10 Apps to Make Your iPad More Productive

The iPad has simplified our lives in many ways.

And it has changed the way we work and get things done.

I use my iPad daily at work and in my personal endeavors.

Often, I am asked for iPad app recommendations.

So, today I thought I would highlight 10 of my favorite iPad apps.

However, while I have focused on productivity, this list concentrates on apps other than traditional todo lists, etc.

10 Apps to Make Your iPad More Productive

Here are 10 Apps that should be on your iPad… and how they will save you time.

1 – Pocket

Pocket, (formerly called Read It Later), is where I store all the articles and web posts that I want to read.

It saves me time because it keeps me from endlessly surfing the web. When I find an article that I want to read, I simply use the bookmarklet to save it to Pocket. Then I can read all my saved articles on my iPad at a later time. Best of all, you can read anywhere, anytime, as it even has an offline mode which downloads your articles.

(PS – Pocket also integrates with Buffer App, so it also saves time in sharing articles to my friends and readers.)

Link: Pocket (Free)

2 – Mindmeister

When I want to brainstorm an idea, I usually use a mindmap. My mindmapping tool of choice is cloud-based MindMeister.

They have a great iPad app that can be used alone or with their online service. I use their subscription service and all of my maps are stored in the cloud.

Link: MindMeister for iPad (Free App – Online Subscription option) 

3 – Day One

I believe that keeping a journal can make you more productive.

Day One is my favorite journal app for iPad. It syncs across all my platforms via Dropbox sync. So, my entries show up on my desktop app, as well.

Link: Day One Journal ($1.99)

4 – Simplenote

I have recently switched to Simplenote for capturing all my random notes. Evernote is another great solution, however I find for simple thoughts and idea capture, that Simplenote is quicker and simpler.

It syncs via the cloud to all my devices and my desktop. This is where I capture all my blog post ideas.

Link: Simplenote (Free)

5 – Reeder

Reeder is the best RSS reader for iPad. It syncs to your Google Reader account so that your unread articles are always up-to-date.

It has a great interface that includes pinching to open folders and close articles. Reeder is where I keep all the blog RSS feeds that I read.

Link: Reeder for iPad ($4.99)

6 – Dropbox

Dropbox is the simplest, quickest way to get to your files and important documents when mobile.

I save time using Dropbox because I can access and share my files from my iPad no matter where I am. I cannot count the number of times that I have solved an issue by accessing a document in my Dropbox while away from my computer.

Dropbox (Free)

7 – iPhoto

Who needs a computer to edit photos? You can do it right on your iPad.

Apple’s iPhoto for iPad is truly amazing. Don’t be fooled by the simple interface, there is plenty of editing power here.

I edit photos on my iPad and then they are available via PhotoStream on all my devices.

iPhoto ($4.99)

8 – Spotify

Spotify is my favorite music online service. In fact, I haven’t bought a traditional album since I joined their service last year.

It is like having an unlimited music library in the cloud. (Which is pretty much what it is…)

Spotify saves me time because I never have to worry about syncing my music. No matter where I am or what device I am on… my music is there.

They have recently added Spotify radio which is free. Or they have subscription services for unlimited music.

Link: Spotify (Free – Subscription Options)

9 – Skitch

Screen capture and markup on the iPad? Yes, indeed. And Skitch for iPad has the same interface as the desktop version.

Skitch saves me time when I need to quickly explain a screenshot. The pic above was a communication between myself and my web designer about the layout of the TMN site. Instead of writing a long text, I was able to quickly and visually show what I was trying to say.

Skitch is now owned by Evernote, so you can send your markups directly to your Evernote account.

Link: Skitch for iPad (Free)

10 – Scanner Pro

I saved one of the best for last.

With the improved camera on the new iPad, the device now makes a great document scanning device.

Scanner Pro is my mobile solution for when I need to quickly scan a document. It handles black-and-white and color scans, and does multiple page documents with ease.

Link: Scanner Pro ($6.99)

Question: What are your favorite iPad apps that help your productivity? Please share your recommendations below!

(Note: App Links above are affiliate links to the App Store. I personally use all the apps recommended.)

No time for time management? Check out my online course designed to jump start your productivity! Take it online on your time and pace. As well, get direct access to me for advice and questions. Get details or enroll now by clicking here!

