5 October 2011
Apple iPhone and iPad application review
I am often asked by customers when they see my iPad about my experience with this piece of technology and what applications I use and recommend.
My experience: My iPad has become a tool I find difficult to operate without – having a 3G sim card in the device provides access while out of the office and makes connection to work and internet based applications a breeze. I would also recommend, to those who are looking at purchasing a sim for the iPad, to get a 12 month pre-paid plan. All four of the major mobile carriers offer this plan which provides the best value for money and enables bursts of data usage when needed.
Some of the key ways I use my iPad include email access, note-taking in meetings, calendar, contacts, maps, satellite navigation, utilities, entertainment, social networking, remote access, shopping and much more.
My favourite apps:
Dropbox – This handy application allows you to access and open email files from your Dropbox account. Most of the other cloud-based file sharing applications have iPhone and iPad applications as well.
RDP Lite – Free application that enables remote access to a terminal server.
TaskTask HD – The native iPad does not have access or sync tasks from Microsoft Exchange Server. TaskTask HD offers a sync and offline access to your tasks with the ability to add, edit and delete.
Evernote – This application is handy for any existing Evernote users. Access all of your notes from the iPad and create new ones.
FileBrowser – Most of us like to access files remotely, but have security concerns with putting business data in the cloud on services like Dropbox or having separate copies in the cloud and on the company server. FileBrowser enables the iPad to access files located on the company server over a secure VPN. The access is based on username and password making it very secure and relatively straight forward to setup.
Whitepages – Whitepages is an application and can sometimes be handier than Google, especially if you are looking for a company’s phone number or address.
Keep reading to view my recommendations on applications for:
PDF Reader Pro – The best rated PDF application packed with features. Features include: form filling, GoogleDocs online editing, bookmarks, cropping, email out, sticky notes, mark-up ability with lines and text, dropbox sync, WiFi transfer and much more.
Navfee GPS – This app provides a fairly good satellite navigation system. It is not as complete as the expensive ones, but it is free!
Skype – Great for free overseas calls or chatting with friends.
Jumbo – A very large calculator.
Convert Units Free HD – Great utility to convert units like angle, area, data energy, force, length, mass, power, pressure, speed, temperature, time, and volume.
Currency – Deal in overseas currencies? This application will provide quick access to the current exchange rates.
iTorch4 – Turn your camera flash into a torch. Very handy at night.
MyPad – My preferred Facebook application. It does lack in a few areas, but seems the most stable and fast.
Friendly – This was my preferred Facebook application, but it had become unstable and slow. However, it still has some great features which MyPad does not have.
LinkedIn – Connect with your business colleagues with LinkedIn for iPad. It is hard to find the time to do social networking during the busy office day, so why not catch up while on public transport or eating breakfast.
Twitter – This application has multiple account ability so you can handle business and personal tweets from a single application.
Flipboard – A great way to read news articles, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. The content options include social, news, business, tech and science, video, cool curators, art and photos, living, entertainment, sports, local, travel and style. My favourites are Car and Driver, Men’s Health, Engadget, and of course the TechPath twitter feed!
ABC and 7NEWS – Good news applications.
SMH – The Sydney Morning Herald on the iPad.
Ebay – Easy to use application with push notifications for auction notices. You can even bid and pay all within the app.
Amazon – Ability to browse and purchase items from Amazon.
Carsales – Searching for a new car or wonder what your current car’s value is? The Carsales application works well and enables you to save a search that can be re-run in the future with a touch of the screen.
Personal / Entertainment
Plex – This one requires a server setup, but once going you can stream live video from your network at home to your iPad. You can also watch TV shows and movies from your iPad. It even works remotely, but will use lots of data in the process!
VLC and CineXPlayer – Both good applications to play media files (TV shows, videos, and movies) that the native iPad will not.
Event Cinema – Locate cinemas, browse session times, read and view video trailers, and book your ticket all from the application.
Urbanspoon – Don’t know where to eat out? This application will make the decision for you. Just choose a location, a cuisine, and/or price bracket and the application will do the rest. If you are feeling daring you can go completely random. Each restaurant result has plenty of useful information including the phone number, address, map, and user reviews with a % of people that like it.
iFitness HD – The application I don’t use enough! Filled with hundreds of exercises split into muscle groups and by exercise equipment with stretches, a My Workouts area, routines, logs, food tracker and online sync, this really is an all in one fitness application.
Shazam – Ever listened to a song on the radio and wondered who sings it? This application will record a short part of the song and then return the information including band, album, song name, lyrics, tour info, and a link to download from iTunes.
Aroundme – For finding places by category based on your GPS location. Looking for a park, hotel, servo, it is easy with aroundme.
Yellow Cabs – Now has an app which you can book a cab and it tracks the Cab to your door via Google Maps. You can also track it whilst on your journey.