Sunday, March 3, 2013

Ten iPad Apps I Am Glad I Have - Redux

Well, my iPad 2 is now (as of this writing) about two years old. After having it for about five months, I created a blog entry about the ten apps that I was glad I had. Now that I have had the device for a couple years, I wanted to create another one for comparison - especially since there are new apps out there all the time.

First - let me say that I use the iPad daily. Literally. Daily. The same cannot be said, however, about all of the apps that I have installed. The iPad I am using is the 64 GB WiFi only version. I have 1,862 songs, 24 videos, and 211 apps and just under 20 GB of free space available.

For this post, I am choosing ten apps that I use daily - or almost daily as well as some that while I don't use them daily - I am really glad to have for the times when they have come in real handy. So, without further ado, here they are - in no particular order.

1. You Version Bible App - FREE

What can I say? This is an awesome app to have for those who read the Bible. I prefer this over a Bible purchased through the Kindle Store. This has a verse of the day, several devotionals, and the ability to take notes and highlight passages. Even more impressive is the ability to have multiple translations at your fingertips.

2. Keeper - Password and Data Vault - FREE

With so many different websites and accounts to manage, this app is a life saver at times. Of course, I recommend having a different password for each of your accounts. This app makes it much easier to keep track of them. I try my best to remember them all but if I forget, I know I can always go back to this app and look it up. (As long as I remember the password to get into the app) That is right. The app itself is password protected so that if someone were to grab my iPad - they would still be locked out of the app with all my passwords. Way better than keeping a Post-it Note on the monitor...  :) There is a $9.99 option for backup protection.

3. UPAD - FREE for Lite or $4.99 for Full

This is my "go to" app for taking notes at meetings or just jotting down something I don't want to forget. I particularly enjoy the magnified space for writing so that your finger or stylus does not create writing for the 'paper' that is way too big.

The full version - which I am using - will allow you to have more than five "pads" and allow you to export as a PDF. These were two features that I use often enough to warrant the five bucks for the full version.

Here is a video on it.

4. Clock Pro HD - FREE or $2.99

I went ahead and made the purchase for the full version. This app has replaced my alarm clock. I really enjoy having multiple alarm clock settings that you just don't get with a traditional alarm clock. For three bucks you are able to get rid of the ads which, at the time I purchased it, were blocking my button to go full screen with the digital display. The brightness, backgrounds, and colors are adjustable which is nice. Of course, with the release of iOS 6 - you now have a native clock app but it still is not anywhere near the nightstand alarm clock replacement that this one is.

Icons for numbers 1 thru 6

5. PCalc Lite - FREE

Here is a free app without ads! Since iPad doesn't come with a calculator app, this one is my choice. There are some paid options for some functions that are specific to certain job related needs but the free one does perfectly for what I need.

6. TuneIn Radio - FREE or $4.99

If I want to listen to the radio, I don't bother with that old box in the house anymore - it only picks up local stations. With the TuneIn Radio app I can pick the genre I want and have my choice of stations from literally around the world. I can set my favorites and access radio stations that I would never otherwise be able to listen to.

For $4.99 you can get the full version which will remove the ads and I believe you can also do some recordings. In this app, I don't think the ads are too obnoxious but I also don't sit and watch the display as I listen to the radio with it so they go completely unnoticed, really. The free version does perfectly fine for me.

7. Ignition - $129.99 or LogMeIn - FREE

OK - before you have sticker shock - Ignition used to cost $30. I actually was lucky enough to purchase it for $15 on sale over Labor day weekend back in 2011 before the free one was introduced and the cost of Ignition went up. The nice part is that I am able to get the benefit of a pro license on all my computers even though they are running the free version of LogMeIn on them. With the free version you can access the free stuff but with Ignition you get all the pro stuff. The free app offers an in-app purchase (IAP) to grant access to the pro stuff on a free client machine but is limited to a single machine. I believe the cost is $39.99 per year. Also if you have a pro client license, the free app will allow access to the pro stuff but a pro license is $70 per year. In the end, for multiple computers, Ignition for a one-time purchase of $129.99 for the free stuff on all computers you access is really not a bad deal at all.

At any rate - I really love this app as it allows me to access my home and work computers remotely and swap files or control it for help to family and friends as well.

Icon for number 7 - Ignition

8. Dropbox - FREE

I use a number of online storage solutions including SugarSync, SkyDrive, Cubby, Google Drive, Box.Net, and Dropbox. Of all of them, I am currently using Dropbox the most and find it to be a very easy way to get files on and off of the iPad. When iPad first came out, there was a lot of grumbling about the lack of an SD card reader or USB port for a flash drive. With Dropbox, this is a non-issue. Really.

9. Kindle - FREE

I like books just like the next guy and I love that I can have my books on the iPad.

Icons for numbers 8 and 9

10. Explain Everything - $2.99

I enjoy creating video tutorials for various tasks. This app, in my opinion, is the best one out there for accomplishing this. You can use multiple pictures, all sorts of annotations, and export directly to your photo gallery. There is no need to have another account with an online service in order to share them - just create and save then upload directly to YouTube or FTP to your own server if you want. Way more flexibility and well worth the three dollars. Here is a video about it.

Icon for number 10 - Explain Everything

Please tell me about some of your favorite apps. Why do you like them? What makes them valuable to you?

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