10 apps that rocked iPad users' world in 2010
When the iPad celebrates its first birthday next month, it should raise a glass to Apple's App Store, which has provided users with an array of innovative applications. Late last week, Apple released a list of the 10 most popular iPad applications, with productivity apps making up the bulk. Here they are:
Apple re-jiggered its word processing program for the iPad to optimize it for a large touchscreen. The program lets you create documents from a number of templates and send them to anyone using Pages '09, MS Word or PDF formats.
Reading and editing PDF files is typically neither colorful nor fun. But GoodReader is aiming to change that (well, the colorful part at least) with this reader that lets you edit PDFs using bright colors and graphics. Among other things, you can create yellow "sticky notes" on the PDF for annotations, draw circles or rectangles around key passages and highlight entire paragraphs with bright colors.
Numbers is Apple's basic spreadsheet application reformatted for iPad. Like other spreadsheet programs, Numbers lets you sort data and present it in several kinds of graph formats. The program's files are also compatible with MS Excel.
Angry Birds HD
Here's a popular game that lets you control an angry red bird that's trying to get its eggs back from a thieving gang of green pigs. And yes, while this sounds like a metaphor for communism, it's also an addictive and popular game that lets you launch birds from a giant slingshot and fire them kamikaze-style into the pigs' bases. Wait, why do birds need a slingshot to fly? Oh well, the game is fun regardless.
Keynote rounds out Apple's major trio of in-house productivity apps as the company's answer to PowerPoint. This is the type of app that seems best suited for the iPad since it involves a lot of drag-and-drop formatting and it has relatively little typing compared with the word processing and spreadsheet programs.
Based on the hit musical-comedy series, this karaoke app lets you sing along to your favorite tunes on the show. The program anticipates that you won't be very talented, which is why it includes features such as pitch correction and additional harmonies. And if you're feeling really confident, you can even record your karaoke performance and post a video of it on Facebook or Twitter.
Wolfram Alpha LLC
The goal of WolframAlpha is to provide you with an insane amount of up-to-date information on just about everything. What encompasses everything? Well for starters, let's go with trigonometry, current weather conditions, historical weather conditions, up-to-date economic statistics, real-time astronomy charts, Olympic trivia… OK, you get the point. WolframAlpha wants to help you become the annoying guy at parties who always fact checks people with his tablet.
Developer: OOO Gramprom
An arcade classic that's been redone for large touchscreens, Pinball HD seems like a perfect game for the iPad: It's large, colorful and doesn't involve any intricate controls. The game includes several pinball templates to choose from so you won't be playing on the same board over and over again.
Friendly Plus for Facebook
Friendly Plus is a platform that optimizes Facebook for the iPad and gives you access to full-screen photos, chat and more.
And finally here's an educational astronomy app that can teach you about stars, planets and constellations with a gorgeous graphics display. The iPhone version of the program was named one of Apple's "Best Apps of 2009" and it's a safe bet that the iPad's larger graphics display will make it look even better.
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