3G cellular capable iPad went on sale. If you are lucky enough to have a new iPad, it's time to look for some Apps.

The App Store is part of Apple iTunes Store, an online store where you can purchase music, movies, TV shows, and Apps (software that runs on the iPhone, iPod Touch, and or iPad). You can also rent movies to watch on your computer or iPhone/Touch/iPad. It is also where you can find and subscribe to Podcasts, audio or video programming, most of which are free.

With the recent release of the 3G network iPad, Apple has finished the US launch. Unfortunately, Apple underestimated the popularity of the iPad and has pushed new orders ahead a few weeks, and has also pushed the International release ahead. Those overseas will have to wait a bit longer now.

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The iPad is unique in that it can be many different things to different people. It is a great E-book reader books, magazines, newspapers, and comic books. It is a great media player. This can be movies, TV shows, You Tube videos, music, etc. It is also an amazing Internet device. With E-mail, Chat, and Apple's Safari web browser. All this is nice, but it's the Apps that really make the iPad great. The right Apps can transform the iPad into a gaming system, remote control, social networking portal, the sky's the limit.

If you are lucky and already have an iPad, or will be getting a 3G network model this coming week, then it's time to start thinking about some Apps. Many of the Apps that work on the iPhone and iPad Touch will run on the iPad. They may display in a small window, that's because of the lower resolution of the iPhone, but many can be zoomed in to fill the screen. For most Apps this will look just fine, but sometimes the graphics may look a bit jaggy or blocky. Thankfully many of these original Apps for the iPhone are starting to be rewritten for the iPad's bigger screen. And they look amazing.

Just like software for the Mac, iPad Apps run the gamut with categories like: Games, Productivity, Utilities, Internet, Education, and Media. I thought I would compile a list of Apps for the iPad. These include some that interested me and ones that are the most popular. There are quite a few that are free, but most are priced from 99 cents on up. Most Apps are under $10, only a few specialty Apps are more expensive. Also, make sure you look to see if it is an iPad version. Many iPhone Apps have been redone for the iPad and have HD in the name. Also, some Apps have a free version and a paid version. The free ones will likely have Lite in the name. Try this version first. If it doesn't do enough, you can always get the paid version later on.

FREE APPS:

iBook this is Apple's E-book reader, which is also how you access the iBook store to purchase titles. Surprisingly it does not come preloaded on the iPad.

Netflix this App allows you to watch any of the Instant Streaming content available to Netflix subscribers. If you have a Netflix account, you cannot watch them in the iPad version of Safari, you need this App.

ABC Player Again, you cannot watch most streaming video on the iPad since it does not have Adobe Flash. This App allows you to watch Dancing with the Stars, and other ABC programming, on your iPad.

The Weather Channel Max access to all kinds of weather reports and data.

Yahoo! Entertainment has great TV listings, news, etc.

Pandora Radio a great way to listen to free music. Just type in an artist you like and you will get lots of songs by them, plus a bunch of other artists that you should also love.

AIM AOL Instant Messenger for the iPad. 'Nough said.

Kindle for iPad allows access to the Amazon Kindle Bookstore. At this time, the Kindle store does have more title than the Apple iBook store.

Evernote the ultimate note taking App. So much more than just notes, Evernote can help you remember anything photos, memos, voice recordings, bookmarks, etc.

Pricegrabber allows you to shop for practically anything comparing prices from all over the Internet. Since the iPad has no camera, unlike the iPhone, it doesn't have the nifty UPC scanner capability

GoSkyWatch Planetarium Very cool looking planetarium program. This is useful for astronomers or for students.

Epicurious a nice App full of recipes and an integrated shopping list.

We Rule a cute 'Sim' type game with some elements of Farmville.

Godfinger another 'Sim' type game where you rule over minions. Great graphics and sound.

Sudoku Tablet anyone addicted to Sudoku puzzles, here's your App.

Mahjong Artifacts: Chapter 2 HD a long name, but a great version of mahjong tiles.

10 Pin Shuffle HD iPad version of shuffleboard bowling.

Warchess HD remember Battle Chess, or better yet the chess game R2 and Chewbacca was playing in the original Star Wars. Here's a fun and entertaining version of chess, very well animated.

For more lists of great paid Apps, along with other Mac news, tips, and such, check out my blog at www.post-journal.com/page/blogs.list

 
 

 

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