Five iPad apps to gloat about owning immediately

Apr 3, 2010
Tech

If you’re one of the select few who greeted your UPS delivery person on Saturday or somehow got through the lines at the Apple store, you know by now that the iPad justifies all the money, time and hype surrounding it.  Sure, you can wait a few weeks to purchase the 3G model that will […]

If you’re one of the select few who greeted your UPS delivery person on Saturday or somehow got through the lines at the Apple store, you know by now that the iPad justifies all the money, time and hype surrounding it. 

Sure, you can wait a few weeks to purchase the 3G model that will allow you to download apps and connect to the web with your iPad anyplace you go. But, once you actually have the magical device in your hands, you really won’t want to go anywhere anyway. 

So, when you had back to the office this week, you’ll obviously want to download in advance apps that showcase your iPad in the best light. 

Here are five iPad apps worth downloading immediately. 

1. 

The $2.99 iPad app, developed by Smule (which brings us I Am T-Pain and other great iPhone apps) replicates the action of playing a real piano simply be tapping or dragging fingers on the screen. Play solo, or form a duet with other wannabe maestros in the same room as you, or, through multi-player functionality, anywhere around the globe. The app’s “Songbook” feature will also help you get started. 

3. World Atlas HD

World Atlas HDWhile digital maps and navigational tools are a virtual commodity for anyone with web access through their computers or smart phones, the marriage of National Geographic and Apple’s iPad has created an application unlike anything you have ever seen or experienced before. 

The elegance of this $1.99 iPad app captures that same feeling one gets opening up a classic edition of National Geographic. World Atlas HD is divided into three viewing modes: Executive (think about classic round globe featured in the CEO’s corner office), Political, and Satellite. The iPads multi-touch functionality allows you to squeeze into closeups of virtually any location on the planet. Drop down libraries with information about every country give more depth behind the app’s pretty face. 

A great educational tool for children and adults alike. This app may actually you out of iPad mania and have you start exploring the world soon. 

4. ABC Player

ABC PlayerBe warned, this free app that features full-length episodes crashed the first two times I tried operating it. Once I got it to work (a process that overall took about 40 seconds), however, ABC Player proved to be the most seamless way to tap into watching television on a mobile (or Internet-based) device I have ever experienced. Open the app, tap into a colorful promo of an ABC show, choose from a list of recent episodes, and… presto, you’re up and running.

Of course, you have to sit through a full-length ad before the show comes on, a reasonable trade-off for a free application. The clarity and performance of the video streams were excellent after the first two loading mulligans. 

The app’s navigation is intuitive and right to the point. Program selections are divided between “Most Popular”, “Most Recent”, and Staff Picks. The app also includes a schedule of upcoming ABC programs, a master directory of all shows you can view from the application, and a customized viewing history that lets you immediately return to a program you previously selected. 

Lets hope CBS, NBC and Fox (or some combination of all of them via Hulu) follows ABC’s lead and builds an app that lets us watch shows for free this easily. 

5. Marvel Comics

Marvel Comics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In what is likely the most significant shot-in-the-arm to the comic book medium in more than a generation, publisher-heavyweight Marvel Entertainment released this free app that is a storefront for scores of iPad configured titles including Spider-Man, New Avengers and Fantastic Four. 

While the majority of the titles are available for a $1.99 in-app download cost, there is a free section for select titles that will motivate you to buy more. Downloading the books within the app is a snap. The iPad’s touch screen and brilliant clarity now only make the classics look better than ever, but also should inspire a new generation of comic authors to advance the art form in this brand new, spectacular medium. 

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Brad Spirrison

Brad Spirrison is the managing editor of appoLearning and Appolicious Inc. In this capacity, he has sampled and evaluated thousands of iOS and Android applications. He also holds an M.A. in Education and Media Ecology from New York University.

Spirrison worked in concert with appoLearning Expert and Instructional Technology Specialist Leslie Morris while curating and evaluating educational applications.

A longtime media and technology commentator and executive, Spirrison is also a regular contributor to ABC News, The Huffington Post, TechCrunch, Bloomberg West and The Christopher Gabriel Program.

Spirrison is married and lives with his wife and young son in Chicago. As his son was born just weeks before the debut of the iPad, Spirrison takes his work home with him and regularly samples and enjoys a variety of educational applications for young children.

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