Monday, January 16, 2012

Sean’s Top 10 Recommended iOS apps for Productivity

Before the slew of Windows 8 tablets come out, most folks have an iPad or iPad 2. If you go online looking for popular apps, you’ll either get a list of games or a list of apps without a description of what they do.. I’ve spend a lot of time trying to figure out the best way to use my iPad, and not just for games.. Below is my list of non-game apps and why I like them.
  1. iTap RDPiTAP RDP allows me to get to Windows clients via RDP.  Sure there are free ones like iRDesktop, but this was the only one that did TSGateway so I can get to clients behind a proxy from outside the network.  I also think that with the different mouse modes and special keys that come up on this app, this is the most functional. 
    1. You could compare this to CloudOn, which allows you to get to your MS Office apps, which uses DropBox to get to your documents.  Pretty good solution, if you trust DropBox.
    2. There is also OnLive, which let’s you RDP to a hosted version of Windows 7, but using a web browser to upload and download files seems hoaky to me.  Plus with it being free, how are they making money? what are they selling?
  2. mWOLMocha WOL is a free app in the iTunes store.  It isn’t anything other than a Wake-On-LAN client, I picked it over the other ones because it’s free.  The end.  My laptops have an aggressive sleep schedule to keep power consumption down.  My Home Server is the always on PC.  Unfortunately this won’t wake up my clients if I’m out of my home.
  3. Buzz PlayerBuzz Player is a Media player and media copier.  I like it because all of that media that I have sitting on my Home Server, this app can stream it to me when I’m in my home.  That’s 2TB of videos and music that I can just use anywhere on my LAN.
  4. Lync Mobile Lync Mobile is Microsoft’s Lync IM client, on the iPad.  Given that these days I don’t take my laptop to the couch for after hours surfing, this client allows me to stay in touch with co-workers that are world-wide.  I can answer a quick question from Shanghai.
  5. OneNote – Microsoft OneNote is another essential Microsoft app.  If you use OneNote on your PC, and I do extensively, then this gives you access to any notes stored on your SkyDrive.  This has revolutionized how I manage my soccer teams.  I simply create the notes on my PC, and then update them on the phone or iPad
  6. Grocery IQGrocery IQ is really only useful if you also have the app on your phone.  My wife and I sit down with the iPad and make our grocery list and what we’re going to eat for the week.  Then, because we have the same Grocery IQ account, when we hit the grocery store, the list is just in our pocket on our phone.
  7. FeedlerFeedler is a less popular RSS reader that syncs with Google Reader. As far as I can tell, Reeder is the most popular app for this, and certainly is more beautiful looking; but it’s missing a key feature: mark older than X days read.  I get to my RSS feeds as often as possible, and for the most part, I read them in entirty, although trying to catch up on Mashable, or Engadget, after being away for a week is next to impossible, but I do want to read a few days worth.  Hence Feedler is my preference over Reeder for RSS reading
  8. Kindle – The Kindle app is handy because it means on business trips, I only need the one device, and long plane waits etc, I can just continue on my book.
  9. SkypeSkype I am only looking forward to.  Sure I can use it on my iPad 1 for text chatting, but without a camera it kind of sucks.  I sure do love it on my phone though, and can’t wait for this communication powerhouse to become fully operational once I get an updated iPad 3!
  10. BlogPressBlogPress is my mobile blogging app.  Blogging from the PC is my preferred method, and I actually use the combination of the first two apps in this list to do 90% of my blogging, but if I’m travelling, it’s a secondary way for me to get the data out to the web, without having to wait.
Those are my top 10 favorite, non-game, iPad applications to boost your productivity and enjoyment of the iPad aside from a $700+ gaming tablet.

Update: I just recently discovered Office 2 HD for the iPad, which I had to add to this list.  It's a little spendy at $8, but allows you to do more with Word, Excel and PowerPoint than you can do with the Apple apps (like Pages).  For example, I'm able to comment on documents and send them back via email now.  They support a variety of cloud services, like SkyDrive and DropBox or even just Box (and more)!


Suzanne said...

Okay, so that grocery store app, BEST, MOST PRACTICAL ever! Thanks so much, it has really made our lives easier. No more forgotten milk!

Anonymous said...

Have found issues trying to use iTap or any RD Gateway connection to get to PC's behind WHS 2011 (using the default * cert).

Sean Daniel said...

I don't think it's cert related, I think it's due to the lack of domain structure. I could be wrong though.

Unknown said...

While the addicting and crazy apps are fun, I've been hunting around for apps that are a little more useful. Five great ones that can save you a lot of money are....

PJ said...

Hey seems to be great apps…would definitely check it out….. Further adding to this list I would like to suggest Future Scheduler and Location Alerts Productivity apps (Paid).