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • http://twitter.com/mattedmundson Matt Edmundson

    Didn’t know you could get skitch on iPad. Nice! For me – you can’t beat Evernote for most things. Still trying to find the ideal meeting an agenda app tho…

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com/ Craig Jarrow

      Skitch for iPad is well done. You should definitely try it out…

  • http://www.facebook.com/douglas.boyce Douglas Boyce III

    A couple other apps I use on the iPad are Evernote, Pages, Google Reader Mobile, WordPress, and FIRe for Voice Memos

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com/ Craig Jarrow

      Good ones… I too use Evernote (most for filing, rather than note-taking) and WordPress for when I need to do a quick tweak to my site. :)

  • http://www.discipulus.us/ Moe

    Who are you and are you spying on me? With the exception of #1 and #2, I have all of those apps (and love them). I actually prefer Instapaper over Pocket and I don’t use a mindmaping app. I use Omnifocus for getting things done.

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com/ Craig Jarrow

      Moe, good to hear that you are using most of these.

      What do you like about Instapaper over Pocket?

      • http://www.discipulus.us/ Moe

        Pagination, high quality fonts, night mode, tilt reading (great feature where app uses accelerometer to scroll up or down while reading), gestures, “like to share” and fantastic feedback from developer.

  • http://www.enmast.com/ Brad Farris

    Nice collection. I published a similar post a couple of weeks ago: http://www.enmast.com/2012/05/07/ipad-business/

    I really like Agenda instead of the stock calendar app. My #1 productivity app is Noteshelf. It enables the iPad to replace my spiral notebook and lighten my load!

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com/ Craig Jarrow

      Thanks for sharing Brad…!

      Agendas looks slick… just sent it to Pocket to read later. :)

  • http://www.theskooloflife.com Srinivas Rao

    Hey Craig,

    Good stuff. I personally am a huge fan of Pocket. Whenever I read a post with actionable ideas I always save it in pocket so I can refer back to it.

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  • Gracey_Wilson

    Also included in this list should be / Similar to this I
    also like Agora Briefcase which allows you to share files automatically and
    securely to remote iPads. It’s pretty unique and is a new approach to
    professional file sharing.

    AGORA allows me to send/share files to a group of iPad users directly on their
    devices. As I upload documents to this virtual Briefcase, they are immediately
    available for download on all member devices, making it a simple and effective
    tool to send drafts to clients for review, distribute materials to a work team
    or ask for comments on a document. Recipients only need to open the App and all
    documents are right there.

    While all iPad recipients can review the documents as long as I want them to,
    they don’t have actual access to the file itself, and therefore can’t store or
    redistribute them. I can delete or replace files off their devices at any time
    removing them from viewing.

    http://itunes.apple.com/app/agora-briefcase-professional/id493012591?mt=8

    The whole setup is explained at http://agoratheapp.com/briefcase/

  • http://twitter.com/AaronM_STL Aaron M

    Great article. Thanks so much for the info.

    So quick note – I went to download Pocket and was reading some of the recent reviews. It looks like they are having some crashing issues and other bugs. Anyone else seeing this? I guess I will give it a shot, but the reviews didn’t look too positive.

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com/ Craig Jarrow

      Interesting. Thanks for sharing.

      I have not had any issues myself. But, hopefully they will address anything that is occurring.

  • Vinay

    How about Zite for reading, Paper for drawing/sketching?

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com/ Craig Jarrow

      Both great apps! Use them both. :)

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  • Jeff gattens

    Any suggestions for an alternative to Idea Flight?

    • http://www.timemanagementninja.com/ Craig Jarrow

      Sorry, I don’t have any suggestions there.

      Idea Flight is a neat concept… but I’ve never seen it in action in a true meeting setting.

      Seems like a lot of overhead just to get people to view the same presentation on tablets in the same room. ;)

  • http://www.facebook.com/fionaamsaunders Fiona Saunders

    Does scanner pro work well on iPad 2?

  • katiehins

    Try also Beesy, it’s a good productivity app for professionnals.

  • Shenoi

    Thanks for sharing your insights on how you see the ipad marketplace, it is definitely an exciting place that is constantly evolving and I hear that some Ipads are pretty awesome with in-built time tracking features.

    There are a lot of time tracking apps built specifically for the iPad which bring excellent functionality and ease to use. Recently, I have come across one such application namely Replicon time recording software-http://goo.gl/yGF1mm. The basic idea of the app is to help to track time and hours spent on our projects and other tasks.

  • Justin

    This is a great post! I find that a visual approach to time management really keeps me focused and on track. Whether it’s personal fitness, meditation, work, or sleep, I always keep everything organized with my wellness planner Owaves (www.owaves.com). It has a really unique fun and visual platform which I contribute my productivity to.

  • Albert pinto

    First of all, thanks for the great list! I will suggest you to include Proofhub.com in this list. It can be very useful tool to boost productivity. You have all the essential areas like project planning, time tracking and gantt chart etc.

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