Posts Tagged

Productivity

Whether you’re a freelance designer, or the head of a multi-national corporation, it’s possible to get a great deal of work done on your iPad! It may not be your first choice, but for those occasions when taking your iMac on the train seems like a pain, having your iPad prepared will seem like an inspired move.

Dive right in to get a rundown of some of the very best business apps available! You know you need this…

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I’ve spoken before about how the iPad can be used to increase productivity, and today I want to go a step beyond that and outline two different ways that the iPad can become essential to anyone’s workflow.

One way is fairly common, and the other might be something that you haven’t heard of before. Hopefully you’ll learn something either way and will find the iPad becoming less (or more) of a toy. Let’s get cracking.

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It’s here, this is the big one. The definitive roundup of those most crucial of apps; task management apps. Most of us, me included, wouldn’t get anything done without them – they help us manage our daily lives, and provide the key to massively increased productivity.

Who doesn’t want to be more productive?

If you haven’t settled on “the one” yet, or have even the smallest sliver of doubt about your current system, then have no fear – this is what you’ve been waiting for! I’ll take a brief look at the different styles of task management available, and what types of people they suit. Each app will then get its moment in the limelight, and we’ll look at what separates each from the competition.

Screenshots and icons will abound, take a deep breath, here goes!

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As we all know, the office has left the cubicle and migrated into our digital devices, including our iPhone and iPads. College students, business people, and even casual users often have the need to edit Microsoft Office docs from the convenience and touch screen beauty of their iPad.

Office² HD for iPad provides a host of features and syncing options to keep you in the work cycle. It handles Word, Excel, and PowerPoint documents with utmost grace. While I, personally, wouldn’t use this app as the primary way to create docs it’s still a very useful app to have – it’s better to look at it as a companion piece of software for your desktop Office programs. So lets check out why I find Office² HD a useful companion to your computer.

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Apple seem to make almost everything possible, and now word processing doesn’t have to be a mundane task that is confined simply to the office. The iWork suite, which has already found its home on Macs all around the world, has finally been optimised for the iPad.

Many people favour iWork over other packages such as Microsoft Office for its simplicity, wide range of features and, most importantly, its price (it is around half the price of Microsoft Office). Today I’m going to have an in-depth look at the iPad stalwart that is Pages.

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The App Store is currently on a fantastic trajectory, it’s becoming ever more a wonderfully self sustaining and profitable marketplace for entrepreneurial developers. One of the best things about the App Store in its current form is how remarkably easy it is for passionate developers to make a mark.

If you have a truly great idea, there’s a good chance you can succeed!

App Cooker is aiming to be the single, all encompassing, tool for designing and mocking up apps – helping you to plan and assess the viability of your idea. Now comes the real question; is it any good?

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The newly refreshed Macbook Air is the best laptop Apple has ever devised for students. Even the lowest end model, with its paltry (by current standards) 2GB of RAM, would be fine for most students I know. Add the Air’s ridiculously fast SSD into the mix, and you’ve got a seriously slick machine.

But wait, what other Apple product is impossibly thin, has flash-based storage, and is super fast? The iPad, of course.

In many ways, the iPad seems unstoppable: its stable of professional, beautifully designed apps grows by the day, its iOS operating system gets more efficient and productive with every update, and its hardware is way ahead of competitors.

At half the price of the MacBook Air, the iPad suddenly seems like a more than capable option for a cash-strapped student. But could it really serve as a student’s only computer?

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The iPad is a great platform for consuming various kinds of media, from books and films, to news and games. But working on the iPad, and for me that mostly means writing, has been something less than a stellar experience.

Part of the reason is that I find the electronic keyboard is a clumsy input device for any serious writer used to a full-sized keyboard; with its readily available punctuation and cursor-movement keys. It can also be a multistep process to get work into and out of the iPad. Uploading and downloading files with iTunes File Sharing works fine, but it’s hardly seamless, and the various ways different apps implement alternative syncing protocols can present its own headaches. Any writing app for the iPad is either saddled with these platform-based limitations, or must find ways to work around them.

The App Store’s Productivity category boasts a large number of writing apps, ranging in complexity from programs like Pages to much simpler plain-text writing and note-taking apps. These apps have different combinations of features, and most writers will find one that suits their particular writing needs. For me, though, I’ve yet to find an iPad writing app that makes me want to use the iPad for sustained writing sessions, and certainly not as an alternative to writing on my MacBook Pro.

It seemed that for the foreseeable future writing on the iPad would remain a chore, because it just wasn’t possible to overcome its platform and system software limitations to create a truly useful writing app. But ever hopeful and with curiosity piqued, I took the writing app plunge again when I learned about the newly-released version of WriteRoom from Hog Bay Software. I am happy to report that writing on the iPad has just gotten a lot better.

Read on to find out how WriteRoom manages to overcome the iPad’s operating quirks in clever and thoughtful ways that make it much more attractive as a serious writer’s tool.

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Winners Announced

Thanks to everyone who took part in the giveaway this week, and special thanks to the kind people at Firetask! I’m excited to let you know that the winners have now been chosen. Congratulations are in order to:

Niam
Nate
Rick

Well done to the lucky winners, and we’ll be in touch soon. Sorry to those who missed out, be sure to check back for more great competitions!

Old Competition Post

Only yesterday we reviewed Firetask here on iPad.AppStorm, I’m excited to announce that today we can offer three promo codes to three fortunate readers. Firetask is a serious attempt at combining the classic approach to task management with the ideas of David Allen, the pioneer behind GTD.

Reviewing Firetask we had this to say:

Firetask is a powerful task management app that implements GTD concepts beautifully and is soon to feature cloud synchronisation. All at a stunning price!

It’s a task management app designed specifically for the iPad that sports a clean interface and a veritable multitude of functionality, including the the GTD trademark ‘Someday’ list.

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When it comes to taking notes, there are several different options for your iPad, including some big names such as OmniOutliner and Evernote. But what if there was a note taking app that could also record messages, while providing a clean interface that was easy to navigate?

Well that’s the plan here with Notability, an app that acts like a notebook for your iPad, complete with custom images, recordings and everything else you could hope for. But is it all that or does it try to pack too much into one app? Let’s find out after the break.

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